Zyl, Chuck van

He host the long running radio program of spacey soundscapes STAR'S END, which has been on the air at public radio station WXPN in Philadelphia since 1976. Every weekend from 1:00am Saturday night until 6:00am Sunday morning will find him at the FM broadcast studio spinning a wealth of Ambient, Ethereal and Spacemusic. Having originated The Gatherings Concert Series in 1992 initially as a listener get-together, in 2003 he founded The Corporation for Innovative Music and Arts of PA, and the series has continued as an independent, volunteer-run, IRS recognized non-profit organization ever since. Focusing on Electronic, Ambient, Space and other innovative music, The Gatherings has presented concerts with dozens of recognized and emerging musicians from all over the world. Performing Spacemusic in collaborations solo since the mid-1980s he has played live at an interesting range of venues and released numerous CDs, most recently with guitarist Art Cohen in our duo The Ministry of Inside Things. In 2009 he has been getting back to basics with several solo concerts and work on a solo studio CD.

Zyl, Chuck van
Chuck van Zyl + Gulch - Regeneration Mode

Artist: Chuck van Zyl + Gulch
P:
1994
"Regeneration Mode" is an album by the duo Chuck van Zyl and Peter D. Gulch (both known from the project The Nightcrawlers) filled with vintage, but most of all adventurous and future electronic music.
It’s cosmic music pur sang, now and then briefly tapping in the heritage of the Berliner School style of the early '70’s while taking the listener out on a 60-minute atmospheric trip through the vast unknown.
The highly cinematic outcome though is less traditional. A deep sense of mystery already announces itself on the strong, almost 30-minute album opener "Sector Zero Zero One". It’s a beautifully moulded sonic sci-fi story through dense soundscapes with quite some turns and twists along the ride.
The album continues with four shorter pieces that keep immersing in darkening, dense atmospheric moods. Its compelling and robotic-like sound design stays away from the comfort mode, as alienating effects and quite some some industrial elements pass by. On "The Automatons", its like Patrick Kosmos is shortly taking over the control panels.
All in all, "Regeneration Mode" is outer space music with stark textures and a firm high-tech rim, making a fascinating sonic travel guide to possible future worlds beyond.


Here the last copy!

24,50 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Cenotaph

Artist: Chuck van Zyl
P:
2012
Real influenced by the german electronic from around the 70ies.
Over the course of his musical existence Chuck van Zyl has developed a signature exploratory style. By blending the primitive machine beauty of classics like Ricochet with the highly formed values of more recent groups such as Redshift and Arc, his solo studio works are the result of a persistent creativity. With Cenotaph (70'22") Chuck van Zyl has melded the intimate with the epic. Fans will find the results of this release riveting. Its tone veers from synthesized and atmospheric, to the reckless energized pulse of tumbling sequencer patterns, on down to a somber interiority - moving between the three in an impressive aural narrative. With plenty of cool modulated effects, ethereal Mellotron begot harmonies and melodies, and interlinked shifting arpeggios Cenotaph seems timeless in its purity.
Along with an arsenal of electronic instruments, key in producing the hallmark sounds of classic cosmic music, is van Zyl's sense of pacing, arrangement and contour. His lead lines hover wistfully above the throbbing pulse of interlocking, multi-layered sequencer patterns which race ahead then diminish into swirling ether. The compositions are restrained, rendered without any sharp edges, and posses a Berlin School authenticity of both tone and spirit - right down to the yearning of a generation seeking to find its place in the cosmos.
With his solid melodic invention, atmospheric modulations and heroic shifts in tonality, van Zyl masterfully realizes the fascinating patterns, riffs and pulses that dominate the tracks on Cenotaph. As the five pieces form, climb and sustain, listeners are pulled into a highly distinctive mindscape. Tone patterns weave and collide as go-for-broke keyboard lead lines dance above - while synthetic strings draw long lines across a cool digital plane. Chuck van Zyl is at home in this endlessly inventive genre, offering ample muscle for the adventurous, archaic modulations for the experimentalist and dreamy floating space for the cloudwalker.
Layers of mechanistic patterns grow, synchronize then switch direction and color in breathtaking dexterity - mixing, shifting and dividing in a twisting double helix of echoing electronic tones. Progressing through their brawny phase these performances then gently turn ethereal and otherworldly. Moving into the quiet drama and dark imaginings of the misty reality between sleep and wakefulness the delicate blending of sounds and re-circulating structures pulls us into deeper levels of our own mind.
Exercising his capabilities for symbolism, imagination and creativity van Zyl summons a mysterious cosmic energy - emanating from the nexus of technology and thought. Spacemusic fans know of a new way of listening, as the construct of music has dematerialized into a heightened inexpressible experience. But the greatest music reaches past the initiated.
Chuck van Zyl hits on all the major aspects of this genre, his melodies are human, rhythms machine-like, harmonies ethereal and the range of timbres he creates to voice his music are original and extraordinary. This music is a sincere exploration of the mood and mystery of the Spacemusic genre. With a strong core idea and strong execution Cenotaph offers vast sonic riches. Here we find an intelligence extending beyond the cold logic of machines - as well as a significant contribution to a most intriguing musical universe. The man who made this music is in this music - attending to his own inner theater. Chuck van Zyl makes us believe that we have not just listened to his work, but lived it.

