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Review of "Shadows Of The Heart"
by Sonic Immersion (April 2016)

"Shadows of the Heart" is a recording of serene, nocturnal and overall dreamy textural ambiences derived from acoustic and electric sources to which composer Dan Pound applied techniques of repeated chord progression motifs.

At first, the 7-track/55-minute outcome of drifting and introspective soundwaves seem to head toward the league of Roach's "Structures from Silence" and "Quiet Music", but the acoustic ingredients secure a smooth sparkling and slightly more vibrant character. Nonetheless, the gentle ambience progression and slow evolving flow of spacious strings form the core of "Shadows of the Heart", making this the most fluid, caressing and introspective release from Pounds catalog to date.
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Review of "Change Of Weather"
by Expose' (Aug 2015)


Dan Pound is a virtuoso electronic composer and musician, crafting visual and emotive musical canvases with his palette of synthesizers and other equipment. Each Dan Pound release I have reviewed for Exposé is based on a theme clearly communicated via the music. Change of Weather is his 17th solo release, with six electronic tone poems seguing seamlessly across its 52 minutes. The first two tracks are Parts I and II of "Through the Fog," a title that immediately brings the ambient artist Jeff Greinke to mind. Over the course of 25 minutes Dan takes you from pre-dawn fog to mid-morning when it finally clears. Carl Sandburg's poem Fog may even have been the inspiration for this piece:

The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.
However, when the fog clears, it is not to sunlight but rain, leading into "After the Rain." In the distance you hear the rumble of thunder underpinning the dripping water and pulsating drones. As the sun emerges, we find ourselves in a steamy "Rainforest" with cheery sequencers emulating dappled sunlight. This is a very beautiful piece accompanied by Andean pipes reminiscent of Popol Vuh's Aguirre soundtrack. Approaching evening, "A Different Wind" picks up to cool things down. This is slow, floating music when about half-way into the track sequencers arrive to propel you further towards night. The closing track is the quiet and blissful "Moon Tide Rising." Darkness descends and the moon gently tugs you along in the slow currents and shifting layers of dripping sounds. Quite a remarkable and enjoyable listening experience.


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Review of "Change Of Weather"
by Hypnagogue (July 2015)


Attention to detail and attention to the interplay between the smallest sounds and the larger ideas around them, are hallmarks of Dan Pound's signature sound. On Change of Weather, Pound uses that to make musical commentary on the weather-how it affects us and how we affect it. The journey takes us through places of fog and rain, and into zones that are both sunny and cool. It begins in darker tones with the two-part "Through the Fog." The first, shorter part sets the mood with low-end chords creeping in like lowering clouds and skittering electronics arcing over our heads. Pound's constructs wander slowly past, the sounds appropriately misty. Settle in for the second part, the longest ride here at just over 18 minutes. It soon brightens considerably more than its first part, and develops a richer complexity. Vocal samples with a tribal flair and light percussion fill the space alongside those pads and even more woven analog electronics. It's quiet and deep but layers in a gentle vibe. Toward the end it smooths and thins beautifully, putting all the focus on flowing ambient lines. I feel that there is an organic movement happening from piece to piece on this album. It's often subtle and may even be a matter of me as a reviewer looking for connections. There are light twinkling sounds in "Through the Fog, Part II" that seem to get picked up as droplets in "After the Rain." let's go back for a moment to my comment about the integral role of small sounds in Pound's work-there may be no better example than this. He fills your ears with fluid, burbling sounds, some barely a squib, and sets them in bouncing motion. That feel, and the rain motif, carries over further into "Rainforest," where Pound folds in some flute to up the acoustic/organic ante. This one will most certainly soothe your soul. Now, this may be too much of a stretch, but I think the flute sound may find something of a logical extension in the harmonica that comes in during "A Differnt Wind." It fits into the the way Pound is melting together electronic and breath-based sounds. At the very least, the texture it adds is excellent, sharply cutting its way through the misty pads. "Moon Tide Rising" closes out the release in twinkly, bright style, but it might be too bright. There is something less than pleasant in the sort of dissonant play between the chimes and the underlying pads, something feeling almost like a disconnect, that takes me briefly out the album. It feels in places like there are two competing ideas pulling me in opposing directions, and I'm not enjoying that sensation. Coming at the end of an incredibly deep flow, it gets a bit of wince from me. Overall, however, Change of Weather is well worth a very deep listen. Take in the complexity of Dan Pound's work, and enjoy.

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Review of "Change Of Weather"
by Morpheus Music (May 2015)


Dreamy ambient electronica.

The latest release from multi-instrumentalist/composer Dan Pound is released via the artist's own PoundSounds label and consists of six beautifully complementary tracks. The long-form Through The Fog Part II at just over eighteen minutes is accompanied by ten minutes of Moon Tide Rising and four others pieces closer to five or six minutes.
Rising gradually out of darkness, Change Of Weather is restful, near-beatless ambient luxury. The ecstatic, slow-motion introduction hints at possible storm cloud formation but meanders mostly ever-sunward. From here drifting pads and tidal drones often seem positively bathed in tropical sunlight, undulating lazily whilst percussive effects, faint vocal echoes and bright, delicate synth patterns twinkle upon the sound surface. There are rhythmic elements, but always very subtle, the music still having a beatless feel: light clicks and ticks distantly reverberate, gathering into slight beats in places; sequencer patterns at times form into rolling cycles and shorter flecks of regularity form and fade. Native American flute dances among the gentle arpeggios of Rain Forest, understated, mesmeric; harmonica so softly played as to be almost a part of the drone bed and a variety of human voice samples add further interest. Tracks seamlessly cross fade so that Change Of Weather works as a single experience.


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Review of "Life Giving"
by Aural Innovations (Feb 2015)

Life Giving is ambient-electronic space musician Dan Pound's second release of 2014 and the follow up to Eros Thanatos. Pound includes some thoughts about the new album on his web site, but I think the opening line of his notes sums it up nicely: "Sublime, nocturnal space music".

Some of the music is laser focused on deep space reflection. Age Of Innocence is a graceful if relatively brief snippet. I like the prominent use of guitar on the cosmically pastoral Only One. In Suspension is a meditative combination of deep space drift and whimsical cosmic ballet, with playful electronic configurations dancing across slowly soaring space waves.

But Pound kicks up the freaky factor in places too. The multi-layered title track brings together quirkily pulsating streams, syncopated patterns, space waves and drones, thereby striking a balance between image inducing scenes of space, hypnotic ambient drift, and a dash of Kosmiche-Prog. We've got some lengthier stretch out tracks too. The 16 minute Passing Through Time consists of heavenly Space-Ambient bliss, where the effects and melody are propelled by a gradually building electro rhythmic pulse. I like the harmonious contrast between feelings of serenity, alien effects, machine-like pulsations, and light melody. Throughout the piece the music slowly builds to a fuller symphonic feel, though the feeling is at all times light and angelic, and it's all carried along by an increasingly energetic cadence which ebbs and wanes with the mood of the music. Taken By The Dream is similar, and I really dig the periodic funky groove which adds a bit of oomph to the cosmic tranquility, and as the music progresses the funk takes on a Dub characteristic which alternates with soothing melodic segments combined with pleasant drones and effects. Though it later becomes lightly orchestral, Life Pulse is one of the most purely ambient tracks of the set, where every bleep, rush of air and pulsation stands out prominently as the sounds and effects ride the crest of the slowly drifting soundscape wave. This segues seamlessly into the final track, What Matters Most, which winds the set down with a peacefully melodic finale.

If you like floating space electronica that teeters between New Age and Prog, you'll dig Dan Pound.
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Review of "Life Giving"
by Expose' (Jan 2015)

Dan Pound is quite a prolific electronic composer, and I am finding it difficult staying current with his new releases: Life Giving is his second full-length release in 2014. After the time he spent mixing and mastering Thanatos earlier this year, Dan was happy to get back into the studio and create new music. So much so that the music literally leapt off his fingers, acting as a sort of meditation and deep breathing exercise. Each of Dan's releases that I have heard have a theme, and Life Giving continues this trend. All eight tracks on Life Giving are different explorations into floating ambient bliss centered around biological life. Some tracks have a pulsating undercurrent while Dan employs bubbling sequencers on others. I can easily visualize Life Giving as the sound track to a Nova or similar Discovery Channel program about life and cellular growth. The track titles truly capture the sensation of listening to the music. For example, when I listen to "In Suspension" I can visualize DNA strands suspended in the primordial soup. This entire album is an extremely restful and contemplative experience that mirrors Dan's time in the studio. I hesitate to label Life Giving as New Age since Dan did not compose it for the purposes of healing or meditation, instead the music documents his state of mind at that time.


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Review of "Life Giving"
by Synth Sequences (Sept 2014)

"Deeply ambiospherical, Life Giving is certainly one of the most seducing cosmic and sonic universe that I heard recently"

***½
(Deep cosmic soundscapes)
You should not really rely on the ambient noises and the monstrous organic tones which open "Life Giving" to judge this last album of Dan Pound. The delicate arpeggios which come down, like ashes of Vesuvius, will charm your ears and the muffled impulses which propel them, and eventually swallow them, will plunge you into an atmosphere of cosmic darkness. I quite liked this first contact with the music of Dan Pound. This prolific multi-instrumentalist from California presents an audacious approach by making travel a rather experimental ambient music in the corridors of Dark New Age and especially in the borders of cosmos with soundscapes drawn in a wide range of quirky tones. A sonic pallet to the colors of a rather audacious imagination and which can find anchoring in many ears, if we like an experience which is more sonic than musical. But the music, and its harmonies, is never too much far from these moods to the thousand paradoxes which stuff this impressive ambient fresco. And the title-track is a rather good indication of what our ears will go throughout the 74 minutes of "Life Giving" where synth lines and waves, as harmonious as ambient, float and shimmer in a sound universe where the serenity is next to storms of static ambient elements.
"Age of Innocence" is a beautiful small jewel of meditation where dreamy arpeggios float in beautiful synth lines to the soft perfumes of contemplativity. Longer and that would have been even more beautiful! The descent of joyful serpentines which liven up the introduction of "In Suspension" feeds all the paradoxes which surround the music of Dan Pound. Melodic and very charming, these serpentines wear an invigorating tone which challenges the soporific axes of an impenetrable cosmic music. And the parameters, as well as the depth, of the cosmic approach from "Life Giving" are doubtless among the most beautiful and the most complete that I heard. Here, the amorphous breezes of synth draw black horizons from where slender translucent filets leak out, whereas these small serpentines are unwinding a bright effect of weightlessness which sticks us on our earphones. This is very immersive and rather realistic of the visions from its author. The symphony of breaths from the long didgeridoos gives a rather tribal / ambient side to "Only One". The sampling of multilayer synth lines, as well as the didge breezes, amplifies the black vibes that even the delicate notes of guitar cannot uproot of its catatonic envelope. Didge burps are also opening the twilights of "Passing through Time" which mixes marvellously the heat of synths to the hoarse breaths of deserts' trumpets and of their jerky echoes. Some discreet sequences dance around this uncommon meshing, giving an appearance of rhythm to a long track which is a real sonic mishmash, both at the level of the elements and of this perpetual duel between rising rhythm and these atmospheres which in the end become very seraphic. "Taken by the Dream" is my crush on "Life Giving". The structure is always soaked with this sonic confrontation between the serenity and the ambiospherical agitation. What is charming even more is this superb down-tempo, coming out of nowhere, which shakes the elements and which gives an unsuspected relief to an odyssey of sounds and distorted vibes which strews all the parameters of this surprising album of Dan Pound. This slow rhythm has a break in the middle of 12 minutes, making room to splendid arpeggios which draw a magnificent ambient glass musing. This is very beautiful, with a subtle dramatic crescendo, and every second which passes is overfed by a sonic fauna of which the wealth is such as it is impossible to discover it in full in a single listening. The music fades in the barriers of the nothingness of "Life Pulse". There where the life breathes weakly behind a heavy curtain of black vibes and stirs into organic gurglings and shamanic percussions which draw hypnotic lines. This mixture of cosmic music and spiritual witchcraft lets filter an armada of implosive impulses which forge the very ambiocosmic beat of "Life Pulse" which floats and floats like a long spaceship at adrift. "What Matters Most" concludes with a very meditative piano, among which the notes which pearl in a dense cosmic envelope awaken in me memories of Vangelis. And this, even if this small duel between these organic impulses and these waves of serenity which torment the ambiences to the nuances tinted with paradoxes of "Life Giving" can as well one day enchant and one evening tear the peace of mind of the listening of an album which plunges us literally into a sonic universe without borders.
Sylvain Lupari (September 30th, 2014)


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Review of "Life Giving"
by Sonic Immersion (Sept 2014)

"Life Giving" (coined as nocturnal space music by the composer) is a release filled with lush, tranquil, smooth soaring and drifting ambient music centred on the living spheres.

The 73-minute gentle spiral of warm textural soundscapes and effects is accompanied by subtle pulsations pushing things slowly onward. The overall minimal sound design becomes more upfront on the fourth piece "Only One" (where light guitars strings are neatly added to the flow of synth pads) before things shift to a more "active" modus on the 16-minute "Passing through time" without abandoning the hypnotic, minimal realm.

The latter also applies when subtle rhythms fade in on the morphing "Taken by the Dream" (with its pleasant drony and murky sound effects) and the percolating, circular and curling moves making up the fine "Life Pulse". The essence and intrinsic message of the previous music winds down gently on the final piece.
Nice going, Mr Pound.

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Review of "Life Giving"
by Morpheus Music (August 2014)

"Ambient, nocturnal, space music.
Squelching sci-fi zaps and blips in empty space open Life Giving, a dreamy, drifting series of very beautiful ambient spaces and minimal soundscapes. There are rhythmic pieces here where naturally flowing sequences weave among water currents and tinkling chimes; there are light beats that trip within shady expanses; there are burbling patterns that pulse and roll below simple, elegant themes. Some passages hold melodic sections that distantly recall Satie, Close Encounters or even the band Enigma; melancholy, delicate phrases that linger in the air with restful resonance. But Life Giving is primarily a music of subtle drones and lustrous textures; ambient openings that glisten and gleam with overlaid synthetic harmonies more oriented at establishing sublime mood zones than creating firm structures to cling to.
The second release of 2014 from ambient musician/film and multi-media composer Dan Pound comes in the wake of the guitar driven Eros Thanatos. This album of eight spacey expanses is once again released via Dan's own Pound Sounds label and takes its place atop what is now a rather impressive back catalogue. An aim of Life Giving is to facilitate personal meditation and inner visualization; given the right low-lighting and a suitably submersive listening arrangement I would say that Dan meets the criteria admirably. If you'd like to listen to the music you can visit Dan's official website where each track is available to sample as well as all of his previous releases. If you'd like to experience the transportation intended - buy the CD."


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Review of "Life Giving"
by Sonic Curiosity (Nov 2014)


This release from 2014 offers 73 minutes of stately electronic music.

Delicate electronics craft light-hearted excursions into optimistic territory.

The electronics are fragile; even when expressing sharper tones, the resonance conveys a tender quality. Dreamy background textures support the lead riffs, whose notes are crisp and often playful. Multiple layers afford these melodies a sincere depth with several riffs contributing to the overall melodies. While still ethereal, the result has an elusive puissance.

While keyboards are employed, many of the sounds are triggered by dials and switches, manifesting as sparkling embellishments amid the sonic flow.

No percussion is necessary for most of this tuneage, but a few tracks do possess percussion (albeit of a soothing type, but don't be misled, the rhythms are exceptionally hypnotic).

The compositions are designed to impart a sense of positivism, uplifting the listener from the mundane world and transporting their spirit to a realm of lusciously undulating pulsations. Ah, but not all these songs are gentle, some bristle with a carefully restrained intensity, delivering gritty growls and pulsating thumps. But the emphasis of most of the tunes is a holistic healing property.


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Review of "Eros Thanatos"
by Hypnagogue (Oct 2014)


You know how musicians are. They get a new toy and they just have to head into the studio to see what it does, then come out and share it with us. And that can be a very good thing. Case in point: Dan Pound picked up some new guitar effects and set about playing with them. Pound notes on his web site that "Using different guitars, effects, techniques and ideas, I was able to extrapolate a myriad of tonal timbres that resembled other instruments like organ, strings, oboes, bassoons and even human voices." The result comes to us as Eros Thanatos, yet another beautiful work from this talented and prolific musician. As usual, Pound takes us through a changing vista where ambient, tribal and space music intertwine, offering rich melodies and curious sound-play, all spread out in excellent production that simply begs for the closest possible listen. Eros Thanatos exhibits a very good sense of flow. While Pound walks us through the changing scenes, the tracks meld one to the next without jostling, like a perfectly executed slow crossfade. Within the tracks there are smooth transitions, too-the way a sequencer rises against lush ambient pads in the opener, "From Love and Grace," for example. The middle portion of this release runs particularly deep, beginning with the purely atmospheric tones of "Incarnate." This borderline dark piece crawls into your head with small sounds skittering about and a slowly oscillating bass pulse marking time. It melts perfectly into the tribal-flavored "Shadow in the Dark," which, with its twanging sequencer line and chant, packs a lot of Steve Roach influence. (Which is not to say it's derivative-Pound's work quite often exhibits an excellent tribal sense.) This is another piece with a smooth transition; the tribal elements lift slowly out of a stretch of pads that brighten like dawn, the first hint of change riding in on the call of a flute. When the sequencer hits, the track shifts to a new place and vibe, and the switchover-again-is seamless, sensible, and organic. Another aspect many of the tracks here show is a tendency to build toward a very big, full sound. Never bombastic, but just growing in intensity and depth. It amps up the emotional impact of the album overall. Finally, while most of the guitar sounds have been reconfigured by Pound's various new toys, there are places where the unaltered sound shines through, and it adds a nice solidity to the proceedings. "Between Breaths" features a seductively lazy slide guitar amid a smoky tangle of electronics and the sharp rap of a tabla or clay pot. "From Beyond" opens with picked notes that gently fade off into an ambient backdrop.

Eros Thanatos continues Dan Pound's streak of superb ambient releases. He's always been one of those artists who's very interested in constant redefinition of his style and has the confidence and skill to pull it off, whichever direction he decides to take. This is an album I have gladly looped for hours. There's so much detail and so much beauty to take in, it's worth repeated deep listens. A must-hear from Dan Pound.



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Review of "Eros Thanatos"
by Expose' (June 2014)

"It is hard to keep up with Dan's output. I had barely had enough time to absorb his previous Spheres before he sent me his next CD Eros Thanatos. Not being familiar with the meaning of this Greek term, I did a little research and discovered that Freud theorized that the duality of human nature emerged from two basic instincts: Eros and Thanatos. He saw in Eros the instinct for life, love, and sexuality in its broadest sense, and in Thanatos, the instinct of death and aggression. Eros is the drive toward attraction and reproduction; Thanatos toward repulsion and death. One leads to the reproduction of the species, the other toward its own destruction. What Dan Pound has attempted is to communicate these concepts through his music. On the one hand you hear sequence driven romantic electronic music, while on the other hand there are passages that evoke images of breathing as the music slowly flows back and forth, like deep sleep breathing. Then on "Shadow in the Dark" something new for Dan, dark and almost sinister ambient music. The title track is another shift to piano sequences that are almost Eno-esque in approach. This is great stuff, especially if you just want to kick back and let your mind flow free of your everyday troubles and worries."


