Steve Roach & Michael Shrieve – The Leaving Time

Steve Roach & Michael Shrieve - The Leaving Time
3.5

Release data:

Steve Roach & Michael Shrieve – The Leaving Time
MC/LP/CD, RCA, 1988


In the same time Roach’s ambient masterpiece “Dreamtime Return” was released, the rather forgotten “The Leaving Time” (referring to Steve’s trip to Down Under) saw the light of day.

This collaborative album with Santana percussionist/drummer Michael Shrieve though always stayed in the far shadows and is almost unnoticed until this very day as it fell through at RCA. Still, there’s a lot of fun stuff on this release, adressing the tribal, lush and dreamy atmospheric world Steve was into at that time while adding a progressive, powerful drive and turn to it. The addition of David Torn’s distinct guitar sound adds and extra dose of richness to the warm flood of synth waves.

Drama, euphoria and even symphonic / cinematic realms all shapeshift and pass by on the 45-minute instrumental release, sometimes turning out quite unusual and progrock like (“San Diego”) or with a slight touch of ambient jazz and Eastern music. “Big Sky” and the title track are the quieter, moodier pieces, while in “Edge Runner” things shift into higher gear though still in a contemplative sphere.

This quite exceptional (but unfortunately no longer available) album is a rare find these days, but worth chasing.

You can see what reviews I have done of this artist on the Steve Roach artist page

 

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