Despite not being a collector, while owning the original “Celestial Mechanics”, I’ve always regretted not having a hardcopy of Chuck van Zyl’s “The Relic”. Fortunately, Industry8 did a limited physical re-release of it in 2018 (for which the full recording was remastered), which is the one reviewed here.
In 1995, accomplished US-synthesist Chuck van Zyl released the space exploration double album “The Relic”, a release he -according to the liner notes- considers the companion to “Celestial Mechanics” and the bridge to “Regeneration Mode” (with Peter Gulch). These albums actually compile music of several of Mr van Zyl’s early cassette releases onto a silver platter.
If one loves the classic cosmic electronics of the ’70s with strong emotional impact and narrative form, the eight long-form tracks making up “The Relic” are simply bull’s eye. The range of created lush atmospheres and vast environments airing just the right dosage of subdued drama should call forth a sense of wonder at the universe, and the journey outward. I for one love the outcome’s introspective and highly imaginative qualities to sink into. This music, portraying humanity’s contemplation of space and all its mysteries, is still a 4 star classic after all those years.
You can see what reviews I have done of this artist on the Chuck van Zyl artist page
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