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Review of "Eros Thanatos"
by Progressive Rock Central (June 2014)

Gentle layers of atmospheric electronic music characterize the sound of composer and instrumentalist Dan Pound. Although a lot of people identify ambient electronic music with synthesizers, Dan Pound is one of those musicians who specializes in using guitars combines with synths.

Eros Thanatos, released this year will take you on a voyage that mixes peace and beauty with the eerie and intriguing, drifting endlessly with his mesmerizing flowing sounds, pulses, drones, tribal voices, and loops.

Eros Thanatos reveals the future-world aesthetic of 21st century ambient electronic music.



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Review of "Spherical"
by Expose` (May 2014)

"Dan Pound is an electronic musician who has released 15 albums over the past several years. Each album has a different theme. I usually do not think of music as having a shape, but in the case of this CD, there is movement in the ebb and flow of Dan's synths that makes you visualize an amorphous sphere or the Brownian movement of air molecules and smoke to define a shape much like the cover art. There are lots of interesting ideas percolating throughout the disc to keep your attention. All of the music is similar, but in a sense different. It is as if the disc is one long piece with many movements. On track 4 "Through the Center" Dan adds a Spanish sounding guitar that nicely augments the electronic drones. Every once in a while I detect some Tangerine Dream references like the rhythms on "Of the Essence." And the final track, "Like Tears in the Rain," could have been an alternative for Vangelis' music during the climax of Bladerunner. I find Dan's music to be refreshing and not derivative of 80s/90s New Age."
Written by Henry Schneider



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Review of "Eros Thanatos"
by Sonic Immersion (April 2014)


"The ambient sonic art displayed on Eros has maintained the improvements already notable on Dan's previous album "Spherical".

According the press-info, the outcome on "Eros Thanatos" is based mostly on guitar soundscapes effects, complemented by analogue and digital synths, while applying deep layers of reverb in the whole process. The first pieces, "From Love and Grace" and "Finding Beauty", already make a great and moody entrance into ethereal and overtly lush textural spheres while spreading a spatial and warm sonic perfume with a touch of melancholy.

This intimate mood continues on the next six instrumental tracks of the almost 70 minute, soft glowing release, creating a vast soundscape of gently flowing and resonating freeform tapestries that contain some subtle rhythms occasionally. The drony "Incarnate" sets out gloomy and darkening, as it ascends into deeper, soft bubbling and soaring worlds. It is followed by the mesmerizing "Shadow in the Dark", where the composer adds an exotic-shamanic edge along a subtle pulse sequence, and the gently sequenced ethereal musings of the title track.

The overall atmosphere maintains quiet and sedate on the remaining tracks, although the sound current morphs rather firmly in a drony sense.
Put on your headphones though to grab all the details and subtleties "Eros Thanatos" has to offer. "

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Review of "Spherical"
by Stars End (Aug 2013)


A prolific releaser of CDs Dan Pound's evolution as a synthesist has been a public one. The seven studio dreams that make up Spherical (73'43") play at the boundaries of New Age, Tribal, Ambient and Spacemusic. While Pound has obviously absorbed the ideas and concepts proposed by the bigs of these genres, he manages to create something distinctly his own. This originality keeps the listener slightly off balance - in a good way, as this work unfolds in an unexpected direction. Spherical feels fresh and innovative. It does not surprise merely for the sake of being experimental. Pound's synth stories seem wholly new. Never a retrograde trip, Spherical features more than just the tick-tock rhythms of his Berlin School contemporaries. Purring synthesizers and vertiginous metallic sequencer patterns are flanked by tender electronic melodies supporting a thoughtfully plucked acoustic guitar. His reverberant wooden flute playing becomes a somber plaint against digital culture; the solo natural notes buoyed by synthesized breathing drones and warm, sparkling accents. During its sections of primitive quietude Spherical evokes a world of the subconscious. The flight of recurring chord changes lull in their hollow roundness as the deliberately paced pieces contract and expand unexpectedly. Once we have been slowed mentally, the musical arc alights pleasingly to ethereal heights. Throughout Spherical we are in the company of an artist who is constantly seeking out new sounds, forms, levels, and bracing asymmetries. After numerous album releases, Dan Pound is still climbing to his highest peak.
- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 22 August 2013

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Review of SPHERICAL
by Hypnagogue (May 2013)

Dan Pound opens up tribal and mystical spaces on his new release, Spherical. For this outing, Pound pulls some of his sounds from an interesting source. While working on this disc, a now-replaced bit of studio equipment would sometimes play back tracks from another album Pound was working on, but at half speed. Recognizing the potential is these fresh rogue sounds, he worked them into Spherical. This, added to his usual arsenal of synths, guitars, flute, percussion and more, drives another deep and well-orchestrated excursion. Listeners with some ambient background will likely pick up distinct bits of the influence of Steve Roach in various parts of Spherical. "Only A Memory" sounds like what would have happened had Roach thought to add understated beats to Structures from Silence. Pound's pads have a tone that's close to identical to that disc's, but the slight sidestep he takes with the beats keeps him in his own territory. And the title track has its share of familiar echoes, from the curvy analog squibs to the rise-and-fall backing drone. Which, again, doesn't detract from the quality of the thing. It's still a deep groove in a nicely carved-out electronic space. Pound's fully in his element when he takes the listener into tribal zones, beginning with "Lookout Point." Native American flute vies with growling bass drones and ominous pads, a nice mix of organic and electronic. It conjures up (in my head, anyway) a wonderful visual sense, a sort of man against nature feel, the flute coursing in the face of an oncoming storm. Then "At A Distance" keeps it going by ramping up the percussion with clattering sticks and throwing in dark, spiraling pads and hypnotic drones. You'll happily lose your way in the middle of this piece, and the way it pares down toward the end, spreading into a wide vista, is superb. Pound uses this to carry into the calm swirls of "Through the Center," the disc's long showcase piece. (And, I admit, the start of this, with crow calls and long pads, put me in mind of part of Mystic Chords & Sacred Spaces-but only until the rest of the track swept me up.) Then, unexpectedly, acoustic guitar with a bit of Spanish flair comes in, a grounding presence in the deepening space. Pound works in a bass pulse, its insistent repetition becoming a mind-salving element as he thickens and intensifies his layers. This track exemplifies why headphones are a must for this journey. As always, Pound pays laser-focused attention to his small sounds and they way they're worked around your headspace, and that work demands equal attention from you. The acoustic guitar returns on the closing track, "Like Tears In Rain." Here the guitar trades off with high, soaring pads in a cleansing New Age sort of mix that lifts the darker aspects away and brings the disc to a soft close.

Spherical is another great release from Pound, and one of his darker excursions in a while. He's always been a solid tribal-ambient musician, and that's the standout element on an overall strong set of pieces. Very much worth a close listen.

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Review of SPHERICAL
by Sonic Immersion

More than once, the music of Dan Pound has shown similarities to the sonic art of Steve Roach. The 74-minute "Spherical" reveals many improvements in that direction, as it merges immersive textural sound worlds with beats, assorted percussion, guitars, field recordings and some Native American flute, all hinting for the deep expanse and wide introspection.

Moreover, "Spherical" is a mystical and rather dark-shaded sound quest with a slight shamanic rim travelling through otherworldly textural spaces. It more and more gives birth to an own signature, especially on the excellent title track (found that the start) and "Through the Centre".

Despite its ethereal qualities, the whole album is not an uplifting aural experience, but one of a somber and overall introspective nature demanding active and focused listening. Headphone listening is recommended.


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Review of "SPHERICAL"
by Sonic Curiosity (Dec, 2013)


This CD from 2013 offers 74 minutes of tenderly invigorated ambient music.

Ambient electronics get a subtle boost from gentle rhythms.

The first track is an excellent example of this style of calm soundscape whose sedate posture is given appealing vitality with chugging percussion and an assortment of novel chittering effects dancing at the periphery of the textural flow.

The next piece adopts a more pensive disposition, as solemn flutes tickle the pulsing tones. The flutes even muster into a dominant vantage, establishing a mood of returning after a long time.

Track three lays down a sighing auralscape, then agitates that flow with inventive electronic effects and a relaxed tribal beat. During pauses of the latter, the foundation ripples with airy expressions.

Track four is the albumÃs longest song (at 16 minutes, compared to the 7-11 average of the other pieces). This duration allows the composition time to gradually evolve its undulant tonalities. A brief passage featuring acoustic guitar leads to a vista in which auxiliary electronics season the background drone, exciting things to a state of pleasant allure. The guitar returns, this time in both acoustic and electric modes, generating an understated jazz sentiment to the pulsating electronics. Before the piece concludes, the electronics get the chance to flourish with almost piercing clarity.

The electronics swing into a distinctly cinematic flair in the next piece, as the sashaying backdrop tones ring with a crisper resonance, replacing somber drones with majestic chords. Grinding effects and almost reluctant rhythms add a tasty depth to the piece.

Track six tempers gently growling electronics with livelier keyboard threads. While these bouncy keys evolve into a rolling tempo, the electronics surge with insightful luster, creating a melodic buoyancy.

Dreamy tones and tender guitar mark the last song as a peaceful coda to the album.



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Review of RETURN TO OTHER WORLDS
by Aural Innovations (April 2013)


This 2 disc release is Dan Pound's third re-master project from older material. Dan describes his music as ambient electronic, tribal-ethnic, new age, shamanic space music and I can't disagree with that!! Disc One: SPIRIT CALLER: Sounds like the title, Native American peyote circle music but also very controlled and precise, with nice production. The music sounds perfect along with the thunderstorm that is rolling thru my neighborhood at the moment! OTHER WORLDS: Some uptempo drum machine oddness on this one. Conjurs Herbie Hancock electronic weirdness. Some nice didgeridoo, yes, very nice!! My wife Sharon (vocalist in Book of Shadows) said so just as I was writing this!! These tracks could go on another 15 minutes without being boring! SORCERER'S CHAMBER: More ambience, like a sorcerer would prefer? Some nice (female?) vocals. Tasty synth drones' gets livelier as it goes on. Weird sparse percussion. Sounds a bit dated but that's probably because it's from 2004-2006. NIGHT WHISPERS: More creepy space coolness with (male?) chant vocals. For some reasons this reminds me of the Fellini movie Satyricon! Meditative magical space music. What more could one ask for?! Sharon gives this CD two thumbs up! LAST GENERATION/DREAM CIRCLE: More lovliness, onward thru the fog' the title Dream Circle is intriguing' droney driving space weirdness with percussion. The perfect CD to bust out for yer next peyote ritual!! ELEMENTAL TRACES: More "modern" uptempo with casio sounding drum machine along with some tasty guitar. For me this track is more New Agey and therefore a bit less interesting than the other tracks but still nice. Some jazzy piano doodle. COLLIDING MEMORIES: Back to the eternal drone and then the percussion. The thunderstorm has blown thru and the dogs are asleep, the music has done it's job! Nice track, similar to previous music but also quite different' a bit of mid 70′s Tangerine Dream to it. THUNDER VOICES: Sharon gives it 5 out of 5 stars' more of the same, truly starts to take you to another world' becomes one long piece of music. I'm grateful it's not marred by sung lyrics. BENEATH THIS WORLD: Quiet stillness, very Tibetan, very atmospheric, mood setting' strange cool chants' "we could plan a murder or start a religion", as JDM said' Yes! More, More, More. RETURN: Definitely music that would be conducive to magical rituals. This one conjurs movie soundtrackness. It would be interesting to hear the drums mixed down on some of these tracks; the drums that sound obviously drum machiney. LAST WAVE (THE): More drone and percussion atmospherics. An appropriate closer. The longest track on disc one. I'd be interested to know what Dan's spiritual beliefs are because he definitely has some' like going thru a long tunnel to the center of the earth.

DISC 2: PURE FLOW/SHAMAN'S PATH: Piano and other world loveliness with chanty vocals and percussive rhythm; ethereal and primal at the same time! Pretty cool. Dan Pound seems to be a very sincere artist who is exploring unknown realms of philosophy and sound. FINDING MY WAY: Out there; pure space joy with some Dan Pound. HORIZON'S EDGE/DOOR BEYOND TIME: More drone rhythm and and percussion. Has the Native American vibe. You have to slow yourself down to absorb this music' yes, return to other worlds. One thing I've noticed about this music is that it makes much more sense late at night on a drive thru the country. WAY TO ECSTASY: Whoa, it's funky, like Low Rider or something but quickly becomes New Age tribal, an odd mixture! Kinda like a boogie down with crystals!! But in a good way!! Goes like this straight thru, like a loop! A loud cicada through a part of it' and then quieter and quieter. HEART INTO SOUL: Percussive snappiness with a layer of Dan Poundness on top' gets a little samey but a good samey!! Nice vocals, guitar and flute?!! ALWAYS THE LIGHT: A droner, this one! Ah, you can do so much with a drone. Yes, it's quite lovely!! My wife Sharon says it's "Very pretty"!! WARMTH INSIDE: Another meditative piece, then some loud piano. Very sound tracky but not sound tacky!!! RISING HEAT: Back to the Tangerine Dream riffage with tinkling new agey piano. Intense and mellow at the same time. NEAR THE END: Starts very quiet and into military drummage with spacey overtones! Yes, very nice! Short and sweet. LAST WALTZ: Spacey lazy and yes, waltzy. All of Dan's music is very well recorded and conducive to multiple listens; about the highest compliment I give!! ARRIVAL: The last track of this double disc release and it's a slow spacey one. So far' ambient floating lovliness' Sharon says "Dan Pound!!! Very impressive".

For more information visit the Dan Pound web site at: http://www.danpound.com

Reviewed by Carlton Crutcher

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Review of RETURN TO OTHER WORLDS
by Morpheus Music (Oct 2012)


Ambient and ambient groove retrospective.
Return To Other Worlds by definition presents the full range of beguiling ambient styles employed by Dan Pound over the past decade: there are dreamy tribal environments flowing with silken smoothness among ethnic voices and lazy, padding drum tracks; up-tempo compositions where bright electronica burbles upon throaty didgeridoo drones; serene new-age piano melodies that tinkle against a rich worldbeat and distant chants.
Disc one opens with a twilight wilderness atmosphere where boiling synthetic textures roll in layers upon nature noises and shifting shakers - deep sonorous drum booms and breathy flute bursts punctuate the heavy air. Stick and hand drumming fuse with electro-beats driving the music through three pieces taken from Other Worlds. Return is next explored, with global flavours increasing in presence both though percussion and instrumentation - clanging bells and chimes reverberate against a heady cloud of synthetic sound; again three tracks. Door Beyond Time provides another trio of pieces that allow the darkness to thicken increasingly toward the title track of Return and Last Wave seeing the disc conclude with an uneasy feeling - strange impacts cracking amid a restless stick-driven rhythm.
The second CD opens with wandering harp and dramatic piano - a murmuring voice beckoning a Middle-eastern influenced beat. Beautiful synth washes and dynamic drumming open the panoramic vision wide, drifting drones and lilting harmonies at times carrying the listener skyward. Here are excerpts from Heart's Core, Horizon, Door Beyond Time, Return and In A Hummingbird's Dream - not grouped according to source as on the first disc, but laid out as a journey of unfolding wonder.



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Review of RETURN TO OTHER WORLDS
by Hypnagogue (Sept 2012)

As other artists have done recently, Dan Pound reaches into his musical closet and blows the dust off 22 tracks from five earlier albums recorded between 2004 and 2006. Remixed and remastered, the pieces on this two-disc retrospective run from guttural tribal ambient to classically soft ambient flows to rhythmic New Age. Pound arranges the pieces to take the listener in and out of these various zones with a sense of narrative. It also imparts, for the new Pound listener, an understanding of the breadth of talent at work here. The first disc sets itself up as tribally themed early on, and sticks with it for much of the disc. Three tracks from the Other Worlds CD kick it off with some spot-on work, with clacking stick percussion, hollow-cave atmospheres and deep chants. The title track from Other Worlds takes it uptempo with cool sequenced beat and snaky, echoing curls of didgeridoo. Three tracks from Return follow; here the tribal feel shifts to more of a world/ethnic flavor, picking up Middle Eastern spice. It's an interesting way to keep the listen in this sort of electro-shamanic space but to distinguish movement within the journey. The shifting in style continues until we find ourselves in the graceful New Age piano of "Elemental Traces," the light and airy melody washing off the sandy dust of our prior excursions. Tracks from Door Beyond Time come next, exhibiting a well-balanced blend of spacious ambient and more rich tribal/shamanic vibes. "Thunder Voices" resonates with the feel of potent medicine; big drums and tribal singing fill the space. Pound opens a dark space and ushers us through it in "Beneath This World," a slow-moving and extremely atmospheric piece that's eerily lit, its shadows thickly populated with uncertainty. The didgeridoo work here is perfect for the worrisome place Pound is describing. Disc one closes out in fairly dark territory courtesy two ominous tracks from Return. "Last Wave" grinds along on growing percussion and weighty low-end drones, managing to get deeper and murkier as it goes. A great end to the first part.

At the outset, disc two would appear to chart a similar course; the Heart's Core and Horizon tracks that kick it off have a nice shamanic feel. The drums in "Finding My Way" carve out a hypnotizing rhythm over lush, calming drones. Pound's voice eases in above the sound-this is a great flow that's loaded with emotion. Pound bends the flow toward rhythmic electronica with "Horizon's Edge." This piece has a very familiar feel that I just can't put a name to. (The tribal stuff rings with Pound's influence from Steve Roach, speaking of which.) The second half of this track, the title track from Door Beyond Time, has a wide, cinematic sense that puts me in mind of Jeff Grienke's later work, or much of the stuff released on Spotted Peccary. It's got a distinct voice, and it's talking about some broad, lovely vista. Pound takes the percussion and stuffs it into the distance, which is a great treatment. It's there, but it takes on a windy, indistinct feel that lets the quieter tones glimmer. The joyful "Way to Ecstasy" is another world-style piece fueled by uptempo drumming and a high, flute-like melody. Infectiously pleasant! This segues neatly into a stretch of quieter pieces, beginning with the easy downtempo flow of "Heart Into Soul." This is best described as just a laid-back and beautiful instrumental. Touches of guitar come through, singing in a high, sighing voice, and an unhurried beat keeps time. "Warmth Inside" blends piano with long synth pads in a piece that straddles the line between ambient and New Age. "Last Waltz" is another piece with a familiar sound, a fairly simple and understated, burbling melody that's absolutely enchanting. "Arrival" from Door Beyond Time closes the set with lush flute over rich pads, a warm and introspective sound.