17,80 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Gwynedd

Artist: Chuck van Zyl 
P: 2023
LTD 100

Gwynedd (61:21), the concert album by noted Electronic Musician Chuck van Zyl, presents two tracks. “The Electric Metric” (20:11) and “Mesmerism Mechanism” (41:10) represent his complete performance of 9 April 2022 as part of the continuing series at Gwynedd Friends Meeting Coffee House in Gwynedd, PA.
Loaded with Berlin-School patterns, drifting chords and spacey melodies this concert was attended by a group completely new to the Spacemusic genre and genuinely open to experiencing a unique performance. Moved by the history of the venue, the clear sound system and welcoming listeners, an inspired performance arose over two sets.
As Chuck’s improvisations resolved into a rousing sense of propulsion, decorous creamy synth leads hovered wistfully above the whirling pulse of interlocking, multi-layered sequencer turns – which raced ahead, then diminished into a swirling atonal ether. As energy built out in assemblies of machine precision, ethereal chords and modulated effects lightened the texture and atmosphere of the music. The occasion provided the opportunity for Chuck to build on a deep list of previous concert experiences and offered a meaningful opportunity to advance his craft, further his artistry, and venture into a new sonic frontier before a receptive, perceptive audience. From deep space gateways and rising arpeggio runs, to heedless heights of improvisation, on down to its quietly consuming fields, Gwynedd invites the listener to re-experience the wonder of concert music by Chuck van Zyl.

16,90 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Live on Star's end 10.06.19

Artist: Chuck van Zyl 
P: 2019

This is the entire concert that Chuck van Zyl did at the Radio Station porgram Stars End. An entire live set improvised by the master of the Berlin School in the United States, A pure listening pleasure.

15,90 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Live On Star’s End 2021-2022 (3CD)

Artist: Chuck van Zyl
P:
2023
LTD 300

Across three discs Live on Star’s End 2021-2022 (196’30”) presents the Chuck van Zyl live to air concerts of 7 February 2021 and 7 August 2022, plus his 26 March 2021 performance for SoundQuest Fest 2021. Each occasion built on the one that came before, and offered meaningful opportunities to advance his craft, further his artistry, and venture into a new sonic frontier. In discharging audio from electricity works by Chuck van Zyl sing the song of the synthesizer. Searching through the cosmos, as well as his own imagination, he plays in the true spirit of exploration. Each of the realizations documented on Live on Star’s End 2021-2022 builds toward a destination unknown at the outset. Beginning with nothing more than the spark of an idea, the wall outlet powers his instruments, while the logic of improvisation, the force of emotion, and materiality of sound provide the direction and form. This album supposes that the mind is still big, that thoughts are still vast, and offers no option to think small. After a deep listening it will be hard not to hear this strange magic everywhere. Throughout this epic release we find a machine pulse propelling scales of notes. Radiating with each tight turn into widening arcs of mechanized certainty, sequencer lines solidly motor on. An unconstrained affair, the music winds out in cycling patterns of melodic invention – skipping and echoing with a determined energy. Thoughtful and as tightly coiled as ever, notes fly in and out of the mix, rising and receding in practiced precision. The assembly of tones and textures, somewhere between sonic storm and soothing sigh, stutters, sputters, then whispers a tale of electronic circuits dreaming. From the sculpted and soft to the ambiguously toned, at times these live sets use negative space to delineate form – placing the listener on intimate terms with the present moment. With an ethereal human harmony hanging gently in the air, a beautiful animation is brought to an often impassive music. Live on Star’s End 2021-2022 will be difficult to abandon to the background. The coolly controlled concerts conjure a rare dream logic – a kind of beauty which always passes too quickly. Yet, from these monumental acts of invention comes the theme of intimacy. In his unforced experimentation Chuck van Zyl discovers hidden affinities. From the raw and power packed on down to the subtle and dulcet, these works recall the spirit of the Berlin-School – and the charged sparks of an exploratory, voltaic realm.

