Tracks Across the Universe: A Chronology of Ambient and Electronica
from the book written by Jim Brenholts
Richard Bone has been
involved in the recording industry for over 20
years. He has been associated with some
stellar performers - most notable Lenny Kaye
(guitarist for Patti Smith and occasional
contributor to Gabrielle Roth). He started his
own label - Quirkworks - in 1991. On that
label, he began releasing synth-pop and upbeat
ambience. He has also ventured into the
minimalist arena. Currently, he records his
minimal ambience for Hypnos Recordings and his
upbeat rhythmic ambience on
Richard Bone released a
CD with a jewel box, "Eternal Now." Noted for
his sparse packaging (which helped keep prices
low) and sophisticated artwork, Bone reversed
his field and used sparse artwork and
conventional packaging. Do not worry, though.
The real artwork is in the performance. A
multi-talented musician, Richard has honed his
influences into a unique sound that reminds
the listener of everything from "Tubular
Bells" to Fripp & Eno to Wendy Carlos.
This is a grabber and a keeper.
"At that moment a blackvessel sailing on a cloud appeared and carried
off the man's spirit." Thus Richard Bone
quotes Horace Beck in the liner notes for "The
Spectral Ships." This CD is a return to the
minimalist ambience of "The Eternal Now."
Dark, ominous and ethereal, the music flows
within an eerie soundscape, evoking images of
those vessels in the clouds. This is an
atmospheric atmosphere. The walls of sound are
delicate. Each wall is built upon the
preceding wall. They replace each other as the
first wall slowly and gently dissipates into
the background. There are no monumental walls,
only continuous and stable walls. Richard is
in a zone. He can do no wrong.
"Electropica" is Richard
Bone's tribute to Latin ambience and bossa
nova. Never has an artist founded a label more
aptly named than Richard's Quirkworks label.
Beautiful artwork and rhythmic ambience are
cornerstones of Richard's work. This is no
exception! The listener can imagine Xavier
Cugat jumping out to lead the band!
"Coxa" is Richard Bone's
ambient tribute to jazz. Last year he souped
up the salsa. This year he electrifies the
jazz. Cool, hip, groovy and wild, this CD is
another gem from Richard's Quirkworks
"Ether Dome" is a very
mature atmospheric CD from the master of quirk
- Richard Bone. After abandoning or leaving
his experimental crossovers of recent years,
Richard returned to minimalist ambience with a
huge - yet subtle - splash. Hot desert
ambience is the order of the day and Richard
takes his creativity to the next level. He has
been in the minimalist zone before. After
"Electropica" and "Coxa," "Spectral Ships" was
a treat. This album is special and
The reviews above were submitted on Feb 16,
ones below were added September 10,
an experimental foray into ambient atmospheres
from the doctor of quirk, Richard Bone.
Richard made this his first release from
"Quirkworks Laboratory Discs," more commonly
known just as "Quirkworks." This CD is packed
with references to a broad range of ambient
styles. There are some hi-tech rhythms, dense
atmospheres, minimalist soundscapes, and -
DUH! - some quirky eclectica! The experiMENTAL
overtones take this disc over the top! There
was a movie released recently called "Being
John Malkovich." A movie called "Being Richard
Bone" would be a psychoactive event of
monumentous and cascading enjoyment.
Succinctly, it would be way cool!
is Richard Bone's tribute to the Ascension
Schools and the beat poets. It is a smooth
ride of soft rhythms and quirky
instrumentation. The gentle soundscape is
perfect for grooving, laying back and drifting
into a coffeehouse. It is also excellent for
meditating on a lazy day and, perhaps,
contemplating the state of the mind or of the
soul. Richard has always been in the "cool"
zone. On this CD, he goes "cooler than cool"
and remains in the "can do no wrong"