Orlando Kimber & John Keliehor – East Meets West

Wow, an 80’s library record that doesn’t sound like it belongs in a corporate training video for IBM! Unfortunately these types are few and far between, but thankfully for fans of floating synths and electronics, this one delivers. The first side mainly consists of gamelan jams that (for the most part) do a good job of not sounding like they were just trying to cash in on the typical “Far East” sound. The standout track is “King Rama” — layers upon layers of percussion, bells, drums, etc. These guys even do a good Steve Reich impression on “One Language”, a track that reminds me a bit of Reich’s Music for Mallet Instruments.

The b-side is where it gets really interesting. This is where the dudes truly start to bring out their inner new age. “Mongolian Desert” is built around a few isolated gong/chime sounds while droning synths and electronic effects come and go throughout the entire track. “Cloud Music” and “Heavenly Clouds” are my favorites on the entire record; they’re sort of companion pieces I guess you could say, the former with slightly more electronic effects but both very minimal and spacious, basically the complete opposite of what you would think when you hear “80’s library”.

Apparently John Keliehor is selling this as a CD nowadays. Check out his website for more information on this recording.

Cloud Music

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