This review is longer than I prefer to write in most cases, but there is so much going on over the course of Return to Other Worlds, so many tracks that absolutely hit the target and hit it hard, that it's not easy to avoid wanting to say something about most of them. The tribal stuff is as smoky and serpentine as Roach's best; the New Age work is vivid and filled with story; and every track is loaded with depth. This is an excellent primer on Pound's work, and really just a sampling of his prodigious output. But if this two-disc set doesn't make you a Pound fan, nothing will. A superb release, and a must-listen.


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Review of RETURN TO OTHER WORLDS
by Sonic Immersion (Sept 2012)


"Return to Other Worlds" is a commemorative retrospective double-album by US-composer Dan Pound, and also his third re-master project based on older material . This package covers the six albums ("Other Worlds", "Return", "In a Hummingbird´s Dream", "Heart´s Core" , "Horizon" and "Door Beyond Time") that were released from the years 2004 through 2006.

It offers over two hours of tribal/ethnic ambient, new age and shamanic space music from Dan's early catalog, now presenting complete tracks among edits with all new mixes, sonic enhancements and is completely remastered.

So if you're not familiar with the output of this American composer, "Return to Other Worlds" is a proper introduction to his work. In addition, it is also most suitable for all those who already know Pound´s early music, as it offers the opportunity to revisit the older material, but now executed and put forward in a brand-new, far more spacious and detailed sound design.




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Review of RETURN TO OTHER WORLDS
by Sonic Curiosity (Sept, 2012)

This release from 2012 features 139 minutes of tribal/spacey electronic music.

More than just a retrospective compilation, this release remasters material from a selection of Pound�s early releases (Other Worlds, Return, In a Hummingbird�s Dream, Horizon, Hearts Core, and Door Beyond Time) from 2004 through 2005, presenting the music in a new mode. Pound plays: lots of tribal rhythms, an arsenal of analog and digital synths, guitars, shamanic and overtone voice, ethnic percussion, Native American flutes, and didgeridoo. The music belongs to several genres: ambient, tribal-ethnic, and shamanic space music.

The electronics are (understandably) diverse. Texturals establish airy foundations, upon which more pronounced electronics generate undulating melodies. While keyboards are employed, a percentage of the electronics manifest as sidereal effects or auxiliary pulsations. Pound tends to blend bloops with dreamy oscillations, keeping the flow fresh and entertaining.

The percussives are equally variegated. Tribal rhythms and ethnic beats proliferate the music, while other tracks see the use of more conventional tempos. The cyclic application of non-impact electronics also contribute rhythms. Consequently, some tracks feature languid tempos of a remote nature, while others host snappier tempos of a more modern mode. Either way, the result is tasty.

The flutes lend eerie resonance with their breathy issue, just as the didgeridoo provides even more haunted airs with its unearthly drones.

The guitars are well hidden amid the flow, and often disguised as stranger electronic stylings.

The vocals (of a non-lyrical nature) lend the music an organic mien with their spectral moans drifting amid the atmospheric electronics.

As expected with a collection of music spanning several years, this release cannot be given a single description. The tribal pieces evoke an antediluvian attitude with plodding tempos and atmospheric textures wafting overhead. The ambient tracks concentrate on harmonic auralscapes, ethereal passages designed to promote introspection. The spacier songs convey the listener to a realm of bouncier tuneage wherein the electronics surge with celestial puissance. Difficult if one is looking to unify the music into a sole classification, but then Pound�s creativity has never allowed itself to remain stagnant, frequently mixing and flickering between diverse genres. There is, however, a common aspect to his music: a sense of mesmerizing wonder, a tendency to communicate the existence of unknown mysteries. This sense of wonder is quite vivid and entirely rewarding.

On one hand: this release provides listeners with an excellent introduction to Pound�s music. On another hand: fans will applaud the opportunity to hear songs from his early (long out-of-print) albums. No matter which way you want to view it, this release is worthwhile investigating�and enjoying.


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Review of COCOON
by Aural-Innovations (August, 2012)


Until the day I received this Dan Pound CD, I've never even remotely heard of him before. I looked around on the Internet some and discovered that this musician from Santa Rosa, California had several (many, in fact) other titles out and available. Cocoon is Pound's 12th CD. Now that I've heard some sound bites of a few of his other discs like Medusazoa (2011), Living Planet (2009) and Medicine Bag (2006) I now realize that some of his work now goes on my current ...want list'. On Cocoon, Dan Pound plays mostly analog gear, ethnic instruments and guitar. Tracks that definitely make this CD a keeper are the 15-minute opener title cut Cocoon which defines ...new age electronic' in its own right (at least, I thought so), the beautiful Starting To Change (is that a wooden flute I hear?), the almost-mesmerizing 14-minute Life Stages, the superbly produced Transmutate and Emerge. After I gave this disc a second spin, I believe I got more out of the closer - the 12-minute epic Release. Have to admit that with this particular genre, the tunes that possess the longer durations are likely the best songs that the given artist or band has to offer their listeners. Overall, Cocoon is a 65-minute mind elevating journey of tranquil ambient music soundscape that one must / should get themselves in the right mood to properly enjoy before putting it into their stereo or CD player. Some big-time ambient / new age enthusiasts will likely say that these tracks aren't songs - that they're compositions. I tend to agree with that. Recommended for fans of Robert Rich, Brian Eno, Steve Roach, Michael Steams, Tangerine Dream and Vangelis. I personally know several people that will likely get even more out of this title than I did and I would give it a four-and-a-half stars out of five rating. A true music work of art.

Reviewed by Mike Reed



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Review of COCOON
by Sonic Curiosity (April, 2012)


This CD from 2011 features 65 minutes of pleasant electronic music.

Pleasant electronics are used to create tunes that cleverly balance between contemporary electronic music and ambient music.

The electronics are gentle, yet tinged with a degree of crisp animation. Textural flows occupy the background, providing atmospheric drones for the auxiliary threads which delineate the melodies.

Keyboards drive a percentage of the electronics, crafting melodies of a sedately relaxing nature. Many of the chords possess a hint of spry pep, just enough to elevate the tunes from the status of an auralscape and provide them with a tasty proportion of substantiality.

Flutes are employed to flavor some of the tracks with a wistful dreaminess.

A few pieces feature stringed instruments which contribute delicate enhancement. Non-lyrical vocal tones also punctuate some of the tracks, injecting a human presence. The periodic presence of a didgeridoo seasons some pieces with a haunting edge.

Some percussion is present. These gentle rhythms lend beats without forcing any propulsion upon the tunes.

These compositions are designed to facilitate contemplation. There is a balanced offering of longform pieces (wherein the music is afforded suitable chance to unfurl at an unhurried pace and generate lavish vistas of peaceful sonic tapestries) and shorter pieces (in which the music's progression is compressed to a honed state). The music evokes a soothing disposition occasionally tempered with traces of amiable activity.

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Review of COCOON
by Hypnagogue (March, 2012)


I didn't expect, when I first started up Dan Pound's new release, Cocoon, that I'd find myself coursing along alternate currents of hushed and chilled ambient, Native American-influenced meditations, old-school sequencer runs and smiling grooves that gave a quick nod to, of all things, Enigma. But all these elements are here and they come together in a virtually effortless flow. I have to admit that at first listen I was slightly put off by Pound's occasional use of dense synth drumbeats that felt a little too "techno"-or, more accurately, too dull of a sound given everything else at play. Over repeat listens, however, they seemed to slot themselves somewhat more comfortably into place in the overall experience and I got what I typically get from Pound: a great ride that I come back to frequently. The title track begins the disc with gurgles and sighs, the mix of bubbling sequencer over long pads. Pound rides the dynamics across the piece's 15-minute stretch, interweaving light string sounds in quieter moments, emboldening the pads to a grumbling thickness, adding gentle nature sounds and, in the closing two minutes or so, dropping in a beat (again, the bass surprisingly heavy in comparison). The next two tracks, "Starting to Change" and "Life Stages," work in the Native American flute. In "Starting'" it"s paired simply against a club-ish backbeat. In the longer "Life Stages," it's befriended by a laid-back lounge feel and accented with chanting vocals. "Life Stages" is another of the long tracks here, so a shift is expected. It comes halfway in when Pound dismisses the beat for a calm stretch. When it returns-heavier-it brings along a bass pulse and twinkling electronics. (Cue your embedded Enigma memories.) A final shift comes in the last three minutes as shadows fall and Pound takes to the didgeridoo. Murky drifts, chanting vocals and the throaty, echoing curl of the didge distinctly change the feeling, "Transmutate" is a cloying undulation of sound, a bit of hold-your-breath darkness that is Pound at his most abstract. It ushers the listener into the last pair of tracks where the tone is definitely easier. "Emerge" is the old-school tribute here, an uptempo sequencer ride that lays down a cool base over which Pound floats more flute. (In spots the two seem a touch less harmonious, but it passes.) It's a great choice coming out of "Transmutate," this track instantly proving lighter, the effect amplified by the comparison. The disc closes with the cleansing, joyful,12-minute-long "Release." Sweeping, classic ambient washes start it off, calm pads and windy rushes. A whistling melody arcs high overhead. Strong spacemusic overtones run through this one. Sit quietly in the closing minutes and let Pound's structures carve themselves around you, the sound simplifying and silencing. Truly the best track here.

Although Cocoon is the first Dan Pound disc I haven't immediately dropped totally into and loved, it has definitely stated its case across repeat listens. Its strong points decidedly outweigh what small quibbles I might have with Dan's choice of percussion. A good addition to a fine catalog of ambient music.



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Review of COCOON
from Sonic Immersion (Feb, 2012)


The 65-minutes of tranquil music that make-up "Cocoon", that depicts a sequence of events and transmutations of the life stages of a cocoon and chrysalis into a butterfly, once more prove that Mr Pound is a follower of Steve Roach. It's introspective music about transformation, embarking on gentle textural and unhurried ambient/space journeys with tribal touches that enters imaginary, dreamy worlds.

It's rather strange though some faint guitar lingerings and shamanic voices form the distracting elements in the presented picture frame of smooth evolving atmospheres and light pulse sequences that make up the 15-minute title track found at the start.
Soft calling flute tones and light rhythms occasionally enter the stage on the following six meditative and serene compositions, an outcome Dan Pound describes as a shamanic new age musical soundscape.

I for one would have loved Dan left out these extra elements, giving room to only the ebb and flow of expansive lush textural landscapes and the pulse tapestries. It seems this message finally gets through on the final piece "Release".

"Cocoon" is available as factory-pressed cd or in MP3 digital format.

© Bert Strolenberg

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Review of MEDUSAZOA
by Expose'

Dan Pound is a California based ambient electronic and new age composer. He has been featured on Hearts of Space and Stars End among other shows. Medusazoa is a collection of seven blissful and floating ambient journeys into your inner consciousness, flowing and drifting at the whim of ocean currents. This is pure underwater dream zone music based around the graceful and angelic movements of jellyfish. If you have ever seen a jellyfish display at an aquarium, you will begin to appreciate the delicateness of this music. Expansive, slow moving, and poly-sequential rhythms are built up from Pound's array of analog and digital synths, guitars, effects, processors, and sound shaping equipment. Medusazoa is not a disc you would pop into your car stereo for a road trip, unless you were planning to use autopilot. Instead this is meditation music, perfect for zoning out after a stressful day, much like the therapeutic effects of watching fish swim. It would work equally well for star-gazing parties. Plus there is enough variety between the seven tracks to avoid boring the listener.




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Review of MEDUSAZOA
by Progressive Rock Central (March 2012)

American synthesist Dan Pound takes you on a fascinating underwater immersion with his latest CD, Medusazoa. The album is dedicated to the graceful movement and vibrant bio-luminescence of jellyfish flowing and drifting with the ocean currents. It contains a series of tranquil ambient pieces with distant hypnotic pulses, dreamy drones, and flowing atmospheres.

A few years ago, during a music conference, I had the opportunity to visit the National Aquarium in Baltimore (Maryland). At the time, they had a temporary jellyfish exhibit and I stood for minutes, mesmerized, watching the strangely beautiful bio-luminescent creatures. Medusazoa captures that sensation and would make a great soundtrack companion to such an exhibit.

Dan Pound used analog modular synth drones, patches and effects to make Medusazoa with the intent of making ...pure underwater dream zone music.'

Medusazoa is a fine example of atmospheric electronic music by one of the current talents in the ambient music scene.

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Review of Medusazoa
From Aural Innovations #43 (October 2011)

Atmospheric sound creation is at the fundamental core of Medusazoa. It is ambient and slow paced throughout, its synthesized structures are minimal and etheric, as they play with the concept of underwater environments, revealing the aquatic dreams of the jellyfish and the sombreness of the willick, as if it were only yesterday that I mingled amongst them with my seaweed helmet and cockleshell shield, meditating in the kelp forrests stoned! Yes, we've all been there! Haven't we?

The sound in question is totally synthesizer based, and it throws out similarities to later era Klaus Schulze more so than it does to Tangerine Dream, and even though there is an essence of Tangerine Dream I feel that it sits better with good old Klaus. There is a subtleness of tone that evolves from start to finish, and headphones, I feel, are a must because of this as it is the way that nature intended. It also guaranties the listener the journey that they so desire without the distractions of the outside world. The production is very good and on the whole it is an interesting venture and concept. I like it.

Dan Pound has captured a feel here that is very meditative and subduing and has produced a CD worthy of nods from even the most hardcore of synthesizer fiends. He has taken the basis of drone and took it somewhere outside that mindset, which for me is a must as certain drone music cannot escape the drone. Medusazoa certainly escapes the drone over its 70 minutes or so and moves into beat and composition, repetitive as it may be, but that is no hardship. You may feel you have already heard this track within the last track, but that is the subtleness of its evolution. No wild changes in sound here, just one steady journey from the beginning to the end. Nice work.


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Sonic Curiosity review of MEDUSAZOA
June 2011


This release from 2011 offers 71 minutes of gently pulsating electronic music.

While Pound's releases usually feature a mixture of natural (albeit ethnic) instruments with hard technology, this time his gear is exclusively synthesizers.

The electronics are soft and enticing. Harmonic textures blend with a series of auxiliary electronic pulsations to create a melodic vista of submerged definition. The tonalities are soft, yet display a sneaky sense of power, the type of influence that by the time you notice it you are deeply bewitched by the ethereal environs.

Ah, but it's not all swaying tones. Keyboards are utilized to flavor the commodious passages with touches of sinuous grace. A few pieces are blessed by celestial piano. But the music's strength invariably resides in the interplay of sighing atmospherics and how the lead chords often mirror their exquisite substantiality.

Percussion is generally absent, leaving most of the tracks to shine as pensive structures of rarefied air. While one track does feature percussion (albeit soft), most tempos take the form of chittering effects that lend ticking punctuation from their carefully immersed vantage.

The compositions are inspired by the fluidity and luminosity of jellyfish, and the tunes excellently reflects that intention. The music's aquatic nature is subtly enhanced by watery effects hiding in the mix. A satisfying immersion is in store for all.



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Hypnagogue review of MEDUSAZOA
April, 27'th 2011


April 27, 2011
by Hypnagogue

Prolific ambient composer Dan Pound sets out to capture the grace of jellyfish in his latest release, Medusazoa. He hits the mark, but don't expect this to be just a long stretch of burbling, fluid pads of balletic invertebrate motion. They're here, and the first three minutes of the opener, "Liquid Body," would have you think that's the case, but then, quietly, Pound begins to fleck the surface with pinprick hits of percussion and we're off into interesting territory. There's a mix of textures at play on Medusazoa. Microbeats, backbeats, sequencer rhythms, guitar work and more find way into Pound's pieces here, and everything glides into place without rippling the waters. There's a feeling of balance to the flow; "Liquid Body," with its microbeats, melts slowly into the classic ambient track, "Under Her Spell," which then opens into the tick-tock'ing sequenced start of "Living Fossil"-but under the rhythm are slow-moving pads. So each new step comes off as a sensible move and nothing is jarring. It all works. The title track contains an interesting blend of sounds. A poky piano melody one-notes its way around synth structures for a few minutes, then takes a short break while Pound gets a little dark. Watery sounds gurgle underneath. A beat rises up and the piano returns, all the elements landing in a strange but intriguing meld that eventually fades into very quiet drones. Pound breaks out his Fender Strat in the 14-minute "Tentacles," mixing processed chord cries (very Roach-like in their feel) with patient, straightforward playing. The backdrop, shadowy and a trifle tense, offers a counterpoint. "Bioluminescence" comes back to a basic-feeling waveform ambient motif, rising and falling pads set alongside angelic chords. The closer, "Currents," has a watery shimmer accented with electronic bubbles, a warm flow that brings the listener back around to the start. Should go without saying that Medusazoa gets played on loop. It's a great wind-down listen, offering more than just standard ambient constructs while still packing that spacious/spacey feel. Deep listens are amply rewarded, but Medusazoa is also one that should be allowed to fill the space. Another superb outing from Pound.



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Morpheus Music review of MEDUSAZOA
March 2011


Smooth, oceanic ambient electronica.
Medusazoa is an album of warm, fluid, mostly beatless synth environments. Drifting pads and velvety drones waft and mass around emergent pulse formations and rhythmic digital fragments. Liquid clicks and flecks trickle against synthetic vibrations or burble alongside repeating motifs; lazy scale patterns meander upward, downward; peculiar disturbances rustle and murmur and there are occasional sussurant flushes of turbulence. A downtempo beat arises midway through the title track, lazy and uncluttered; beguiling watery purring sounds cycling around. Some tracks centre mostly on the ponderous heave of layered drones, the flutter and flicker of rhythmic ephemera deep within. Others have subtle melodic elements: hypnotically repeating motifs; sparse piano phrases, electric guitar touches; these buoyant centres of regularity suspended in sequential tides or wandering afloat through ambient densities.

The title track opens with a luminous, repeating synthetic chime motif echoing upon an undulating low drone. Soon the melodic repetition drops off and an ambient bed opens out as if the listener has strayed into deeper water. Here a variation on the previous motif begins to well up with more of a piano sound, evolving and meandering until a second evaporation. Now a distinctly different liquid environment emerges that is more suggestive of surface water or at least of the presence of trapped air: laps and splashes rippling about a sibilant purring noise that recurrs in organic pairings establishing a loose rhythm. Drifting piano notes once more provide intriguing melody, deep single tones and lazy higher runs. At around this mid point of the twelve minutes fifty three seconds of Medusazoa a serene beat fades in, simple hihats, programmed snare and lazy kick building around the nodding measure of the pulsing purr. For a while now this dreamy rhythmic pool of lilting piano melody floats in blissful reverie until the beat ebbs away at around the nine and a half minute mark. The purring remains a while upon a much more distant memory of percussion, reverberating piano phrases thinning out upon a low drone echoing the introduction until stillness. A very relaxing composition, highly evocative of the underwater environment Dan is summoning up and the delicate life forms upon which this album concentrates.