24,90 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Recitals (2CD)

Artist: Chuck van Zyl
P: 2016

"Recitals" (2016) is the live solo CD by Chuck van Zyl. Extending the trajectory of "MemorySpace" (2010), "Cenotaph" (2012) and "Rituals" (2014), this double live album is scheduled to be released by Synkronos Music on 12 November 2016 - to coincide with the Chuck van Zyl performance at The Gatherings Concert Series.
Meant to exhibit something of an untamed interior life, Chuck van Zyl hopes his concerts are part of an ongoing chain of innovation. His carefully realized designs are based on a consistent, timbral grammar developed through decades of work. As artists bring greater clarity to their vision over a lifetime, with further live experiences Chuck van Zyl has become more proficient at his craft, and more of who he is musically. Injecting emotion and expression into what would otherwise appear to be a formal exercise, his concerts are a manifestation of his urge to tell.
The double CD "Recitals" presents music recorded at five May 2016 performances, and like contemporaneous works by Redshift, Node and Arc, draws on higher-order capacities. His shows for Event Horizon, MUSIC WITH SPACE, STAR'S END, DIGITAL DREAMS and Digital Underground were documented with an ordinary two-track recording device. After months of review, two 70+ minute sonic journeys were produced, and released as "Recitals". Each event offered an essential setting, audience and atmosphere - as well as its own unique challenge.
To better connect with his audience, van Zyl set up his equipment among them, explaining that they were welcome to observe him up close as he traversed the next hour's worth of of unrestricted sonic space (video documents of each concert have been posted for truer scrutiny of these performances). Through an impressive collection of vintage and modern synthesizers and keyboards, electricity was transformed into sound, and we were lifted into infinite spaces.
Beckoning toward the eternal, reverberant Mellotron flutes and strings light out in expressive fanciful flights. In a brace of free improvisation van Zyl flaunts angelic harmonies, just as easily as he mines subterranean frequencies - all in keening consonant concord. Each movement finds portent sounds building dense harmonic forms, out of which emerges motoric sequencer patterns. These echoing interlocking runs of notes expand, contract and breakdown in ever heightening circles. The mounting compositional tension, released in our minds as impressionistic cerebration, feels energizing. Minor key chords slowly sweep across the sound field. Synthetic drones hold, darken, then lighten, informing the music's mood. In an ascending rush, then a descending calm, we depart our more common thoughts... for mysterious regions. Eventually we find the end of this journey, as the music resolves, and settles the listener into the drifting dream of gently humming circuits and charged solid states.
"Recitals" is a wonderful example of van Zyl's talent for spontaneous composition within the context of an improvised live performance. It is a reflection, realized through action, intervened upon by spontaneity, which leads the listener into contemplation - and a wonderful reverie realm.
Chuck van Zyl relentlessly seeks to identify the greater virtues of Electronic Music - yet enjoys the fact that his endeavors still hold some secrets. "Recitals" features works of passionate intensity, and is for anyone seeking a deeper examination of sound and mood. It pulls us through a spiraling cerebral cosmos - where a musician finds his moment.

22,50 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Recitals Vol. 2 (2CD)

Artist: Chuck van Zyl
P: 2018

Chuck van Zyl has been a man finding his moment, in any live space that will hold him. The double CD Recitals 2 presents music recorded at two late 2017 performances. His shows for The 6th Floor and DIGITAL DREAMS were documented with an ordinary two-track recording device. After months of review, two 60+ minute sonic journeys were produced, and released as Recitals 2.
The possibilities of Electronic Music make it the perfect tool for exploring spontaneous composition. Recitals 2 is an example of two such events - both without a pre-determined outcome - where the gathered and the musician experienced the music together. A receptive audience brings out van Zyl's strengths, while the hushed space receives his work. The heat of this struggle melds into the music and spirit, softening and melting, then hardening and tempering the player. Each of this album's two concerts moves powerfully and naturally, unsettling the world into which they intercede. A musician of the imagination van Zyl's seeks the pure delight of providing an epic intimacy in the digital age. Determined to conjure kinetic joy an animating force tickles your mind and tugs on your heart - as agile sequencer antics thrill and the vulnerability of improvisation connects. In ever strengthening whirlpools of thought, rows of echoing tone patterns are deployed. Amidst the lines of echoing, dancing arpeggio notes a racing heart turns, runs and trills in melodic invention. Heroic keyboard leads and Mellotron harmonies peak over a pumping, commanding bassline - only later to be drawn down into shifting shadows of sustaining synthesized textures and a quiet sense of mystery. While cliff-high chords stall the dramatic momentum, an infinity of volumes provides a feeling of elation and abandon - only to descend to a skeletal negative space and a bewitching haze of free form randomness.

