Mystical Sun

Richard Plom aka Mystical Sun makes a panoramic, celestial brand of psy-ambient and his distinctive tracks like the exquisite "Nebulous Mist" have graced many chillout compilations released since the mid-1990's. His own albums are few in number - a yawning 12 year gap separates his first and second albums, for example - but most of them are masterful.

artist:
Mystical Sun

country of origin:
USA

style(s):
Environmental, psyambient, ambient dub, new age, ethno-ambient, progressive rock

decades active:
90's - 10's 

essential releases:

  • Deeper Worlds (2006, Cyberset Music)
  • Energy Mind Consciousness (2008, Cyberset Music)
  • 26000 (2012, Earthdance Music)

Reviewed by Mike G

San Francisco musician Richard Plom aka Mystical Sun makes a panoramic, celestial brand of psy-ambient and his distinctive tracks like the exquisite "Nebulous Mist" have graced many chillout compilations released since the mid-1990's. His own albums are few in number - a yawning 12 year gap separates his first and second albums, for example - but most of them are masterful.

His second album Deeperworlds (2006) is his masterpiece. It comes in two main styles: big spacious ambient dub, breaks and muted doof on the one hand, and beatless sound collages infused with Zen-like calm on the other. The music full of glistening textures yet has a rounded, soft production sheen and it's a testament to the treading the e-music road less traveled, ie. finding and creating original live sounds and samples. Among the rhythmic tracks "Halo" is outstanding in the way it layers 3 or 4 melody lines at once, adding loads of tiny details like jangling zither and choral vocals. "Cloudbursting" is another gem, a rousing tune led by an electric guitar arpeggio and a groove that sounds a bit like 90's big beat gone psychedelic. The gentlest moments are nearly all in the album's last third. These tracks are highly visual ambient pieces, often with environmental effects and blessed with an exotic, pristine "lost paradise" kind of beauty in the vein of UK duo Ishq and the best new age artists.

Two mother Mystical Sun albums are also essential listening. Energy Mind Consciousness (2008) is more subdued, even dark ambient at times and its layers reveal themselves beautifully with repeated listens. 26000 (2012) is beat-orientated in the style of the more energetic tracks on Deeperworlds. Again, Plom's efforts to create original samples and sounds pays off; it's melodic psychedelic downtempo with his own very personal signature.

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