Now, 13 years after his debut “Deep Space”, New Zealand based composer (Nigel) John Stanford releases his second album “TimeScapes”. The latter contains the synthesizer soundtrack music to Tom Lowe’s amazing documentary film of the same name, that’s loaded with stunning time-lapse footage.
Clocking at exactly 48 minutes, the eleven tracks offer a very nice contemporary instrumental outcome with strong hints of neo-classical and symphonic music. At times, the music shows a slight comparison with the nature-inspired albums by Lanz and Speer.
Besides orchestral and string textures, Mr Stanford also implemented gracious choir pads, humming monks and guitar textures. The third track “The Approaching Lights” is already a highlight with its lovely piano theme that evolves into grand symphonic spaces. Things turn more rhythmic and slightly rocking on “Crystal Skies” with its pronounced guitar, symphonic character and occasional thunder drums.
A sense of grace and awe marks the symphonic title track: at first smooth choir pads merge with gentle orchestral tapestries, but this changes as a soaring guitar fades in and the thunder drums kick in, making things rock in the last 2 minutes or so. Tribal percussion and Indian voice set the pace on “The Chant”, that again builts into a symphonic realms.
The piano theme of “The Approaching Lights” returns on the very short “The Bear and the Forest”. The final piece “Near Centaurus”, heard during the end titles of the movie, is actually a reworked version of a dub/trance-ambient track from John’s debut album “Deep Space”.