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Record Highlight — Mark Banning

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Recorded in northern California in 1984 and released in a micro edition by the Creative Sound imprint in January of the following year, Journey to the Light is a true lost gem of private issue New Age music, an album that is more spoken about than heard and deserves to be recognized alongside established classics of the genre. For too long it has languished out of print and been nearly impossible to come by, occasionally popping up in private auctions only to be snatched up by savvy collectors.

Performed with processed electric guitar, zither, voice, and field recordings, it is unabashedly beautiful music- two sidelong pieces that feel as though they may have always existed, hanging in the air like a morning fog over the Pacific. For as archetypal to the genre as Banning’s compositions might appear to be, it would be remiss not to comment on their singular nature, on what sets them apart from those works to which one would be inclined to compare them. Indeed, Banning’s music has a seriousness and intensity that was absent from much of the New Age scene as it existed in the early ’80s.

Available soon from Students of Decay.

 

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