VISIONS - Reviewed by
Several years ago I saw numerous message threads on one of the USEnet news groups about a promising new talent named Richard Bone. Chief among the threads was the almost alarming rate at which this person was releasing new albums. Convinced this was either a hoax, or some paid-for hyperbole, I paid little attention to all the talk.
Not until I saw Ether Dome did I bother to take notice. However, I was impressed enough that when Alternate Realities showed up unexpectedly, I was eager to learn more. Slipping the CD into my player, I found myself enthralled. This is a hit! A recent measure I use to gauge the success of an album is whether or not I want to copy the tunes to my iPod, where I will have access to the music when I drive, while I'm running, or simply when I'm at my computer. I wanted this album on my iPod before
the end of Elutherium, the opening track. By the time "The House That Cugat Built" had finished playing, the iPod was connected and ready to receive.
Bone has the ability to move between musical stylings with seeming effortless ability. Ether Dome was an album of ambient excellence, Alternate Realities is bouncier, jazzier, more playful. An album of previously unreleased or alternate tracks (hence the title), this release does not bear any semblance to a throw-away work, or a release done just to fulfill some contractual obligation. This CD can justifiably fit into the tuneshelf of any serious ambient/electronic/alternative music fan.
"One for the Grooveyard," the third track on the CD, is a foot-tapping ditty that combines sparse piano lines, the muted sound of brushed high- hat cymbals, synthesized saxophone, and washes of pseudo-industrial sound that swirl and merge into a twenty-first century paeon to swing.
For a long time I did not count myself among the ever-growing legion of fans of Richard Bone. Alternate Realities corrects that oversight. Highly recommended.