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Sonic Immersion review of MEDUSAZOA
April, 2011


With the music of his album "Medusazoa", on which work was started in July 2010, it seems Mr Pound is trying to come closer to the sound of Steve Roach.

The seven tracks feature so-called underwater dream zone music, based and built from analog modular synth drones, patches and effects, made to accompany the fluid movements and colorful bio-luminescence of the jellyfish as it gently moves through the streams.

The free form textural movements on "Medusazoa" are characterized by a strong organic undercurrent, smoothly drifting along with crustacean-like effects and poly-sequential, fractal rhythms and pulses. In addition, the unhurried, chill-out atmosphere of liquid ambient spheres occasionally feels like a living organism, especially on the the 12-minute title track.

All in all, "Medusazoa" is a chill-out soundscape release.

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Aural Innovations review of WOLF MOON and AURORA
May, 2011

From Aural Innovations #42 (May 2011)

Northern California composer Dan Pound makes a very personal music, like painterly sketches of landscapes and natural phenomena whose intimate detail and expansive scope reveal not only the eye of the artist but his soul, as well. On both Wolf Moon and Aurora, Pound's debt to new age soundscaping and tribal spiritualism is made evident by his choice of instrumentation, including an array of synthesizers, flutes, didgeridoo, Native American percussion, and guitar. And while Pound clearly has his influences, they're submerged in such a way that they only evoke half-remembered echoes deep below the surface of his music. Wolf Moon resonates with nocturnal ambiences, inky textures and haunting sound silhouettes, placing the listener within the very heart of the sonic terrain Pound ably explores. Tracks like "Watching Through Trees" and "Unknown Territory" remind one instantly of the mystery and melancholy of Popol Vuh's soundtracks to various Werner Herzog films throughout the 70s. A deeply meditative calm pervades such tracks with their crescendo of percussion and their ritualistic flutes. Sequencer-driven pieces such as "Always on the Run" and "Making Tracks" careen through an enveloping mist of hovering synthesizers, environmental samples and chanting voices. "Making Tracks," in particular, illustrates Pound's deft control of his art, its wholly static sequencer ostinato serving as counterpoint to shimmering curtains of modulated pads and a haunting lead synth line that dissolves through the mix like quicksilver moonlight on a wintry crystal lake. The futurist tribal aesthetic of both "Ancient Spirit" and the title track combine percussion, electronics, flute, didgeridoo and spectral voices into mantra-like s�ances that merge the listener into the sounding silences of shadow and self.

If Wolf Moon echoes the chiaroscuro of nature's inmost resonances, then Aurora telescopes its transitory beauty into a gallery of shifting, impressionistic sonic portraits. The exquisitely crafted title track is like a slowly evolving canvas of shimmering hues and glittering pastels splashed across a star-swept sky. Intertwining lead synth phrases materialize out of a modular drone, sparkle momentarily and then melt imperceptibly into a translucent sheen of icy strings and glassy electronic textures. Tracks like "Northern Lights" and "Polaris" further illustrate Pound's debt, though not necessarily fealty, to some of the past masters of ambient sound construction (Steve Hillage's Rainbow Dome Musick, Steve Roach's Structures from Silence, and Don Robertson's Starmusic all come to mind immediately), and while not always trail-blazing, his contribution to the genre is both earnest and authentic. Honed to a fine crystalline beauty, "Polaris" drifts on wide washes of synthetic strings and a pulsating undertow of low-frequency tones that conveys Pound's vision of harmonic resolution in our increasingly chaotic and dissonant world.

For more info, visit: http://www.danpound.com

Reviewed by Charles Van de Kree


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Hypnagogue review of AURORA
March, 2011

Aurora is, as the title would lead you to suspect, a suite of shimmering drifts full of star-glisten and spacewind. The flows here are filled with sounds that arc toward the skies and ease their way back down. Pound has a fascinating sense of depth and layering that creates complex interplay between his rise-and-fall creations. And with every track there's a little something more added to the mix. The title track has a short stretch of drumming toward the end, playing to Pound's shamanic-music side; "True North" goes heavy on the drama-thick chords and hesitant, hanging pauses bringing a sense of expectation; "Wind Calling" features some slow and soulful guitar playing off the underlying bass drifts; "Under Stars" grows upward from sparseness, beginning with twittering night-sounds to encompass a glittering canopy. As with all of Pound's work, the imagery and emotion in Aurora is strong and certain. The subtle shifts pique the listener's interest throughout-although you'll likely be content to just drift through it. More superb stuff from Pound.




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Sonic Immersion review of AURORA
Feb, 2011

This release from 2010 offers 64 minutes of shimmering electronic ambience.

Dedicated to the moods generated by atmospheric manifestations of light, this music communicates an airy flair that frequently shimmers with tenuous electronic embellishment.

The electronics tend to be gentle and flowing, often relying on texturals to achieve harmonic layers of vast expansion. These auralscapes are tempered by additional traceries whose more-prominent-but-still-understated definition serve to maintain the music's overall serenity. Wisps of melody slither through this ambience, teasing the listener's psyche with their glistening activity.

While controlled tonalities dominate this tuneage, keyboard electronics are present, serving as fanciful enhancements which lend rarefied substance to the floating compositions.

The application of deeper-voiced electronics produce a moody density that laces the darkness with elusive illumination.

One track features a lazy guitar whose chords ride breezy currents amid chilly vapors of soft electronic oscillations.

These compositions achieve a delicate beauty in their expert approximation of airborne displays of light. The music perfectly stimulates introspection while promoting a tendency to watch the sky, allowing the listener to color that vista with their own imagination.




http://www.soniccuriosity.com/sc485.htm


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Sonic Immersion review of AURORA
Dec, 2010


"Aurora" is a cosmic ambient album containing nine atmospheres, which is not as textural as one might expect. Dan's aural landscape are expansive but also rather active in nature.
This recording dips into the pool of serene, surreal and reflective soundscapes with a meditative touch (e.g. "Northern Lights", "Magnetic Pull", "True North") while, frame drum pulses and ethereal vocal pads comes to the surface in the opening title track.

It's no pure drift music though, as Dan implements all kind of sound bits and pieces in his tracks to enhance the overall sound spectrum. The latter also could have sounded a bit warmer and more polished to my taste.

"Aurora", recommended by the composer for low volume playback in repeat mode and perfect for the Winter Soltice, blends the mysterious, atmospheric and the chilling side of free form ambient music.

The album is available through the usual digital stores online next to Dan's own website.


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Sonic Curiosity review of WOLF MOON
Oct, 2010

This release from 2010 offers 57 minutes of lupine electronic music.

Dan Pound plays: didgeridoo, flutes, voice, various analog and digital synthesizers, ocarina, shamanic percussion, samplers, field recordings, and sound shaping through various hardware processors and mixers.

This time Pound applies his musical focus to the essence of being a wolf. From that creature's environment to its habits to its spirit, he has captured each nuance with appealing exactitude.

While the electronics retain an ethereal delicacy, they still manage to express a sense of unbridled freedom, capturing the beast on the prowl as easily as they do the wolf sedately surveying its prairie domain. Throbbing texturals bestow those territories with expansive properties, as dark pulsations approximate a pensive nocturnal environment.

Winsome flutes contribute an airy disposition to this panoramic outlook. A sense of spiritual reverence is generated by the presence of breathy didgeridoo and shamanic chants, not to mention the ritual beats of distant percussives.

Several tracks put the listener on the move, riding along with the wolf as it races through the night. Softly urgent electronics instill a compelling sense of constant motion.

These melodic compositions are elegant and powerful. The instruments generate lavish soundscapes of prairie splendor, moody and evocative. There is a fine balance of predatory tunes and ambient auralscapes, each track offering vital stimulation to portions of the listener's psyche.

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Hypnagogue review of INTERLACE
Jan, 2011


Dan Pound, Interlace
January 20, 2011
by Hypnagogue

One of the things that continues to strike me about the ambient and electronic genre is that for a sector of the musical world as fairly narrow in appeal as it is (excusing, for a moment, club/dance music) it's quite deep. As I make my own way through it as a reviewer, I constantly come across musicians who, while new to me, have been toiling away at it for a while and in many cases have built a respectable following. Then, having found them for myself and if I like them, I set about scooping up the stuff I've missed, feeling somewhat silly that I missed them in the first place.

Such is the case with Dan Pound. Upon first listening to his 2010 release, Interlace, my initial reaction was, "Why haven't I heard of this guy before?" Then I went to his web site and saw the list of about 35 releases and I felt even more like a dummy. With that first listen, however, Pound launched into my consciousness as an artist to whom I needed to pay attention.

Interlace starts out with a strong spacemusic feel-dribbling bits of electronics, solar wind effects, bass rumbles. It touches on darkness (the first track's title, "Fade to Black," might have been a clue) but possesses an interesting expectancy-a sense of impending light, if you will. There comes a moment in the third track, "Rare Refraction," where the meaning of the CD title suddenly becomes clear-along with Pound's intent. The track begins with piano over synth washes, curling down into a rhythmic electronic tangle balanced on a twanging beat. Out of this rises a flute, blowing a strong Native American-influenced song. Here is the interlace, the point where old meets new, ancient meets modern, organic meets technical to achieve a wholeness. The effect is enhanced by its coming after a solid half-hour of pure electronic worldcrafting. We have been brought deep inside ourselves to be reminded whence we came-and then we glide back out with "Point of the Laser," where rich pads give way to a sequencer pulse and tidal-pull waveforms. From here Pound keeps things modern with the glitchy feel of "Shadow Screen" and the complex angles and whispers of "Inside the Crystal." Through it all, though, the memory of that moment, that brief glimpse through the gap between worlds, remains. It's quite a trip. Interlace is a Hypnagogue Highly Recommended CD.

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Aural Innovations review of INTERLACE
Oct, 2010



From Aural Innovations #41 (October 2010)

Though unfamiliar with any of Pound's previous work, it's clear after hearing Interlace why this California-based musician/producer fits into the post-new age coterie of West Coast soundscapers. Pound's lengthy compositions spiral out into the uncharted vistas beyond the galactic rim, drifting as they do on long washes of synthesizer and processed guitar, though he incorporates a variety of other sounds, including mutated multi-samples, flute, and sundry tribal percussion instruments. The effect is somewhere between Steve Roach, Carlos Nakai and the Orb. There is a darker edge, however, to Pound's new age aesthetic that is in many ways much closer to some of Robert Rich's more disturbing, apocalyptic work (A Troubled Resting Place comes to mind immediately as an analog to some of the tracks on Interlace), a direction which is fully explored on the 16-minute title track with its low-frequency modular drones, machine-like syncussion and majestically gloomy string pads. And like any self-respecting new age composer, Pound is capable of creating sonic atmospheres of pure stasis, while avoiding the obvious trap of rhythmic and harmonic monotony. The delicate transparent sheen of Rare Refraction hovering just above a rumbling undertow of modulated low-frequency oscillations is paradigmatic of Pound's approach to sound and structure: a conscious synchronization of the subliminal and the spiritual. Pound rarely departs from this well-defined palette of tonal colors but because of the seamless nature of the individual tracks on Interlace, the listener can simply merge into its steady state flow. Even "edgier" tracks like Point of the Laser and Inside the Crystal, both of which feature more rhythmic propulsion and sharper sonic angles, seem equally at home on what is otherwise a collection of electro-acoustic largos for night marooned somnambulists. For this reason, Interlace is every bit the equal of work by similar sound architects with a more prestigious pedigree (the aforementioned Rich and Roach, for example). Acolytes of ambient fusion will almost certainly want to give Interlace a fair hearing.

For more information visit the Dan Pound web site at: http://www.danpound.com
Email at: danpound@danpound.com

Reviewed by Charles Van de Kree


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Sonic Curiosity review of INTERLACE
July 2010



Moody sounds are harnessed to achieve sparkling results on this album. The pieces tend to flow into each other, generating a sense of limitless space.

The first track blends dark atmospherics with agile pulsations, resulting in a haunting pastiche that seeps beyond the eardrums to saturate the cortex with lasting influence. The mood is pensive, yet uplifting, as the swaying textures tickle the blooping and chittering effects with their distinct buoyancy.

The next piece introduces clockwork elements that wobble amid a grinding drone that is nicely seasoned with piercing tones. The composition possesses a breathing inclination that remains resolute.

Delicate keyboards appear in the third track, injecting a softly melodic presence in the otherwise harmonic soundscape. Additional texturals enter the mix, swelling to command things and institute a moody flow that is tempered by auxiliary electronics of a nervous nature. Despite this subtle agitation, the music�s temperament remains sedate and pleasant.

Next, things adopt a growling edge as denser tonalities ebb into play. This sober foundation is enlivened by sprightly electronics which mount into an engaging ebullience that slowly rises into comfortable dominance and remains assertive for a while, coaxing the flow into an ambrosial ascension.

The fifth piece returns to a more introspective template as bass tones establish sluggish ripples traveling through a melange of haunting electronics and steadfast e-perc rhythms.

The final track introduces soulful flutes to the shadowy electronic flow. Glittering keyboards surface to vitalize the moodiness and help things evolve a more positive outlook for the dreamy finale.


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INTERLACE review by Electroambient Space
June 2010

Dan Pound returns with another in his unique brand of shamanic ambient electronic music. Though it still has his trademark organic washes of sound, Interlace is considerably more synthetic sounding than its predecessor The Fourth Way. Case in point is the mellow, bubbly opener "Fade To Black". The sequencing is low key and yet mesmerizing. Bright shimmering sounds interlace with low growling electronics on the 16-minute title track. The brisk but quiet electronics here remind me a lot of Steve Roach's album Proof Positive. The gentle floating nature of "Rare Refraction" is quite enjoyable, with sparse keys for added atmosphere. Percolating electronic grooves rise up again, followed later by a bit of flute, chanting, and soft tribal touches. Crisp, tinny percussion and amusing, bouncy synths adds a lighter touch to "Point of the Laser." "Shadow Screen" reminds me of the looping, slightly glitchy stuff that Vir Unis has done on recordings like Book Of Mutations and Mercury and Plastic. "Inside The Crystal" is a nice relaxing way to finish, with quirky electronics dancing about over the top of floating ambience.





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INTERLACE review by Sonic Immersion
June 2010

With "Interlace", California-based musician Dan Pounds adds another chapter to his series of ambient electronic, shamanic space music, which he likes to call musical medicine for the soul.

The outcome is an ambient voyage beyond the tangible world of matter while simultaneously reaching into the inner depths of ones personal psychic realm. Well, the surrealistic, dreamy impact is obvious in this long form work with atmospheric flavours, which comes in six separate pieces.

Moreover, the outcome are eclectic and deep symphonic ambient musings which gradually evolve, while searing drones and synth pads pass by with analogue sequencer pulses. This especially comes to the surface on the third "Rare Refraction", with its peculiar elevating effect and spectral sequencer patterns.

"Interlace" is for those who love deeper listening. Or to put it in Dan's own words: mind altering, mind bending, shape shifting, trance inducing soundworlds that are sure to take you on another other-worldly voyage.



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The Fourth Way review by Electroambient Space 2010


Dan Pound had quite the prolific 2009, The Fourth Way being his third release during the year. Though the newness hasn't worn off this one yet, I'm inclined to say it is my favorite of the three. Pound's unique style of ambient shamanic space music really shines through. "Way of the Fakir" is open and spacious, but with a subtle sequencer foundation lying underneath. Going deeper is "Way of the Yogi" with its rumbling reverberating echoes and gentle tribal touch. A cool, light drum loop forms the underpinning of "Way of the Monk," with shiny metallic synth sounds over the top. Synths have an organic warmth throughout, perhaps best exemplified here. Occasional wordless vocals appear, blended into the rest of the instruments well, including some light, sparse piano playing that adds to the atmosphere. The title track runs nearly half an hour, alternating between space music and more tribal sounds, and even a bit of glitchy electronic rhythm. This one has several different themes weaves skillfully together into a unified whole. "Sly Man's Way" ends the disc with a little desert night music, including guitars with an Old West flavor that remind me of Steve Roach and Roger King's collaboration Dust to Dust. It totally works as a unique way to finish of this excellent album.

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The Fourth Way review by Sonic Curiosity May 2010


This CD from 2009 offers 73 minutes of textural electronic ambience.

This music is Pound's sonic interpretation of an enlightenment practice called the Fourth Way, based on the teachings of Greek and Russian philosophers G. Gurdgieff and P.D. Ouspensky.

The electronics are a blend of dark textures and airy tonalities, both serving to maintain a balanced auralscape, a neutral psychic realm in which the listener can luxuriate and free themselves from the rigors of physical distraction.

Keyboards provide scarce guidance here. The electronics generally manifest themselves as waves that cascade to and fro or flourish into expansive eternity. In a few instances a melodic presence creeps in and even the beats adopt a gentle rhythmic definition. Piano even makes an appearance at one point, lending a classical air to the drifting psychic depths.

While periodically exhibiting melodic hints, the majority of this music consists of harmonic flows that surge and ebb. This oscillation is tempered by flutes, ethnic woodwinds, and strummed strings which bestow touches of humanity to the ambience. The title track (at 29 minutes long) manages to utilize all of these elements to goad the listener into a vivid dreamstate peppered with stages of engaging sonic stimulation.

Tribal percussives also contribute to the embellishment, providing unrhythmic punctuation that often approximates drops of water falling across the cerebellum. On a few occasions, though, the beats muster themselves into softly compelling rhythmics that slither through the mix like glowing serpents, spreading benevolent agitation amid the temperate electronic flow.

These compositions are designed to entice the listener into a meditative mood, then goad them into alternate states of consciousness. Many of the passages display a distinct darkness, but it is a murkiness devoid of menace, intent instead on instilling a subliminal awe through the application of soothing grinding sounds. Their pulsating presence is seasoned by auxiliary aspects (flutes, beats, and shamanistic chants) that serve to link the listener's detached spirit with their organic heritage.

©2010Matt Howarth



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Planet Origo review of LIVING PLANET Sept 2009


At my workplace my music selection is considered a bit odd. Any electronica is off the norm, and when I listen to experimental recordings or drone ambient I get coworkers saying things like, "You call that music?" Occasionally, however, I'll be listening to a recording that causes my coworkers to sit down and listen for a while and give a favorable response.

This was the case with Pound's Living Planet. Of course, it lacks the aggressiveness of a lot of experimental works and also has much more structure and melody than drone, and I think the appeal is more than that. Well composed and thought out music is just good music, regardless of your genre bias.

The opening track, Birth of a Planet, drifts in with a number of mechanical tones as the process begins to ramp up. Flutes come in to waft the listener along as the track progresses. When we find ourselves in the second track, Dawn of Man, the beat picks up. A didgeridoo carries a supporting earthy drone as the shamanic voices phase back into the music. By the time we hit track three, Monolith, we sci-fi fans are in the groove.

The length of the tracks average a bit over ten minutes, which is a good length to explore a subject without dragging on. I've now listened to a number of releases of this artist and one thing he certainly understands is the use of layers. When dealing with music that leans (sometimes heavily) into ambient realms, this is an essential skill. It allows the listener to repeatedly play the music listening deeper each time to the various threads that create the texture of the sonic tapestry.

