Sheffield-based artist Alex Storer produces electronic music under the project name of The Light Dreams. Alex who is an honorary artist for the Interstellar Studies initiative, has released various albums through the years, his latest being the November 2015 release, “Timeshift”.
As good as any place to start if you’re new to The Light Dreams’ work – “Timeshift” is a must have for any serious music collection that involves electronic music. It stands out on its own as an album that perfectly showcases Alex Storer’s composing talents. Opening with a dramatic piece, “Daybreak”, that rams an image of space vistas into your head, the tone is epic and builds into a determined syncopated rhythm. Before you get yourself too involved though, “Where Next?” shoots you right between the eyes with its dramatic, but deep and upbeat score. Punctuated in the middle by Storer’s dancing synths, it finishes by reaching a climax and then filtering away into the night.
“The Distance” is quite frankly the piece that got me infected by The Light Dreams’. It’s a fine understated toe-tapping bass-synth driven piece to listen to in any guise. This is perfect for film music. In fact by the time you get to the ominous wall of sound on “Terminal Velocity”, it is clear that The Light Dreams’ music is practically tailored made for colossal big screen productions. This album could easily have been the soundtrack to an epic, action-filled sci-fi film, but still stands alone as an excellent example of composition and craftsmanship.
I particularly love the synth textures that are used on this album. While they are somewhat 1980s sounding, they are also very organic – I was actually surprised at just how organic everything sounds on “Timeshift”.
Musically, this is a great selection of dark and foreboding synthesizer pieces loaded with sweeping atmospherics, with the occasional brisk and upbeat track featuring bright melodies and synthesized percussion. The string parts are wonderful and add softer textures to this album, which seems to have more than its fair share of mood-inducing passages.
One thing that I loved about the music industry decades ago was that artists all had the liberty to do whatever they wanted to do. Nobody was told that they had to make music that sounded like whatever was popular at the time. If you were really different, then you were given that chance to express your own new concept of sound art. This brought about creative artists like Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Tomita, Mike Oldfield and Vangelis among many others. Today there are a handful of electronics artists still doing their own thing, and Alex Storer finds himself in that group.
Hard-hitting rhythms, swirling synths and soaring melodies doesn’t always have to lead to four-to-the-floor club anthems; it can, as it does in this case, deliver beautiful, thrilling, frightening, joyous, poignant, and haunting music for the mind and spirit. Tracks to look out for in this vein include, “At Night II”, “Resplendent” and “Parallax”.
All-round, “Timeshift” is a really good album which if you will turn it up loud and relax you will discover a whole new world of sonic delight.