Aucourant Records

Home New Releases Catalog News About Us Links Contact Us
CATALOG > Sanctum

Robert Scott Thompson
Total Time: 71:20
Record Label: EMF Media
Catalog Number: EMF 071
UPC: 653727123929
Type: PRO CD-R
Released: 2007


Sanctum marks the 2nd release on EMF Media from composer Robert Scott Thompson. Again working in the field of electroacoustic music - much like his previous EMF CD ‘Acousma’ - Sanctum incorporates a diverse collection of raw sound sources edited, processed, re-synthesized and morphed into nine distinct tracks. Sound sources include crotales, metallics, vocal sounds and violoncello. With Sanctum, Robert Scott Thompson once again displays why he is one of the most highly regarded modern composers today.


Two recordings listed below stand apart from the "Ten Best" list which follows because of how atypical they each are compared to the rest of the releases as well as how each one represents an unparalleled achievement in musical vision as well as an amazingly rich listening experience. I simply couldn't place them into the usual ambient category since their "sound" is so unlike the other albums here.

Like its sonic (not chronological) predecessor, Acousma, Sanctum travels the path of abstract musicality through the sonic manipulation of assorted (and sometimes unexpected) sound sources, leading the adventurous listener to landscapes of startling yet idiosyncratic beauty. It's an album to be savored and experienced in rapt attentive detail.

- Bill Binkleman

As an admirerer of Robert Scott Thompson, one gets used to throwing around words such as "amazing", "stupendous" and "surreal", but with this new CD one tends to search for new words. This electroacoustic work, based on many and varied sound sources (winds, voices, pure electronics, etc), and where even the titles are pure poetry, RST breaks, for me at least, new ground with dramatic and surreal musical beauty. Here, for instance, low-frequency rumblings are more pronounced than on perhaps any RST CD I've heard, which results in a slightly ominous mood at times (but as all horror fans know, ominous moods can be very juicy). The tonal clusters and sculptural sound shifts invites the listener into a world of sublime and sometimes eerie beauty, and I do not hesitate to put this CD amongst RSTs 4-5 best. This is (yes, I know I sound like a parrot) amazing, stupendous and (you guessed it) surreal music, and those not perceptive enough to enjoy it should have their heads examined.

- Ulf Claesson

This release from 2007 features 71 minutes of electro-acoustic music.

Electronic tonalities conspire with orchestral elements to produce moody atmospheric that embody classical and ambient sensibilities.

Haunting textures waft on sedate breezes. Electronic effects include: harnessed feedback, burbling diodes, and manipulated mechanical noises. These aspects surface periodically throughout the songs, only to submerge in a churning orchestral miasma. Actually, the electronics are mostly understated, remaining a subliminal factor in the tunes.

The music's major presence is orchestral. These contributions are generally harmonic, reminiscent of the period when an orchestra is tuning up, before they get to any definite melody. Sawing cellos mutter through cracks in the flow. Pensive woodwinds sigh in the distance or tweet with petulant emphasis. Ranks of violins moan softly, generating a protracted tension.

Percussion doesn't really play a major part in this tuneage, although chimes and bells are featured in an incidental manner, more as punctuations than as rhythms.

These compositions establish a moody ambience tinged with an intellectual air mainly attributable to the orchestral dominance throughout the pieces. This instrumentation tends to walk a fine line between ambient and abstract classic music, but the result is definitely a calming one with an undercurrent of cerebral agitation.
- Sonic Curiosity


The Strong Eye The Strong Eye
Robert Scott Thompson, an acknowledged leader in the field of computer music composition, has produced a the long-form work, THE STRONG EYE, conceived as a ...more
On the Keyboard ~ Piano Works of Joji Yuasa On the Keyboard ~ Piano Works of Joji Yuasa
The first recording of the complete works for solo piano - packaged in a special slip cover case.

Among all the kinds of instruments, I am partic...more
Folio - Volume Two Folio - Volume Two
The Folio series features various miscellaneous compositions that develop out of my general practice. These works are the result of explorations into the modeling of soun...more
Frozen Light Frozen Light
"...powerful mindscapes of great depth and emergent beauty."

Frozen Light
is a new collection of ...more
The Silent Shore The Silent Shore
Considered by many critics to be a "classic" in the modern ambient genre, The Silent Shore has received numerous published accolades. This disc is...more

Stay connected - Click here to sign up for updates.

Related Titles
Ghost Words Ghost Words
GHOST WORDS is a concert suite of electroacoustic music in four movements, originally composed for world premiere presenta...
Acousma (2CD Set) Acousma (2CD Set)
What does ‘acousma’ mean? It refers to a form of auditory hallucination, the sensation of hearing imaginary sounds. Robert Scott Thompson writes, “Sound...
Amorphia Amorphia

Amorphia is a collection of computer music works created in 1995. Each of the works is concerned with the algorithmic definitio...