As this artists' storyline continues, the soundscapes evolve. One might think that the complexity would be increasing to reflect the changes as society develops on his planet, but this is not the case. Unlike our own troubled world, this plot resolves itself into a calm stasis. The final track is based around a drone tone that holds the course steady. A pattern of melodic sequences keep the song from being dull, but the recording lulls us as we float to the end of the recording. One can hope that our own planet moves in a similar peaceful direction.



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Music Tap review of LIVING PLANET July 2009



The varied compositions found on Living Planet by Dan Pound, an ambient artist whose work deserves greater attention, are stitched together mixes of ambient flows. The opening track, "Birth of a Planet," spills out of a perceived void that begins a machine, which can be heard as the track progresses. It turns into a hybrid Tangerine Dream production as if TD were producing a 'feel good' meditative ambient album, yet maintaining a Tomita flavour with its synthesized music. Eerie, determined, and empty, with hints of vocalizations elicit a ghostly, machine-like determination.

The album moves on to "Dawn of Man" as the theme of the album begins to take shape. The music continues to be progressively shifting, using shades of movie soundtrack-like music to create a sense of involvement, drawing the listener into an unfolding drama. As each new track arrives and diminishes, you are aware that voices pay a large part in this full production. Whether intended as a suggestion of engineered creation by either a being or machine, the voices are prominent and provide a focal point throughout Living Planet.

"Monolith," the album's third track, is quite rhythmic and shamanic, giving the impression of a machine in full operation and yet with a designed purpose. The remaining three tracks forges through as the creation of a planet and its subsequent population are thematically played out in the music

Each track averages around ten minutes each, with a few extending beyond that, and one just below that time. There is no denying the influences here that range from Tangerine Dream, a band that has influenced most, if not all ambient artists, Tomita, Steve Roach, and other, lesser known masters of ambient music.

The goal of all ambient music is to become a complete creation that takes the listener on an intended trip, whether pleasant, frightful, or curative. Living Planet reveals the importance of Dan Pound as an ambient artist of note. He has a masterpiece in his soul just waiting to happen.

Matt Rowe


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Electroambient Space Review of LIVING PLANET May 2009


Quick on the heels of Dan Pound's last release Esoterica comes Living Planet, presumably the sequel to Liquid Planet. "Birth of a Planet" begins with primeval deep rumblings, though this soon gives way to flutes, synths, random electronic sounds and gentle percussion. The many layers seem like they shouldn't fit but they do. Now that we have a living planet we need to populate it, so "Dawn of Man" is next, bubbling up from the primordial ooze. Wordless vocals wail plaintively in the background midway through as tribal and futuristic sounds collide. Vocals become more pronounced at the end as a phrase is repeated, though I can't make out what is being sung or what language it is, or if it is even words. The vocal phrase continues to repeat as a thumping beat and a bit of synths join in on "Monolith." A very Schulze-like lead line plays softly toward the end, very nice. Long sustained swells slowly breathe in and out on "Time Forgotten," sounding both organic and synthetic. Tribal drums and flutes return, as do wordless vocals. It ends in a smattering of sparkling synth tones and the same sweeping sound that started things off. The majestic tone continues into the title track, and gradually tapers off into deep meditative reflections, even more so as it flows into the closing number, "Ray of Creation," a beautifully spacious way to finish off the album.



© 2009 Phil Derby / Electroambient Space



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Esoterica review by Planet Origo June, 2009


This is the second Pound CD that I've heard, and I've got to admit that I was a bit surprised by the fact that the style is quite different from the first one I had listened to. All musicians, of course, should change as they develop and grow in their artistry, as new styles come to them, or as the muses inspire them to shift in other directions. That, however, is often not the case.

Musicians many times find a "voice" and they don't wander too far from that sound. Mr. Pound seems to be not limiting himself to that path. I salute his choice, although I suspect it makes it harder to get a following. Fans tend to push an artist down a single path that they themselves think is the "correct" way to go.

When I first received this CD, I was taken by it right away. I listened to it while on the computer, in the car, and while drifting off to sleep at night. The catch was that I didn't seem to have much of the intellectual side of my mind wandering with the music. The attraction was more emotional, or perhaps gut level for me. This is fine, but it makes for a poor review if you can't express your reaction.

The title Esoterica comes from a Greek word that translates roughly as "within" which seems appropriate with my inner response to the music. The track lengths average around nine or ten minutes although the shortest isn't quite four minutes long.

The album is an eight part suite that drifts from one track into the next. Each section is named Esoterica Part and the number of the track. This doesn't give the mental side much to wrap around the song. If a song is named Invasion From Planet X your mind is given a clue so that you tend to clothe the sound in an image of flying saucers raining destruction on the unsuspecting Earthlings or some such. Pound opted not to give us that outlet with this release.

The recording starts off with a lot of wandering analog-esque soundscapes. (Pound blends analog and digital synths in addition to other sound sources.) It somewhat reminds one of early Berlin School electronica like Tangerine Dream's classic early 70's sound and yet it seems less dark for the most part. However, you often leave the Berlin School sound and enter a shamanic space with occurrences of floating vocals "chanting" a ritual and the like. This blending and contrasting of organic sounding items (voice, Lakota flute) with analog / digital sounds is quite a nice feat. Generally, you might think that the two are more at odds then is the case on this recording.

By the middle of the album, you do sail into some darker regions and find mechanical sounding percussions sequencing along as your sonic Odyssey continues. Don't fret. We soon leave behind these haunted regions and fly into a triumphant sunrise. Although my remarks have focused on the ambient aspects, Pound has a strong sense of rhythm that permeates much of the recording accenting the soundscapes with structured regions.

All told, this recording will appeal to lovers of classic electronic music as well as more contemporary electronica lovers.

Loren Bacon for Planet Origo
June, 2009



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Testimonials/quotes
What People are "saying" about the music of Dan Pound:

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"Beautiful soundworlds, aural atmospheres and environments"
Ping Things

"Shamanic music for the 21'st century"
Melliflua

"Pound's approach of fusing old and new styles is satisfying and highly engaging. His compositions establish thrilling intersections between exotic yesterdays and mysterious tomorrows"
Sonic Curiosity

"At its heart, Trance Meditation is all about space. And this space is definitely worth exploring"
Aural Innovations

"A cerebral journey through ambient landscapes. Intelligent and engaging"
Yoga Magazine

"Esoterica is easily one of the best ambient releases of 2009"
Electroambient Space

"Solar Nexus is one of the hottest releases of the year"
Ambient Visions

"It is good when independently produced works, those that lack even the alternative label support, spring up and show some bite"
Musictap

"Music of mystery that could provide interesting ambience to a life or a soundtrack or both"
Earbuzz.net

"Pounds approach of fusing old and new styles is satisfying and highly engaging."
Sonic Curiosity

"I have heard a lot of new age music and meditation-ambient type music but very few with such tonal depth, quality and emotion"
Denis Couture


"Just found your music and wanted to say how beautiful is"
Brian Duell


"I very much enjoy your music, fantastic stuff"
William Paynter


"I will be using this music in my modern dance classes for choreography and improvisation"
Karyn Edison



"Thanks for producing something that's a nice addition to my library"
Len Pope


"Just picked up one of your CD's. Outstanding! You give great visuals to a blind listener. I look forward to more exploration"
Daniel Sweeny



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Interviews:

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Electroambient Space interview with Dan Pound
April 2009



Dan Pound was born and raised in California, now living in the wine country of Sonoma County with his wife, two dogs, a cat, and a fish named Fred. You can read more about Dan in the bio on his web site.



Dan sent me his CD Liquid Planet to review an embarrassingly long time ago, which I recently dusted off and listened to when he sent me his new album Esoterica. Both are excellent, as you'll see on the Reviews page this month. I immediately asked Dan for an interview, and he thankfully agreed.



You are classically trained in a number of instruments. Why did you decide to focus on electronic music?

Like many people in the arts, my path has not been a straight and narrow one.

I was classically trained on guitar, piano and double bass. My musical influences and tastes have always been varied and eclectic. Growing up, I was exposed to a wide variety of genres and musical styles. I heard jazz, classical, rock, folk, blues, Broadway, standards, roots and old country, among other things. My first exposure to electronic music was through progressive bands like ELP, Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd and King Crimson and the like. Later, I finally discovered Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, and Steve Roach among others in this genre. This was a whole new aural experience for me, with a unique power that resonated deeply with me.

Initially, I went the singer/songwriter route, writing songs at a very early age after learning the guitar. I honed this craft by reading everything I could about songwriting, listening to everything, copying song books and tablature, etc. I got pretty good at song writing and lyrics, and even had some forwards from Taxi to A & R people for corporate consideration. After many forwards but no real breaks, I decided I was better at the instrumental, soundtrack kind of thing, and started exploring this more. I realized right away that this music was more "real" to me.

After getting serious about electronic music composing, I started seeing more success and soon realized that this was indeed my path. To this day, I have never looked back from this area and genre of music making.

I still incorporate guitar in my work, and even use my voice, but with non-lyrical vocal chants and shamanic style vocalizations. I still write songs, just without words and with very minimalistic melodies.


Do you still play acoustic instruments on your recordings?

Yes. Besides guitar, I play a variety of ethnic percussion, Lakota flutes, didgeridoos, singing bowls, ocarina, anything that makes an interesting sound.

What exactly is a Lakota flute?



A guy by the name of Odell Borg makes these for his line, High Spirit Flutes, in Patagonia, Arizona. They are Native American Cedar flutes. I have three of them so far in different keys. They are amazing. The first time I tried one at one of the local music shops, it was immediately familiar to me and I had to have one. It brought a definite organic and emotional flavor to my sound. I love anything that takes breath to make the sound. That feels so primal and human to me and makes a nice contrast to the synthetic sound worlds I make.



What do you think sets you apart from other ambient and new age artists?

I think because of the fact that I incorporate a variety of non-traditional acoustic instruments and unique vocalizations into my work. This gives my electronic music more of an organic sound. I often describe my music as the soundtrack for a Shaman who goes to outer space; not your everyday ambient electronic music, nor is it typical new age. Often my music is of a meditative quality, yet it's also very dark at times.

How much does improvisation play a part in your compositions?

This plays a big part as far as exploring new ideas goes. It can also take effect when a new part is added to existing sound beds as overdubs. Even though the part might be fairly planned out, the actual in-the-moment executing of the event happens in real time, in an exploring manner, where the part comes out as sort of a surprising creation for me. In other words, the unfolding of the part or even the whole piece never comes out as planned all the way. The feeling of being in the moment while creating music takes over and the whole process takes on a life of its own, giving you a very different outcome than was originally intended.

For sure though, when I am exploring new sounds on an instrument or processing sounds, improvisation plays a big role.

What is your favorite instrument or piece of gear at the moment and why?

I know this is cheating, but I would say that the whole studio is my favorite. It's like one big instrument for me. You almost never play every single note in one track, and you would almost never use every patch or feature, or parameter on, say, a keyboard synth for a single track. The same goes for the studio. I have many parts, features, dials, knobs, keys, reeds, strings, strikers etc. available to me at any time for whatever sound I need for any given track or piece of music.

If I had to choose one instrument, again I would cheat and name two. My analog modular set-up is at once alien and yet like an extension of me with built-in instincts. This would be one, and then probably my Nord lead 2-x synth. Then I would still have to mention my Lexicon pcm91 Reverb. Without this I could not get that expansive sound my music demands. Then of course there are the didge and flutes.



Would it be fair to assume, since your music was used for a Greenpeace documentary, that you support their work? You must have been very proud to have them use your music.

I am always proud for uses like this, and yes, I do support the Greenpeace project and others like them. Most of my music is based on themes of the environment, the Earth, the cosmos, our oceans and so on. In fact the entire Heat Waves album is based on the theme of global warming. Greenpeace used the title track from Return in the project you're referring to. It was used at the very beginning of the documentary, very effectively.

I am finding more and more use for my music in projects in the healing arts world, and I am proud of that. I've had my music used in projects like yoga videos, guided meditations, relaxation CDs and the like. Although maybe not as significant as issues of the environment, I very much support these arenas as having a positive effect on our health and overall living quality. I understand the need for quietude, meditation, relaxing and letting go of everything. I am always honored when anything I have created is used to enhance such a project.



I've always thought of music as a way and a passage vessel to help transport one to another plane, and to help the entire thought process explore and transmit higher themes than the usual everyday internal dialogues. This type of music along with say, yoga, is a perfect combination to achieve such a state.



So what do you do when you aren't making music?



I like to read, mostly philosophy and "how to" books. I like learning about and how to do new things. This week, I rebuilt a small pond in my back yard. I like to landscape, cook, build things, write, and listen to music. I love movies. I like photography.



Have you started on your next musical project? What's it going to sound like, any idea yet?



I have most of a CD recorded called Living Planet that is almost ready for the final mixing and mastering stages after a few more brush strokes. In this one, you'll hear a lot of modular analog drones, along with very spacey atmospheres, some techno flavored grooves, some great lead synth parts, a little guitar looping, and lots of shamanic infusion. I did more vocal stuff on this one than usual, as well as more rhythmic based tracks. It's very much Shamanic space music but with a slight techno edge. I believe that it's my best work to date.



What's the best advice or feedback you've been given about your music?



I was lucky enough to have a three day, one-on-one master class stint with Steve Roach at his Timeroom Studio in December 2007. Along with all the technical areas, he also gave me many words of advice that I have retained in my memory and refer to often. The main thing that stands out is that he questioned the integrity of my CD releases at the time. They were flying out of my studio at a rapid fire rate. These were CDs with strong ideas, lots of substance and emotion, but they were CDRs not replicated CDs, and the labels were the peel and stick on type, and many times these were not playable in basic players. Also, there are a lot of EQ obscurities in these recordings and mixes that I wasn't hearing at the time that I hear now. I've since learned many critical listening skills, as well as fine tuned my studio environment and monitor setup. Steve taught me about these things as well. The whole way I record, monitor, mix and even compose has completely changed since. Also the final product is now a professional replication of the original master with screen printed artwork, so there are no errors with these discs. I take more time with the music now; there is no hurry to release the next title until it's really ready. I owe Steve much, and realize now that he really pushed me to the other side where I finally found my own sound, and now I'm just perfecting that.



What advice would you give someone else starting out in this genre of music?



I would say it's okay to emulate others at first because you learn a lot by doing this, but that in the long run, if you're serious about music making, you have to find your true self in your music; it should be your own sound. When I first started out as a singer/songwriter, one of the problems I had with song writing in general was that my rebellious nature took over when it came to the rules of the trade. I wasn't a top notch writer because my intros were too long, or I took too long to get to the chorus, or I didn't include a bridge, or the melody wasn't memorable enough, or the verses sounded too much like the chorus, etc. The great thing that turned me on to this genre is that there really are no rules. This made it fun to create music and sound worlds. I could just compose what I thought was cool and moving and just hoped that others would get it. This helped me find what works for me and to just be real, and produce music that emulates only what my emotions and states of mind are. The best works of music, that people love for years on end are the works that are totally original and outside the box. My best advice is to take chances, break the rules and be real to yourself. Find your own sound.



New age music seemed to peak in popularity around the 80s or early 90s, and may have dropped off a little since then. What do you think of the current outlook for the future of new age, ambient and electronic music in general?



I think it's getting harder to define what New Age music is anymore. There are so many subgenres out there. That's the problem with people relying on definitions and title labels. Some of us artists are hard to find out there because our music is not even definable by any known genre or even subgenre. Take for instance my own music. Some of it is dark ambient, some space music, some soundtrack, some new age, some experimental, some meditation music. In general, I think the outlook is good as more people are hungering for what's different, especially in other regions like Europe and Japan and elsewhere. I hope it becomes more experimental, rather than continue the pop-infused phase it seems to be in right now.



What do you like best about making music?



Music to me is God's gift to us. It's the perfect, safe drug. I'm not a very religious person, but I am of a spiritual nature, and that's what making music is to me - a spiritual experience. It's the one thing in my life that I can construct and manipulate exactly how I want to. When I am in the creating phase of music making, I am not in this world, I am somewhere else. I guess it's not entirely true that I control all of it either. I am somewhat of a conduit for the receiving of aural vibrations that eventually twist and turn to create this living sound space that one can literally live in and even return to at a different time. Making music is the one thing I do foremost, just for me. The nice by-product is that other people tune in and like it too. ♫



Thanks Dan for the interview, and for the music!




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Melliflua Interview with Dan Pound
August, 2007


Dan Pound is an independent musician with a sizeable discography of self-released albums. Due to the incorporation of shamanistic motifs Dan's albums are some of the most intriguing that listeners will encounter these days. Last year I reviewed Solar Nexus which was deservedly described as �one of the hottest releases of the year". His latest album Tantra Majik will be reviewed at Melliflua later this year. Details of this album and his discography can be found at Dan's website.

Thankyou Dan for taking the time to answer my questions in-depth.

Q: You were involved with music from an early age . Can you tell us what led you to making and releasing instrumental music?

As far back as I can remember, I was exposed to all kinds of music; classical, jazz, Broadway, folk, soundtracks, rock, you name it. I remember my Mom putting me down for a nap and turning on the soundtrack for Romeo and Juliet to help me go to sleep. Even at 4 and 5 years old I was moved to tears by what I heard. Not so much for the story, (although I had seen the film and loved it, as I have always been a hopeless romantic), but it was the music itself that moved me. It had a powerful impact very early on.

By my own choice, I took guitar lessons at nine years old, ( I took piano when I was about 5...but NOT by my choice). I learned theory and tablature notation and such and was at once enthralled with the whole idea of writing or creating my own music. I would walk to the guitar shop where I took lessons and would spend hours there copying down pages of songbooks onto my own manuscript paper to learn even more about the structure of song writing. (I was only nine years old and couldn't afford all of the songbooks I wanted, and besides, the guys that worked there were my friends).

My first stint with writing was writing little love songs for whatever girl I had a crush on at the time. I would actually write down the chords, notes and lyrics in my manuscript books, only this time they were My songs. Then I learned how to play double bass in the school orchestra. (Actually, I taught myself how to play, as I was unexpectedly approached by the teacher who said he needed a bass player...fast. I guess he thought I was the right man for the job.) Soon I was writing and transcribing works for the whole orchestra. That is when the instrumental musician/composer part of me came out. Since then it's been a slow trail which started out as a part time hobby, and now has actually become a real business and trade that I work at every day.

Q: Can you tell us more about this?

Well for so long music was a part time hobby. Very important to me but a hobby none the less. Then about four years ago I decided I wanted to really give it a go, and it became a full time serious hobby. That's when I started releasing my CDs, got a website up, got some songs online, and began pitching my stuff to various places. Then this last year I got real serious and decided to make the music an actual business. The ultimate goal being that I wanted to eventually quit my day job and make a real living at music. I got a license, business cards, book keeping stuff, a separate bank account etc. I started buying books about business and music marketing and such. I got seriously addicted to this part of things, challenging myself to do at least something everyday to help forward the biz. Now the business part takes as much of my time as the music making part. Taking the plunge and actually believing in myself was the first step. Now things are finally taking off for me. I guess hard work really does pay off.