Recitals 2 takes each member of its audience on their own personal journey. With its deep space gateways and brilliant, skull crushing sequencer breakdowns, from the heights of its combustible, cut loose, superb heedlessness, on down to its quietly ominous consuming dark fields, this music invites wonder. Beginning with simple electronic devices and ending with the multi-dimensional world known only to the imaginative, Chuck van Zyl harnesses the machinery of night. Unblinking, completely in control, he performs in a cool constraint. It is remarkable that, after so many years, the creative flame still burns bright. His concerts are a probe of the calm facade, of the internal mystery - and reach towards the unseen depths within us all. Recitals 2 tells a powerful story of an exhilarated mind - a mind roaming well beyond the concert stage.

19,90 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Recitals Vol. 3 (2CD)

Artist: Chuck van Zyl
P: 2019

In most live improvisations a player is trying to transcend their instrument – but live concerts for Chuck van Zyl are an attempt to transcend a system. The double CD Recitals 3 arrives with high expectations and from the start it delights and transports. The live concert, the flickering shadow of the soul is where moment by moment this music was realized – as it is here that Chuck van Zyl uncovers the secret of his own operation.
Disc 1 (71’39”) includes music from live performances for MUSIC WITH SPACE, Johnny Brenda’s and NEEM Fest 2018 and moves from the dolorous to the ecstatic in a balance of opposing tensions. As if upon the workings of some powerful engine the music moves deliberately in sequencer steps rather than abruptly in leaps. A symphony of thought, “The Weakening Eye of Day” fascinates the mind, captivates the heart, and stimulates the imagination.
Disc 2 (76’05”) features extracts from the abstract passages of five performances, and hopes to bypass the conscious sensibilities for a direct connection to that which is elemental. Notes collide, collude and combine. Each movement comes at you in a ramble of melody, a search of harmony, a flight of timbre. In “To the Close and Holy Darkness” we hear a unity in the arrangement and the message conveyed.
The music found on Recitals 3 displays the glimmer of imaginative energy that has graced Chuck van Zyl’s music for over 30 years. Conjoining disparate impulses it evokes cycles of collapse and renewal. Gorgeously colored, weighty in theme, style and construction this music reaches into the world of the surreal – in a profound poem of electricity.

19,90 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - Rituals

Artist: Chuck van Zyl
P:
2014
As one who devotes so much time to delivering music to the world, it is good to see radio show host, reviewer and concert producer Chuck van Zyl also spending time at being an Electronic Musician. His release "Rituals" (57'01") is one of Spacemusic's sonic miracles. An album with incomparable penetration Rituals is so alluring and ingenious that listeners will find its atmosphere of cosmic yearning on an equal level with that of its ceaseless sonic invention. The mood and message of this third volume extends the trajectory of his two previous CDs. While "MemorySpace" (2010) and "Cenotaph" (2012) took two years each to conceive, concertize, record and produce, "Rituals" (2014) took just two weeks. Using modular systems, a variety of modern analog synthesizers and sequencers and operating at an emotional and enthusiastic pitch, van Zyl realizes music that possesses as much the buzz and crackle of electricity as it does the frigid black of space. From his instrument's storm force of sound comes delightful throbbing bass lines, echo-warping chimes and a mystery machine pulse, against which van Zyl sways and plays Rhodes piano, synth strings, Mellotron choir and full-blooded melodies. Staccato synthesizer blips interlock and pound out mighty sequencer patterns, yet this mechanical rigidity is somehow softened - as lines of dancing arpeggios pump up against tuneful leads and ethereal harmonic progressions. Disarmingly quiet passages reduce the level of density and energy with insinuating modulations and vaporous aural forces. "Rituals" pushes and pulls itself, expands and contracts, and manages to establish an interesting contour through various scenarios and scenes... to attain a rare unity. Offering vivid synthesized sonorities the appeal lies in its minimalist values and in this musician's ability to create an intimate and absorbing listening experience. As with albums by Arc and Redshift "Rituals" has an immediacy that can overwhelm, yet its cosmic beauty is easily experienced over and over. The creative act is the one defense against the ruin of the world. Singing the mental electric with an inventive sonic flair Chuck van Zyl makes music that fills up the empty spaces and places of life. Embracing the early-day attitudes of the Kosmische Musik movement, he transcends them - elevating the most familiar themes to another sphere. Anyone in love with Spacemusic and its very specific poetry will want to hear this recording.

17,80 EUR
 
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Chuck van Zyl - SpaceTones

Artist: Chuck van Zyl 
P: 2019

SpaceTones is the entire concert that Chuck van Zyl did during E-Day 2018. An entire live set improvised by the master of the Berlin School in the United States, A pure listening pleasure. Some minor play faults are always there during concerts but here there are almost none!! The master at work is the message here. Pure Magic!

14,90 EUR
 
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