Search - Sarah Hopkins :: Australia: Sound of the Earth

Australia: Sound of the Earth
Sarah Hopkins
Australia: Sound of the Earth
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, World Music, New Age, Pop, Rock
Just as the mythology of the Australian people and their continent was personified through the complex Aboriginal creation stories called The Dreamtime, the land also gave rise to a rich musical culture unlike any other. A...  more »


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Just as the mythology of the Australian people and their continent was personified through the complex Aboriginal creation stories called The Dreamtime, the land also gave rise to a rich musical culture unlike any other. Australia: Sounds of the Earth captures the primordial hums and rhythms that have emerged from and moved across this continent in the four directions, like the winds themselves since The Dreamtime began. This recording features the didgeridoo, an Aboriginal wind instrument of remarkable flexibility and power, in traditional and innovative formats. Virtuoso solos by Aboriginal artist, David Hudson, are complemented by performances of up to four didgeridoo players accompanied by drums and electronics.Tracing the development of an indigenous music firmly rooted in patterns of existence dictated by the rhythms of the land, Australia: Sounds of the Earth embraces Australia's musical past and present. The riveting performance of cellist Sarah Hopkins, acknowledges the debt 20th century composers owe to the influence of Aboriginal music. By utilizing a combination of bowing techniques and overtone singing, the Australian cellist emulates sounds of the didgeridoo. Producer, Steve Roach, blends the recordings from the outback with their haunting modern echoes by creating evocative soundscapes, and the illusion of a journey through time and space to the origins of these primal sounds.

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CD Reviews

Wonderfully Original, A Must Have
M. D. MCGINLEY | United States | 04/12/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"When I purchased "Australia," I was expecting more of something like "Dreamtime Return," which Roach recorded around 1987 for the 1988 release. Ever since then, I was hooked on Roach. His ambient, totally original style is evident on this, another Australian recording that is permeated with the digeradoo, a long, wind instrument frequently used there that produces deep, pleasantly haunting sounds. It is believed that Roach uses whatever can carry a sound as percussion instruments: rocks, water, bottles, washboards--and some instruments you never would have guessed--in addition to his synthesizers.

At first, I had resistance to the syncopated, off-beat patterns, but as I let the album play, the rhythms of the other hand-made instruments Roached used, and the overall down-to-earth, unrehearsed style got to me, like the distant sound of a bull roarer in the background. I listened to the entire album, and nearly an hour went by like it was 15 minutes. Roach's music is difficult to explain, but is best summed up as music for the mind. I listen to it--with REPEAT ON--while reading and writing, and to help me reach a transcendental, meditative state. For these reasons, as with all Roach's music, I find that it is best as a personal, solo journey best experienced with the privacy and deep sound of a good pair of headphones. Highly recommended as an effective, immediate means to reduce stress, aggression and hostility. If you don't have this album, then you are truly missing out on one of the most original pieces of ambience from one of the most respected musical artists of our time."
Very deep and powerful shamanic music
earthworm | Oregon | 05/29/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is music for communicating with the Spirits, with the Dreamtime, with the Australian Earth. This was my introduction to all three of these artists, and while I have pursued the music of all three, and all three have done amazing work, nothing that any of them has done separately seem to approach the depth of this album. Their synergy generated an extraordinary Power. (Sarah Hudson's unique and extraordinary cello solo, "Awakening the Earth," deserves special mention. I wish she would do a whole album of music like this, but it may have been uniquely inspired for the occasion.)

This is not very accessible music. It is not entertainment. It is not even especially pretty or pleasant. But as you tune into it, it can put you into a profound altered state.