Q: Since you started releasing music you've built up a discography of over 20 albums. How has your musical style developed during that time, and has your method of creating music changed?

When I really got serious about making music and was working on my first CD, Other Worlds, I was relying a lot on the use of samples to jumpstart my ideas, and was often going for that �commercial� sound as well. Now I go into the studio and just start shaping and manipulating sound in various ways and come up with something that sounds good to me. Or I go in with a clear cut idea of something I want to try and then go from there. I'm also doing more work in �real time� rather than step by step, so there is much more authenticity and honesty in my work.

Nowadays, I use music to transport me to another plane of existence, where half of the creating is me doing, but the other half is me receiving transmissions from somewhere beyond to help understand where the music needs to go. It's actually much more spontaneous nowadays. Also, I am more seasoned in the studio and understand engineering more now. I have much more at my disposal because of this. I think of the studio as the master instrument of all instruments. It's a billion components with even more original possibilities and capabilities. I love the idea of making a sound or voice no one has ever heard before.

Another difference between now and when I started is that I incorporate more organic instruments. I use the didgeridoo, Native American flutes, singing bowls, and various hand percussion and such. I also use my own voice instead of samples. I even shape and tweak the recordings of my voice so that you can't tell that it's a voice, so that it sounds like a cello, or you can't tell the gender, things like that. In reality, you could say, I'm still finding my own voice.

Q: Who and what have been your main influences, and to what extent have they influenced your music?

The first albums that I bought were from the Beatles, Neil Diamond, and Elton John, because to me they were the masters of singer/songwriters, and that's what I thought I wanted to be then. I later got seriously into classical music and numerous composers, and to this day still have a huge library of vinyl classical records that I rotate through. Then I got heavily into the great progressive bands of the 70's like Yes, Genesis, Rush, King Crimson and especially, Pink Floyd. It was a Floyd concert in LA where I had my first real music with visuals experience. That had a major impact on me.

Another set of similar experiences happened to me when I saw the movies, Risky Business, Legend and Thief, all made around the same time. These movies all had a soundtrack by Tangerine Dream. Because of them, I got hooked on electronic music. Then I caught their live show and was double hooked. I had to have everything ever recorded by the Dream. It was this influence that prompted me to buy my first keyboard. Actually it was my first piece of what I thought of as �gear�, as I only had guitars, my voice and my manuscript pad all these years. I still remember getting out of the store, getting in my car, and putting the batteries in this baby, (it was a silly little Casio after all), and crankin her up. I was amazed at all I could do with a sweep of a knob or a push of a button. (I've always loved buttons and knobs and sliders and such).

I rented a little Fostex 4 track cassette recorder and went to work, creating music that sounded a little like what I had been listening to. I put together a collage edit of movie scenes onto video, turned the sound down on the TV, and came up with this music soundtrack to play back with it. It went together with it perfectly. I knew at that time that I wanted to create visual music. Another Major influence I should mention is Steve Roach. What a pioneer in the genre, and without formal training or musical education. His soundworlds are at this point in my life, the focal point for the style that I try to emulate in my work. Not sure if I should say this or not, but we have spoken together and I will be attending a week long immersion workshop for sound creation at his studio/home soon. This will most likely give me a whopping kick in the pants to help me move on the next level. Should be cool.

Q: Solar Nexus is one of the most fascinating albums I've heard for some time. What was the inspiration for combining themes around the sun with shamanistic motifs?

Starting with my third release, In A Hummingbird's Dream, I decided that I wanted each CD to have it's own theme. Sort of it's own story to tell. Even though my music is mostly instrumental, I feel like it should say and mean something. To have a lyrical type theme. It's also a good guide for me to stay on track of the overall feel of the album I'm creating, so as to make it sound cohesive and like the pieces all go together. At times I may have two or maybe even three CDs being created at the same time simply because of the fact that there are two or three different moods going on in the pieces I'm creating and so they're too contrasting and different.

I would say that most of my music incorporates a degree of shamanistic quality and at the same time would be considered space music. Solar Nexus for me is the ultimate album because it fuses these two elements together so that the sum of the fusion becomes greater than either one on it's own. I felt like an alchemist making this one. As far as the theme itself goes, I think of the sun as the most powerful living thing the earth harnesses. We need it to survive. Think of it, it must come before all else in terms of all things physical or material. It Is life.

Therefore, the pieces on Solar Nexus all have that feeling of ancient man, at his most primordial, still being able to grasp (or at least beginning to grasp) the importance of this life giving God-like thing in the sky. So we have the past and early man and his first �god�, and then you have the current knowledge of space and solar existence, and yet the mystery still remains as it always did....will the sun shine again tomorrow?

Q: What got you onto the shamanistic theme and sound?

When I first heard Steve Roach's Dreamtime Return and heard the elements of didgeridoo and tribal rhythms mixed with all these drenching synthesizers, I knew this was something I wanted to explore. At this same time I was reading a lot of esoteric and existential stuff like Casteneda and Ouspensky and others, and many of the spiritual themes and philosophies I was pondering started becoming the core themes for my songs and projects.

To this day, the bulk of my music is based on these spiritual discoveries that seem to be ongoing. In addition to these elements was the introducing and inclusion of ethnic, organic instruments into my work. I decided I wanted to learn the didgeridoo, So I researched a little and bought one. I bought a video that taught me how to play. Then I acquired a couple of Native American Flutes and various hand drums and percussion and singing bowl etc. I had once seen Steve Roach in a promotional video scraping this rock across this other long slate rock, and thinking how cool that sounded. Sure enough around the same time of starting the didg, and building my first real studio, I found a long, shiny slate rock in my yard and another one for the hand. I've used that sound in several pieces. There's the scraping sound which is very potent in the sound design area, and then there's the clanking beat you can make with it.

It's very primal to play a rock as an instrument. In the past I used mostly vocal samples in my ethnic stuff, but lately I have learned the letting go of the vocal chant. Mostly it's just guttural vowel sounds, but it can also serve as a percussive sound or effect as well. When I am doing the chanting, there is a true primordial feeling that takes over that is truly shamanistic in quality.

Q: You've released a lot of albums in a variety of styles. Do you have a vision of what direction your music will take in the future? Also, do you have any plans for live performances?

Performing live is something I have recently been considering. It scares the shit out of me but at the same time excites me. To this point, reasons I haven't so far are because of lack of portability and not having certain equipment needed for the task. Also, venues that cater to this type of music are scarce around my town, (as far as I know, and if anyone knows a place near Santa Rosa Cal. that does this genre, please contact me). As far as the direction my music is taking, I would say that I used to emulate, now I innovate. I am steering farther from the mainstream. I want to make sounds that you've never heard before. I want to use music as a personal tool for self exploration and inner travel. Therefore, I must always be looking in other different directions for the inspirations that spark my creative hand. I am honing in on my own sound and voice, and what's coming out is I feel very original and interesting music. Music from or for other worlds so to speak. I'll always make it a point to learn, grow and change, as a person and an artist.

Q: Some of your CD covers look like computer art. Is that the case, and is it your work?

You could say that it's computer enhanced art. The original images are almost all my own photographs and some my wife took. I would then tweak an image in numerous ways in a computer program and then add the texts, bar code, etc.., make the layout, print the covers, put it all together and you have an original CD. A real grass roots production. I must again state the importance to me that the visuals and music must go together, therefore, the images have to correlate with the theme of the album. That's the challenge, tweaking the image just right so it looks like what you want it to. The cover for Trance Meditation was done using a picture my wife took of a peacock feather. You can't tell that's what it is by looking at it, but the colors are all there. It looks like ripples in a mythical pool of rainbow colored water. The album covers are a real fun, creative part of the whole CD making process. Plus I use the art work for visuals on my website and a few collage slide show videos that are on YouTube.com and my website as well. My next CD is called In-sense, so what am I going to do? I'll take a picture of burning incense. If that's too dark, maybe I'll try a sparkler or a lit match and shoot and tweak that. We shall see.

Q: A lot of ambient musicians are making collaborative albums these days. Is that something you would be interested in doing?

Definitely. Especially if the blend is mutual and complementary. I like the idea of someone else who can play more than one instrument like myself and spontaneously seeing what happens. I have been in a few bands, and miss that chemistry that happens when everyone �gets� the music that's happening. The only rule would be, that there would be no rules. Anyone out there interested?

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DI.FM interview June 2009


Do you have any formal musical training (instruments, music theory,
mastering, etc)?

Yes. First there were the piano lessons at age five that I didn't want to take.

Then at age nine, I DID want to take guitar lessons so that was a big starting point for me in music. My teacher was great and taught me by theory. I was obsessed at this point. I would walk up the street almost daily to the guitar shop where I took lessons. The guys there thought it was cool that this little kid was so eager to learn that they allowed me to copy songs from song books onto my own manuscript paper. I learned much about the craft of songwriting by repeating this task over and over. The lessons lasted several years.

So by now I was writing my own songs. Silly as they were then, I took it very seriously.

At age 13, I enrolled in the school orchestra and studied double bass. I even made it into the honor orchestra which were comprised of the best players from the whole school district.

At this point I studied the directors scores and learned how to orchestrate and transpose. I would write pieces for the orchestra which the director thought were great, although the other students didn't like them much.

So that is basically my formal training with much emphasis on theory and structure.


Who are a few of your major influences, musically or otherwise?

I started out listening to the Beatles, Elton John, then got heavily into Classical music at the early age of around ten. Then came my progressive rock stage, Yes, Genesis, Rush, ELP, Moody Blues, King Crimson, Pink Floyd and the like. Then I discovered Electronic music. Particularly, Tangerine Dream, Vangelis and Steve Roach. This took my focus away from songwriting and steered it in the the direction of instrumental music. It was like classical music to me only modern and electronic.

Other influences to me would be film makers , artists and writers.


What are some of your favorite pieces of gear and/or software?

Right now I am in love with my Makie 32/4 ONYX mixer, as well as my Nord lead 2X synth, my analog modular synth, Lexicon PCM91 reverb, Dave Smith Instruments Evolver synth, and a couple of older pieces I picked up on E-Bay, a Yamaha AN200 synth, and a a pair of Line 6 Echos delay unit.

As far as software I like Izotopes Ozone mastering suite, Absynth, Live and a few others, but mostly I stick to hard synths.


How do you go about starting work on a new piece of music?

Almost always it comes from experimenting and improvisation.

I'll start with whatever instrument is calling to me and just try things.
I find that by continuing to learn and get to know an instrument inside and out, you'll discover new ways of making new sounds that might be interesting.
To me, I am always looking to take music to another level and dimension. I always look for that new sound. I equate it to being on a archeological excavation looking for lost ruins that are a part of are hidden past.


What excites you at the moment, musically?

I suppose it has to be my latest project.

Again, it's uncharted every time. I am on a voyage of discovery, and it seems now, like every other time with a new project, I get excited by what is found. There is always that giddy feeling every time I walk into the studio. It's like walking onto a space pod and going "OK, where are we going to go this time?" , and no one knows.


Is there something that sticks out in your mind as an inspiring moment for
you musically?

When I went to visit Steve Roach at his home/ranch/studio to do a three day apprenticeship. This very much inspired me.

I did a complete one eighty as to the way I make music and CD's.
The way I listen even changed and I learned how to decipher frequencies better and to hear things that I wasn't hearing before.

It was a time that sticks out for sure, and I often refer to what I learned there as tools that function in a huge way as part of the music making process.


What is the biggest challenge you face with your music?

Learning how to make a living at it and still enjoy it. Sure, I could give guitar lessons, tune peoples piano, things like that, but that is not what I want. So, I spend as much time on marketing and promoting as I do creating the music.
But at the same time, I actually enjoy the marketing part of it too. I just wish I could quit my day job at this point. But I believe it will happen.


Do you work on any other styles of music or are you very focused on making one type of sound?

As I said before, I was a songwriter initially, and I could still dabble in this a little. Probably with a more electronic flavor now though, it is something I have been thinking about.

Also, I wouldn't mind doing some more orchestral stuff again, now more with software and synths and stuff though. Other than that I am pretty much diggin' on the sound world discovery I am on right now. I mix electronics with organic/acoustic instruments and my voice. It's a blend between worlds long gone and lost, and worlds not yet found yet.


What kind of music do you love listening to? Any particular tracks that
are timeless classics for you?

For the most part it's Ambient Electronic and Classical music.

Timeless: a couple of symphonies by Tchaikovsky and Mahler, Massenet's Meditation from Thais. (makes me cry every time).
Pink Floyd: Dark side of the Moon album.
Tangerine Dream: Ricochet
Steve Roach: Dreamtime Return
Vangelis: music from Blade Runner
And MUCH more.


What are the best ways for people to get your music?

Visit my website at
www.danpound.com
(All my albums and songs are there.)

www.cdbaby.com carries my music, as well as www.amazon.com, iTunes, Napster and many others.

Or contact me directly by E-mail at:
danpound at danpound dot com


Many thanks to Dan Pound!
__________________
michaelandrews.net
techsture-digital.com
di.fm/spacemusic
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DAN POUND REVIEWS:


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Sonic Curiosity review of "LIVING PLANET" August 2009


This CD from 2009 offers 72 minutes of pensive electronic music.

Moody textures generate a dense presence that is thickened by additional tonal layers. Ponderous keyboards introduce melodies, while chants and tribal percussion lend a rhythmic demeanor. Flutes soften the basic intensity with their sighing influence

A deep resonance dominates the electronics, evoking an impenetrable darkness throughout the album. Alternate tonalities seep into play, seasoning the flow with their portentous pulsations. Keyboards provide melodic enhancement for these inky harmonics, flavoring the stygian gloom with dreamy threads. These intonations manage to mirror the aural moodiness.

A tribal presence is prominently featured in this music. Guttural voices evolve into nocturnal chants, chronicling mankind's gradual development.

Percussives vitally contribute to this tribal milieu. Primeval rhythms are a constant fixture, providing reverent animation with their pittering and rattling in the background. Despite this immersion, the tempos seethe with emotion.

The breathy droning of flutes generates a winsome sentiment for the ceremonial soundtrack. Their euphony is haunting. Didgeridoo offers a deeper woodwind voice, delineating a spiritual presence attending the ritual.

A fundamental density remains constant throughout the album, as each composition elaborates on the thematic flow. From a geological opening through stages of human emergence into the sonic landscape, a thick drama unfurls and coalesces into an entrancing intensity. Each moment is imbued with a grandiose vitality.



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Electroambient Space review of "LIVING PLANET" June 2009


Quick on the heels of Dan Pound's last release Esoterica comes Living Planet, presumably the sequel to Liquid Planet. "Birth of a Planet" begins with primeval deep rumblings, though this soon gives way to flutes, synths, random electronic sounds and gentle percussion. The many layers seem like they shouldn't fit but they do. Now that we have a living planet we need to populate it, so "Dawn of Man" is next, bubbling up from the primordial ooze. Wordless vocals wail plaintively in the background midway through as tribal and futuristic sounds collide. Vocals become more pronounced at the end as a phrase is repeated, though I can't make out what is being sung or what language it is, or if it is even words. The vocal phrase continues to repeat as a thumping beat and a bit of synths join in on "Monolith." A very Schulze-like lead line plays softly toward the end, very nice. Long sustained swells slowly breathe in and out on "Time Forgotten," sounding both organic and synthetic. Tribal drums and flutes return, as do wordless vocals. It ends in a smattering of sparkling synth tones and the same sweeping sound that started things off. The majestic tone continues into the title track, and gradually tapers off into deep meditative reflections, even more so as it flows into the closing number, "Ray of Creation," a beautifully spacious way to finish off the album.


© 2009 Phil Derby / Electroambient Space


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Sonic Curiosity review of Esoterica, June 2009


Normally, Pound's music is quite ambient and moody, and while this release features such moments, it achieves a lively level as the tunes progress, reaching a state of delightful pep. Passages of delicate electronics are seasoned by keyboards, amiable pulsations, and sultry rhythms.

Initially, while textural airs establish a cosmic tableau, leisurely keyboard riffs float like bubbles on a buoyant breeze, generating a softly melodic presence in the stately twilight. The pace gradually transforms from a dreamy state into some notably spry tuneage as the electronics engage in glistening loops, ushering heavenly voices and gurgling effects into a vivacious whirlpool of luscious depth. This bouncy mode continues in a rewarding and satisfying fashion...until the mood reverts to a regal somnambulance for the finale.

Some percussion is intermittently employed. While most of the beats are muffled, remote, almost celestial in character, the tempos achieve a vigorous level once the music slides into its energized phase.

Sustained flutes and breathy didgeridoo provide ethereal enhancements.

Throughout the course of the CD, these compositions progress from regal ambience to animated zest. The melodies penetrate deep into the audience's psyche where they stimulate a reverent awakening of the subconscious. Pound's mastery of evolving dreaminess into passages of vitalization is thoroughly engaging.

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MusicTap review of Esoterica, May 2009


The latest album from ambient artist, Dan Pound, serves to cement his old school approach to recorded sound treatments. Reminiscent of early period Tangerine Dream ('70s), Esoterica, created over a 6-month period, is split into eight long pieces that never stray from an isolated but industrialized sound that tells its stories with an icy candor. Each well-composed piece rewards the listener with an event. If you have enjoyed early ambient from classic artists like Michael Hoenig (Departures from the Northern Wastelands), and Tangerine Dream (Stratosfear), then you'll find much to love about Dan Pound, who creates genuine compositions that carry musical weight.

I'm actually surprised that Dan Pound isn't found on any notable ambient labels that can provide better distribution for his self-released works. Dan Pound is a notable ambient talent.

Matt Rowe




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Sonic Immersion review of Esoterica, March 2009


"Esoterica" is the first release of ambient musician Dan Pound in 2009. What this album especially reveals for me, is the fact that Dan has been further refining and shaping is own sound.

The cd contains the title track, divided in eight parts, in which sequenced parts are mingled with free form textural soundscapes, shamanic/ethnic percussion, flute, didjeridoo, and voice. Together they create one spacious aural picture.

These atmospheric, at times even mysterious, soundworlds with occasional dronescapes could be considered shamanic space music as both organic, serene and meditative elements are featured throughout the sonic ride.

Fans of the ethnic flavoured works of Steve Roach should give this recording a try.

Bert Strolenberg



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Electroambient Space review of ESOTERICA, March 2009


Esoterica is another set of first-rate serene shifting soundscapes from Dan Pound. As on prior albums, Pound uses analog and digital synths and samplers, voice, flute, and didgeridoo. He melds them into a thoroughly pleasant array of moods and sounds. Divided into eight parts, each one floats calmly by with influences ranging from Tangerine Dream to Brian Eno, often all within the same track. For example, "Esoterica Part One" starts with smooth floating music for a few minutes, but segues into a bright sequencer-based passage for the remainder. I particularly like part two, with a fascinating echoing bass line with quirky percussion running parallel to it. It defies easy categorization or description, but suffice to say it is a refreshingly unique take on electronic ambient music. The beat gets heavier and more tribal, ably aided by Pound's Lakota flute playing. By now over 20 minutes of excellent ambience has passed, with still more to come. Part three has a brisk, bright sequence and a sweeping synth that rises and falls. Then this fantastic chugging bass line takes over, although the energy remains restrained just so. Instead of continuing to build on this, Pound teases and then brings it back down, creating this wonderful dynamic. Part four has a stuttering little rhythmic bit, a hint of glitchy electronica but smoother than that. We're now well over 40 minutes in and it just keeps getting better. The energy goes up a notch on parts five and six, the latter featuring this cool clipped processed didgeridoo sound. The latter sections of the album with their clean, crisp, computerized percussion remind me of Vir Unis and James Johnson on their excellent Perimeter series, or Vir's solo album Mercury and Plastic. After all this fun with rhythm, the floating tones of part eight bring the disc to a relaxed finish. Esoterica is easily one of the best ambient releases of 2009 so far.



© 2009 Phil Derby / Electroambient Space


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Planet Origo review of "Night Watch"
by Loren Bacon
December, 2008


When I took this CD out of the envelope, I looked it over and read across the titles. The other Pound recording I have heard was quite a bit tribal in nature, so I was expecting this one to be similar. Reading the titles reminded me of the late Carlos Castenada's stories of shamanism with such names as The Crack Between the Worlds, Little Smoke, Taming the Ally, and Path With a Heart. This last track is the longest on the CD at around thirteen minutes.

The tracks listed were quite varied in length, ranging from the above mentioned thirteen minutes to two and a half minutes on the shortest song. Yet, many (not all) of these tracks flow from one track into another. Often there is some gentle field recording of crickets, birds, or water that allows the two songs to link into each other.

I started listening to it and found that there certainly were a lot of tribal / shamanic passages and tunes, but I discovered that this was used more as a flavoring that was overlying more deep space / cosmic sounds. In fact, there's quite a bit of blending of various electronica styles on this recording.

There certainly is the tribal feel in tunes like Gatekeepers Song with its Native American sounding flute and analog rhythms of drums, shakers, and rattles, not to mention the throaty didgeridoo sections. However, this and most of the tracks also have their share of floating tempos, tranquil atmospherics, and drifting serene ambience.

This is seen in Night Magic where the transition cricket sounds give way to atmospheric washes that wander the universe. Halfway through the track, a drumming phases in to maintain the flavor without overpowering it.

Pound's website describes the title track as being "space meditation music" and many of the tracks share somewhat in this aspect. In fact, it might well be argued that this music is better suited as something to be played after the sun sets and evening falls.



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Sonic Curiosity review of "Night Watch" Feb 2009


DAN POUND: Night Watch (CD on PoundSounds)

This CD from 2008 offers 71 minutes of moody ambient music.

Shakers and various tribal elements, including shamanistic utterances, usher the listen into a nocturnal realm designed to facilitate access to the inner spirit. Gradually, moody tones and airy flutes enter the sonic stage, and harmonic flows establish a foothold. Percussives, evolving from erratic beats to languid rhythms, lend anticipatory punctuation to the haunting pastiche. Electronic chords rise into understated prominence, remaining secondary and acting as a pacific foundation.

Blending softly shrill sounds with deep bass rumblings creates a full-range experience, but Pound prefers the darker end of the sonic spectrum, sculpting optimism from dire aspects and seasoning that gloom with instances of light.

While the body of this tuneage consists of electronic textures and primitive rhythms, an amount of auxiliary instruments are engaged to flavor the mix. Keyboard sustains generate a heavenly fancy. Native American flutes evoke a tranquil contemplative instinct. Didgeridoo conjures an eerie demeanor. Environmental recordings inject an earthly flair, a type of grounding for the aerial excursion.

These compositions explore the prospect of stimulating strata of the brain which harbor ancestral memories, abolishing the barriers between past and present and allowing heritage to merge with modern sensibilities. Once attuned to this unilateral perspective, the listener can initiate internal expansion.

Pound's adroit fusion of antediluvian drones with 21st century mannerisms creates an excellent dose of ambience with holistic tendencies.



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Sonic Immersion review of Night Watch, 2008

Mr Pound keeps up releasing music in quite a high tempo, as November 2008 saw the release of "Night Watch", music made for inner transformation and mind expansion.

The 70+ minutes on this album realm in the ambient/space genre, but infused with lots of tribal influences. Next to field recordings, Dan plays singing bowls, Native American flutes, Shamanic percussion and didj, which compliment the sedate electronic textures and morphing dronescapes.

Occasionally, the calming music reaches a higher level, as heard in the too short "Night Magic" with its warm, embracing and elevating effect.
In the 12-minute closing track, some spacious and lofty e-guitar shows up as well, making it a nice closure of this contemplative, meditative album.

Bert Strolenberg




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Sonic Curiosity review of "Trance Meditation" (re-mastered by Steve Roach)
by Matt Howarth, Oct 2008


"While Pound is responsible for all the actual music (performed on analog and digital synthesizers, samplers, electric guitar, didgeridoo, shamanic voice and percussion), he is aided by ambient pioneer Steve Roach who contributed sonic enhancements, arrangement and mastering.

Lush atmospherics evoke a nocturnal mood with dire tonalities and gritty embellishments. The textural flow is dark, more portentous than ominous, instilling a serenity that is laced with a wary sense of external awareness. Swimming in this oily mix are haunting vocal effects, didgeridoo moans, and rattlings of paranormal character, all of which enhance the overall arcane nature of the music.

Traces of an abrasive edginess lurk within the sounds utilized on this album. Pound is to be applauded for his crafty application of these harsh sounds to achieve a mood that remains ethereal, albeit eerie.

While generally grating and disturbing, the electronics are crisp and fluid, never muddy or guttural. That their effect is unsettling owes more to the manner in which they are layered with airy textures that carry the resonance of a wintry pasture. In one piece, heavy keyboard sustains achieve a dramatic presence, while another track allows similar keyboards to express themselves more optimistically in lilting chords.

Percussion plays a very minor role here, generally hiding in the mix or processed to the point where the rhythms no longer exhibit any beats.

These harmonic compositions frequently display hints of melodic substance. This is one of the major appeals of his music, his tendency to utilize fleeting glimpses of melody hiding amid the churning pool of atmospheric consistency. This release is decidedly darker than his usual fare, though."




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Sonic Immersion review of Trance Meditation, 2008

This version of "Trance Meditation" is actually a re-release of most of the music from the same album, which California-based ambient composer Dan Pound put out in 2006.
This time, ambient legend Steve Roach gave a hand by lending his expertise on the sonic enhancements, arrangement and mastering of the hypnotizing space/meditation music

The albums contains seven tracks, which act more like "phases". The "deep zone ambient" gently morphs through a harmonic pallet of soundscapes and spheres, carefully moulded from synths, electric guitar, samplers, didj, shamanic voice and percussion.

This long form ambient is suitable as relaxing, background and night music, sure when put on repeat mode.

Bert Strolenberg




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Melliflua review of Drift, August 2008



10 tracks. Running time 70:18
Dan Pound continues to churn out albums at a significant rate. The latest of these is Drift which is a welcome foray by the artist into more spacey realms than previously, but the mixture of "natural" instruments such as didgeridoo and singing bowls combined with synths and his chanty vocals is familiar.

Over the album there's an oppressive quality too many of the tracks. Not in a bad way though, it's kind of like seeing the world through a glass darkly or peering beyond the surface to unseen forces. This is true even of the title track "Drift" with its sonorous tones delicately undulating in the same way that the surface of a calm sea is pleasing yet hides mysterious depths. Discreet bell tinkles and restrained throaty chants add further interest to this marvellous opening piece.

What I found most rewarding is Dan's deft construction of sonic elements regardless of how heavy or light the atmosphere is. And when he does resort to rhythms, as on "Canyon Corridor", they're not obtrusive. One of my favourites is "Liquid Cavern" where various hued and pitched washes resonate and reverb to subconsciously immerse our imagination in a cavernous underwater space.

The most beautiful piece is the longest and closing track "Adrift" which includes a guitar sequence inspired and recorded by Steve Roach. Warm, ever so gently fluttering jewelled drones rise onto the soundscape like a sonic sunrise. This pattern is repeated by various drones rising and falling in slow motion as if they're waves made sluggish by massive gravity. Later in the guitar glides angelically in aching, almost heartrending, tones reminiscent of Jeff Pearce or Pete Kelly.

Drift shows that Dan is able to weave his magic in ambient and spacey mode as well as his trademark rhythmic shamanistic offerings. Yet again he's released another unique work, one that any ambient music listener is highly recommended to get hold of.




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July 2008, Sonic Curiosity reviews of "Lunar Effect" & "Drift".


The Dreamy Electronic Music of Dan Pound

For many years, Dan Pound has been making music that blends ambient and contemporary electronic music with remarkably appealing results. His style breathes invigorating vitality into atmospheric compositions, creating a bewitching bridge between the two genres.

Let's investigate his two latest albums...


Drift

This release from 2008 offers 70 minutes of dreamy electronic music.

Pound plays digital and analog synthesizers, guitar, didgeridoo, Native American flutes, Indonesian bell and singing bowl, shamanic vocal chants, frame drum, ocarina, processors and samplers, mixers and effects, various software and plugins. He is joined by ambient pioneer Steve Roach who inspired and recorded the guitar sequence on the final track.

This music superbly injects a melodic presence into textural flows, enriching an atmospheric sound with crystalline definition and delightful character.

Expansive tonalities generate widespread foundations that drift overhead, while additional electronics establish languid embellishment, fleshing out the harmonic structures with engaging auxiliary depth. The tone is generally kept sedate and gentle, evoking vast panoramas of vaporous sound.

Some pieces feature delicate percussives, utilized in understated layers which act as moody punctuations rather than any driving rhythmic force. A fragility is displayed by these soft pitters, mirroring the music's overall solemnity.

Flutes provide periodic feathery decoration, breathy wisps that waft like elusive breezes through the already zephyr-like nature of the music.

Vocal chants introduce a humanity to some pieces, giving nonverbal elucidation to the haunting tuneage.

The album's final track, "Adrift," is an 18 minute epic (compared to the 3-6 minute models that comprise most of the songs), allowing Pound's gentle stylings ample opportunity to flourish and evolve into a masterpiece of serene distinction. Ghostly guitar sustains wander through the pulsating mix, establishing a deportment of arid air currents.

These compositions convey an aerial disposition that displays subliminal power and imbues the listener with a congenial touch of inspiration. The gentility of the tunes is flavored with a stately presence that is easily mistaken for space music, although its roots are deeply terrestrial in their emotional content.



Lunar Effect

This CD from 2008 features 55 minutes of solemn electronic music.

While the basic model remains one dedicated to instilling tranquillity, livelier electronics are present on this release. Vibrant sequences cascade through a realm of mounting background tonalities.

Dense clouds of moody textures roil overhead, establishing a somber presence. Anywhere else, these dark tones might display ominous portends, but Pound utilizes them in a mode of building intensity that points the listener in the direction of glorious psychic insights.

A dreamy quality permeates these tunes, often enhanced by the dry contributions of trilling flutes that evoke an ancestral specter rising from the temperate harmonics.

Piano notes twinkle amid the glistening electronics, providing a grounding basis that links the music's astral mien with a human vantage for the experience.

A degree of percussion can be found. Generally tribal in nature, these rhythms adopt a remote presence. There are some instances of modern e-perc, but these tempos are still relegated to a muted position in the mix where the beats flow with the harmonies instead of becoming a force of propulsion.

These compositions are a tasty example of ambience that dares to employ invigorating elements. While never becoming energetic or strident, this music possesses an uplifting bearing that is quite engaging. Pound's manner of injecting powerful elements in a sea of calming atmospherics is tantalizing and highly rewarding.





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Review of LIQUID PLANET by Electroambient Space, March 2009


Liquid Planet is an excellent assortment of relaxing soundscapes that blend the best of ambient and new age styles. The title track features gentle electronics, definitely with a bubbly quality that makes one think of the liquid subject matter. Flutes add a soothing touch and an organic flavor that is a welcome presence in much of the music on the album. "Suspended Particles" is more synth-based but with equally tranquil tones. "Through the Layers" has a more playful tenor about it as bouncy sequencing forms its foundation. Pound lists Tangerine Dream as an influence, and this piece compares favorably with their mid-1980s sound. Each track is a gem, from abstract mood pieces like "Ocean of Stars" to shamanic new age like "Unknown Channel" with wordless vocals nicely blended in, to softer synthesizer passages like "Celestial Mermaid." Pound's playing and arranging are strong throughout the 17 tracks. In fact, the quality of the music on Liquid Planet is so impeccable that I find every single track enjoyable; I cannot recommend it highly enough.



© 2009 Phil Derby / Electroambient Space


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Nov, 2007 Sonic Curiosity reviews of "In-Sense", "Liquid Planet", and "Fire Within"



Dan Pound: Electronic Bridges between Tomorrow and Bygone Eras

Dan Pound is an American composer who bridges tomorrow and bygone eras with his blend of modern electronics and shamanistic wind instruments.




"Liquid Planet"

This release from 2006 features 70 minutes of fluid electronic music.

Delicate tonalities blend with airy electronics to produce haunting melodies of captivating charm. Atmospheric waves establish layers of ethereal harmonics which act as a luscious backdrop for more substantial electronic melodies.

Driven by pleasant keyboards, these melodies explore drifting pastiches of fragile demeanor. Although diverse in sound sources, the electronics are generally temperate and easygoing. Even the harsher passages evoke a tranquil response, delving into an intensity with craftily soothing properties. Meanwhile, the ephemeral melodies possess a restrained vitality that infuses the audience with psychological stamina.

Flutes contribute a fanciful edge to the spirit tunes, enhancing the overall flair of dreaminess embodied by the music. Didjeridoo provides a distinctly ancient flavor to some tracks, tastily complimenting the futuristic electronics with a touch of tribal ancestry.

Clocking in between three to six minutes long, these tracks afford the listener a variety of different compositions, ranging from deeply moody to languidly quirky. The central theme is a fluid sound, fragile and flowing, a template that Pound explores with inventive creativity. Each track provides a unique sonic dose of smoldering serenity. These tunes sparkle with intellectual promise.




"In-Sense"

This release from 2007 offers 70 minutes of sparkling electronic music.

With this release, Pound explores a sonic approximation of different light sources. His pulsating atmospherics evoke shimmering fields of luminosity, capturing borealis in the form of cascading tones of gentle character. The auxiliary electronics embellish this firmament with whimsical melodies of significant depth.

Rolling cycles accrete into lush expanses of glittering disposition. Keyboards accent the streaming sound with hints of lively emphasis, just sharp enough to rouse but not strident enough to jar.

Percussion is featured in a few tracks, lending cultivated locomotion to these seething pools of visible sound.

Again, flutes and didjeridoo inject breathy humanity to the tunes, the former seasoning the harmonic flow with pastoral airs, the latter impressing an antediluvian reverence on the wafting ambience.

While pacific and relaxing, these compositions exhibit an internal strength that seeps into the listener's psyche, unlocking ancestral memories and fusing these primitive instincts with impressions of optimistic tomorrows. A certain edginess lurks just beneath the surface, elevating the tunes from the ambient genre without spoiling things with undue animation.


These tracks are slightly longer (five to nine minutes), granting Pound the opportunity to unfurl his harmonic constructions with graceful eloquence.




"Fire Within"

This release from 2007 offers 61 minutes of energized ambience.

Delicate electronics blend with dense percussion to produce a delightful excursion into dark realms in strident need of illumination.

Atmospheric textures generate a moody backdrop, while crystalline keyboards describe airy chords that smolder with portentous stamina. Compact loops establish a floating character that is then tempered by additional cycles that rise to greater clarity as they gradually break free from their closure and explore alluring variations. Meanwhile, growling electronics appear here and there, producing gritty punctuation to the aerial sonic expressions.

Percussion plays a vital role in many of the pieces. By relegating otherwise dramatic rhythms to the distance, Pound creates an ephemeral locomotion that softly motivates yet remains suitably unintrusive. In one instance, supple bongos conjures a tribal flair, while another track employs decidedly mechanical tempos in counterpoint with optimistic flute strains.

Haunting didgeridoo lends a subtle arid disposition, while vocal effects bestow a yearning humanity to the tunes. One track even features a cameo by desert guitar.

These compositions display a comfortable sense of being adrift in one's own consciousness. The melodies are calm, yet powerful, evoking a stately presence of relaxed exploration. Harmonic structures combine to achieve delicately melodious soundscapes. With short spans of 5 to 7 minutes, these tunes are never allowed to grow indulgent, flourishing in their compact conditions and ripening into delicious doses of energized serenity.




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Review of "Tantra Majik"
Ambient Visions Dec. 2007

The title of Tantra Majik suggests some kind of sensual theme, and indeed there is. Dan Pound has designed this album to be aphrodisiac music, with the aim of getting "your fire started". Like his other albums this one uses synths, guitar, and ethnic instruments resulting in a by now expected primeval atmosphere.

In the opening track "Sheets of Skin" a pulsating rhythm slowly builds in intensity with chittering drums set against deep drones, washes, and tinkles. Brief "wah" effects provide some melodic interest alongside the driving rhythms that lead to a feeling of urgency! In contrast the following piece "Silk Dreams" has sensually understated drones and slowly melodic washes like a person luxuriating in a bed of silk.

Ethnic elements come out in the piece "Urge to Merge". Snippets of chant and free form musical effects lead into a ritualistic rhythm of thumping drums and percussion. Though this piece is presumably meant to be sultry the use of what sounds like panpipes alongside Dan's throaty chants makes it seem more like a pleasing yet curious blend of traditional Peruvian music and aboriginal rituals.

It's good to encounter a couple of non-rhythmic tracks, especially the last one called "After Hours" which is a lovely and languid way to close the album. Deep resonant drones, light and high pitched washes and refrains, and almost Vangelis-esque synth effects shooting off into the aether could lull you into a sleepy reverie.

I haven't tried playing Tantra Majik to my girlfriend yet to see what response it creates (!), but I can say that some tracks probably could work well as an accompaniment to some intimate time with a partner. Setting aside the purpose of the music, it is, like Dan's other albums, atmospheric and like nothing else out there I've heard recently.




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Sonic-Immersion review of "Dream Spaces"
by Bert Strolenberg
(Nov. 2007)

Dan Pound is an American, classically trained musician hailing from Santa Rosa, California. The last couple of years he specialized to composing ambient electronic and new age like music, and built quite a catalogue of privately composed and released works.

"Dream Spaces" is a work of introspection, in which the free form tranquil soundscapes meander and unfold in a slow pace. They are intended "to accompany a variety of activities that are quiet and require a non obtrusive environment".

Although I wished the overall sound was a bit warmer, the eight tracks on the album offer a lush textural ambience which makes the mind wander and relax at the same time.

I think this works out best on soft drone-fields and lush swirls of "Feeding the Moon", although the album as a whole breathes an intense atmosphere and deep immersion which suits well for meditation and what Dan calls "deep zone exploration".

This is a proper album of deep textures that makes your mind slow down in these busy times.




-------------------------------------------------------------------------------Ambient Ambient Visions review of "Fire Within"
(Oct 2007)


"Coming thick and fast from Dan Pound are his ambient/shamanistic fusion albums. Another recent work is Fire Within, a slightly less intense exploration of Dan's now signature style and sounds. For me these works often conjure up images of the Australian outback and aboriginal rituals around fires in the darkness of night.

A particularly atmospheric piece is the opener "New Beginning" where drawn out chants conjure up images of American Indians supplicating to their gods. The haunting nature of this piece is increased by eerie pads, whistles, and occasional low growls of a didgeridoo; while a rolling rhythm of bright notes gives a sense of being on a journey.

The resonances throughout the album are often deep and throaty. A guitar effect is introduced on "Carrying the Flame" in despondent refrains giving a feeling of dusty plains and tumbleweeds blowing by. A centre stage throbbing rhythm comes in along with various pads whistling across the soundfield, and animalistic effects inhabit the backdrop like wildlife seen from afar.

No album with shamanistic themes would be complete without at least one especially hypnotic piece. Here it's "Calling the Spirits" in which percussion like shaken sand combines with hallucinogenic drum rhythms, atavistic chants, and pads worming their way round the soundscape.

Listening to a Dan Pound album is to take a journey back to mankind's earlier days where unspoilt landscapes provide a home to people whose lives revolve around survival and placating the spirits and gods. The integration of modern electronics with voice, didgeridoo, drums, and natural percussion is seamless, lifting both above what they could have otherwise been.

In Fire Within Dan Pound manages to explore similar musical territory to his previous releases yet still subtly develops his style enough to retain listener interest".




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Melliflua review of "Dream Spaces"
(Aug 2007)


Another album from Dan Pound's rapidly growing discography is Dream Spaces, a work designed to accompany such things as meditation, yoga, and massage. This is inner spacemusic exploring the world of spirit and imagination; different in tone and pace to some of his rhythm based works. Here the sense of mystery is palpable, the impression sometimes being of sound sculpted in a manner reminiscent of Igneous Flame albums such as Tolmon.

The opening track "Starlight Starbright" gently lulls the listener into a reverie. An unobtrusive see-sawing melody of dim notes makes a comforting backdrop to glassy refrains which come and go like the filtered beam of passing cars seen through a bedroom window.

In "Feeding the Moon" throbbing washes and spacey rippling and echoing notes create an atmosphere of wonder and mystery. Some of the sounds and structure of this piece brought to mind parts of Kitaro's album The Light of the Spirit. A kind of sister piece is "Beyond the Blue" where the washes have a glassy and spectral quality, and the rippling elements are replaced by shy melodic whistles and gossamer refrains.

A common structure throughout the album is the use of washes where sounds rise into the soundscape and then fall away. The variety is in the tones and resonance. Whereas some pieces have a dark and heavy atmosphere others are lighter. A track which is now one of my favourites after an initial indifference is the wonderful and ghostly final piece "Voices". Periodically sizzling metallic strands of sound brush past while washes of wordless vocals like angels calling to each other glide over a slowly pulsating and distant rumbling drone.

Dream Spaces is a quietly intense work ideal for concentrated listening and letting oneself go into another world. There's a lot to explore in the sonically rich and deep atmospheres which would doubtless be best appreciated on a good pair of headphones.



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(June 2007)

Imaginative and highly fertile ambient music from the minds of Steve Roach, vidna Obmana, Tangerine Dream, and Michael Hoenig, are memorable in that they address change and transitions encapsulated within the folds of emotions and personal philosophy. That intensity is successfully reflected by the compositions of excellent sound masters in that they can create a world, populate it with a directed existence, and the music can do the work in the listener. And there are all kinds of works, some happy, some dark, and some a curious mix of the two.

Dan Pound, a talent that we have reviewed in the past, is an independent composer who has composed over 20 titles. Working within the same realms that the previously mentioned composers make their sound pulses, Dan Pound understands the importance of making clear contact with the spaces within ourselves in order to create effectively. Everflow, one of his later works produced in 2006, is an album of 10 songs that follow no particular theme, instead working shaman-styled, American Indian music alongside dark introspective pieces and space music. The longest ambient work, "Pulse," is just shy of 8-minutes and is a deep-space explorative float. "Bringing It Home" is a great 7-minute piece that is a rhythmic American Indian dream experience.

Everflow has many good song ideas contained within it. I'm a fervent fan of extended pieces that allow for a long immersion, black space that lets you slip the airstream of this world and travel in your mind to places even if it is to walk amongst fear-inducing industrial menace, much like Obmana, and Alio Die create. I'd place Pound in the same company as Steve Roach, who is more accustomed to producing spiritual shamanistic pieces, although Roach may be the most accomplished in every angle of ambient music.
However, most of the songs are in the 5-6 minute range, which can be a disruption to some.

I haven't heard any extended works from Dan Pound, whose music that I have heard are excellent embryonic pieces that could easily make that transition to larger universes. Everflow is a travelogue that addresses points of interest, if only as a tour guide. It shows easily enough that he can handle the ambient flow of most styles. Dan, pick a theme and give me three movements over 70 minutes; I'd love to hear your creativity in full capacity.

To potential ambient listeners, I'd like to challenge and ask, how fertile is your imagination?





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Aural Innovations review of "Solar Nexus", "Liquid Planet", and "Heat Waves".
(May 2007)


A trio of agreeable albums by this California native that draws heavily from the well spring of contemporary European electronic music (Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Vangelis, Jean-Michel Jarre) as well as its American cross-currents (Steve Roach, Michael Stearns, Michael Garrison). As with his antecedents, much of Pound's repertoire is based on broadly cosmological themes; consequently, the much abused and overworked term "space music" would probably adequately characterize all three discs. Though no instrumentation is listed, pound employs a variety of synthesizers, percussion and a sprinkling of guitars and ethnic gear (didgeridoo and shakuhachi flute, for example) to propel his voyages into otherworldly realms. Solar Nexus is perhaps the most "American"-influenced of the three discs, featuring as it does a soundscape architecture at times reminiscent of Steve Roach's The Magnificent Void (especially on deep space reconnaissance tracks like "Core Surface" and "Biosphere") and the later work of Robert Rich. Like Roach, Rich and to some degree Stearns, pound has a predilection for resonant chords augmented by the ambiance of massive plate reverbs-an effect which produces an undeniably sublime aural space on the album's closing track "Eclipse." Liquid Planet adds a more ethereal touch to Pound's sonic palette, incorporating elements of Fourth World neo-tribalism to counterpose his longing for astral navigations. As a consequence, many of the pieces on Liquid Planet have a vaguely "new age" feel that occasionally recalls the work of Emerald Web (particularly Lights of the Ivory Plains) and Roach's Dreamtime Return. Still, tracks like "Orbit Crossing," "Dark Star" and "Watchers of Infinity" resound with the spirit of the Cosmic Couriers, sometimes eerily evocative of Moondawn-era Schulze or the classic mid-period of Tangerine Dream. Heat Waves combines the strongest elements of both Solar Nexus and Liquid Planet. Both airy and earthbound, the best tracks on Heat Waves feature a plenitude of tribal percussion, ethnic samples, sweeping synthesizers and ghostly didgeridoo to evoke atmospheres both mystical and mesmerizing. "Warming of the Tides" and "Light of Being" are particularly effective in their fusion of tribalism and cosmic futurism. The extended track "Backward in Time" spirals in waves of multi-timbral synths and some very seductive e-bowed guitar over top a pulsing rhythm section. For this reason, though Solar Nexus and Liquid Planet are good in their own right, Heat Waves surpasses both and is therefore the better bet for the curious and the uninitiated.




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Melliflua review of "Everflow"
(Mar 2007)

"Another recent self-released album by Dan Pound is Everflow. It's got a similar style to Solar Nexus in terms of instrumentation and the shamanistic feel but is less intense - hallucinogenic-lite is perhaps one way of describing it! The commissioned covert art for this release doesn't provide an answer to the mystery of the music, so this is a CD that can't be judged by its cover.

In the first track "Taking Flight" we encounter Dan's typical music elements of rippling sequences, didgeridoo, shamanistic voices, electronics, flutes, singing bowls etc. The conglomeration of these sounds results in an kaleidoscopic effect that verges on the primeval. Just this aspect of Dan's work would be enough to make his work interesting, but it's also enjoyable - and even mesmeric in places.

For pure enjoyment my favourite piece has to be "Hand in Hand". Melodic and subdued clattering begins the piece and is joined by a simple melodic rhythm on what I think is acoustic guitar. The rhythm then picks up with bass and percussion while half voice-half flutey refrains add an air of mystery. It's up to the listener to decide who he's walking hand-in-hand with.

Rhythm is a strong element throughout the album, yet some pieces are mainly based on atmospherics. This is most apparent in "Remembering the Dream" where fat airy drones undulate across the soundscape like waves of subconscious thought while a slow tribal rhythm fills out the backdrop. Snippets of half-discerned effects continually intrude in the distance and throaty didgeridoo and flutes add more obvious sonic interest.

Along with the electronics there's an earthy, organic quality that permeates Everflow making it shamanistic music for the 21st century. For anyone looking for something different than run of the mill new age or world music this is an album well worth checking out."




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Yoga Magazine review of "Impressions"
(Feb 2007)


"Dan Pound has long been producing intelligent multi-layered music, and his CD "Impressions" takes us on a cerebral journey through ambient landscapes. Listing Brian Eno and Tangerine Dream among his influences, Dan has fused electronic and acoustic instruments to create a cinematic soundtrack for a far off world inhabited by exotic birds and wildlife. The tempo gently increases throughout the CD culminating in the track "last impression" which is my favorite.
"Impressions" in an intelligent and engaging piece of work that can be used to accompany yoga and meditation exercises, or used to relax and unwind with at home."




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EarBuzz Review of "Liquid Planet":

"Dan Pound's 17-track CD, "Liquid Planet", is an ambiant electronic collection of pads, strings, and environmental sound tapestries that are intended to relax and inspire. The title track, "Liquid Planet", reminds us of the cosmos with a liquid center. Track 3, "Through the Layers", begins with a sawtooth pattern with oscillating and perculating sounds as the multiple figures and voices combine. Track 4, "Moment with the Machines", is an eerie rotating mix. Track 10, "Dark Star", brings in a bit more percussion than previous tracks. There's an opening and closing vocoder sounding element that supports the sparse hits and stabs. Our favorite track, "Above and Below", grooves a bit - with a dance loop that supports Pound's experimental keyboard work. The sum total is a record of mystery that could provide interesting ambiance to a life or a soundtrack. . or both."

Earbuz.net



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Aural Innovations review of "Trance Meditation" (original version)
(August 2006)

"On his web site, Dan Pound refers to his music as ambient electronic, new age, shamanic, deep-zone space music. I can hear all of these elements in this recording, but with a definite emphasis on the deep-zone space music direction. Trance Meditation is divided into seven tracks (titled Trance Meditation Parts 1 through 7), but it is really one entire, nearly hour-long journey into the outermost reaches of the universe. The 10-minute long opening track is pure space music, with icy, minimalist atmospherics, cosmic winds and deep galactic breaths. This definitely sets the tone for the entire rest of the work, but as the journey continues, elements like didgeridoo, occasional shamanic vocalizations, and subtle rhythms emerge from the mix, adding a warmer, organic element to the chilling spacescapes, without being intrusive or taking over. Towards the end Dan even adds some bell like sequences and some subtle symphonic textures. But these touches are nicely restrained, allowing the music to be what it really wants to be. At its heart, Trance Meditation is still all about space. And this space is deep, and definitely worth exploring."




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"Music Tap" review of "Impressions"
(Jan 2007)

It is good when independently produced works, those that lack even the alternative label support, spring up and show some bite. Dan Pound, whose self-released Impressions is a collection of Tangerine Dream/ Steve Roach/vidna Obmana-like soundscapes that employ the same spacey sounds, all generated by computers. If a suggestion can be offered it is this, with ambient works, the usage of themes, even if not implied, push the music further and is longer lasting.

Impressions uses an Altoids-like approach in that you can pull out a tune for the moment and enjoy the effect that it supplies.




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Melliflua review of "Solar Nexus"
(Dec 2006)



13 tracks. Running time 63:13
Dan Pound is an independent musician who specialises in ambient, acoustic new age, world, and soundtrack music created in his home studio. His album Solar Nexus is one of the more intriguing works to have come my way recently. Described as shamanistic spacemusic this is unlike any spacemusic or ethnic styled album I've heard before.

Though the track titles ground the themes in all things solar, the music conveys the feeling that we're experiencing it through the hallucinations of a shaman performing sacred rituals. This is done by the use of tribal rhythms, chants, and rhythms. Often these are layered so much that repeated listening sessions are needed to fully appreciate all that is going on.

Listening to Solar Nexus brings to mind Steve Roach's On This Planet, partly because of the tribal motifs but more so the intensity. Whereas Roach's rhythms can feel tacked onto the spacey atmospherics and washes they are an integral part of Dan's sound.

It's especially easy to lose oneself in the longest and frenetic track "Spectrum". In this multi-layered piece thrumming notes vie with hi-hat percussion and drummed rhythms to be the most hypnotic. All the while tinkling notes, spooky washes, and animal calls add to the phantasmagoric effect. The shamanistic element is particularly strong in the track "In the Time of Helios" where chants and low growling didgeridoo conjure up images of aboriginal ceremonies round fires in the outback at night.

About half the album is gentler and less intense. In "Once a Planet" slow hand beaten drums play out against various reverbing drones panning across the soundscape while the atmosphere is adorned with whistles, distant clanking sounds, and wordless chants ranging from ethereal to guttural.

For me Solar Nexus is one of the hottest releases of the year; a pleasantly hallucinogenic musical trip through aspects of a star. This is a new take on a genre usually known for floating/drifting atmospheres or traditional sequencing.



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Ping Things review of "Solar Nexus"
(Dec 2006)



A beautiful soundworld of aural atmospheres and environments incorporating electronic and acoustic instruments.

With the release of his disc "Solar Nexus", Dan Pound presents his audience with a seemless blend of organic and synthesized sounds which together create a beautiful journey through ambient spaces.

Opening track "Prism" features a wandering arpegio that plays amidst a bed of undulating pads, tones stretching and bending around each other like liquid mercury. It's a beautiful beginning, something that brings to mind the dawn, the start of a new day. Stunning.

"Spectrum" opens with a glistening cascade of bells blending in with a steadily pulsing synth track. There's a very vibrant energy inherent in this track, a very metropolitan feel to it that grows as percussion is added to the mix. Yet despite that vibrancy, that energy, the track remains beautiful and calm, relaxing in some ways.

"Life Force" presents a deep rolling bass line underneath a low and plaintive melody played alternately by woodwinds and vocals. It's a very space-y track, something very cosmic sounding and celestial despite it's organic flavour. A very interesting mixture of sounds and textures.

"Rhythm of Lights" uses a variety of sequenced synth lines to create a veritable wall of synthesized sound. It's a very rich track, something very full in terms of the depth of sound presented, something composed of many levels to explore and discover.

"Sunset Rain" takes on a much more natural feel than previous tracks, using a much more organic sounding orchestration. String instruments play lovely melodies and themes, truly capturing the sound of a light rain at dusk. It's a lovely piece of music.

"Harnessing the Flame" also uses organick instruments, blending sequenced tracks with dijiridoo. The wailing sound of breath works really well here, giving the track a depth and mystery that I find both intriguing and mesmerizing.

"Once a Planet" brilliantly captures the sound of the void, bringing sound to the emptiness through sparse pads, minimal percussion and an emotional vocalization. It's a stunning track, something that really stands out on the disc as a perfect tonal mixture that represents a variety of moments and emotions. Absolutely stunning.

"Core Surface" features metallic tones drifting through the soundstream. It's a very moody track, enigmatic and thought provoking as it slowly moves towards completion. A lovely example of dark ambience used as counterpoint to an otherwise (mostly) bright work.

"In the Time of Helios" is another track that employs vocals, this time more pronounced, more up front in the mix. Flute and percussion weave and bob around the piece as well creating a tribal feel to the piece. It's a very powerful track, something that really resonates on a primal level, arguably my favorite track on the disc.

"Chromosphere" makes use of percussion paired with a steady arpeggio and a selection of pads, bridging the gap between the tribal sounds of the preceeding track with the more electronically based sound of the next piece. It's very nicely done and works well not only as a bridge between ideas, but also as it's own independant work.

Title track "Solar Nexus" opens with rising and falling tones playing underneath otherworldly vocals. As the song progresses rapid beats build in strength, sizzling with an intensity that suggests a star or a supernova. The sound of the cosmos runs throughout this track, infusing it with a sense of both beauty and mystery.

"Biosphere" pairs a beautiful guitar loop with the sound of a jungle or forest, pads drifting through the distance deep in the soundfield. It's a hypnotic track, one that lulls you into a sense of peace and calm. Beautiful in it's simplicity, simply beautiful.

"Eclipse" closes the disc with minimal instrumentation, a repeating melody and little else. It's all very simple and yet it connects so well with me as a listener, it stirs exactly the right emotions and ideas. A lovely way to end the disc.

Without doubt "Solar Nexus" is a disc that does everything right, that brings together styles and forms in the best ways possible to create something beautiful and engaging. I very much enjoyed this release and I strongly recommend it to anybody who likes to be able to connects on a deep level with their music.

rik - ping things




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Sonic Curiosity Review of "Heat Waves"

It takes inventive guts to combine didjeridoo with metallic percussion, but Pound has the skill to pull it off with tasty flair. Lighthearted electronics generate a strange backdrop for this contrast, punctuated by more tender rhythms and brief outbursts of vocal elation.

Subsequent tracks continue to reflect this predilection for mixing modern sounds with ancient timbres. Haunting electronics drift in tandem with primitive chants. Snappy tempos are dogged by breathy didjeridoo textures while guttural mutterings summon piercing tones into prominence. Ethnic percussives pitter with lively agitation while drones of ominous character surge into an enveloping cloud.

The percussives provide a sharply modern edge for the tribal disposition produced by the moody electronics. The constant presence of didjeridoo and shamanistic chants enhances these primitive aspects, which are in turn violated by the futuristic flair created by the synthesizers' crisp wailings and shuddering pulsations.

The rhythms are softly dynamic and suitably stimulating when mixed with the eerie soundscapes that are produced by the coexistence of tribal instruments and technological machinery.

Pound's eccentric approach of fusing old and new styles is satisfying and highly engaging. His compositions establish thrilling intersections between exotic yesterdays and mysterious tomorrows.

Soniccuriosity.com