THE GATELESS GATE - GERMANIA
MP3: Batenimnetlabel BN LP007 12 13 – 2013 - Italy
Die Sprache der Pflanzen (Plant Language) (dedicated to Edgar Froese)
Exosphere (dedicated to Manuel Göttsching)
Roten Himmel (Red Sky) (dedicated to Klaus Schulze)
Auf Wanderung (On a Journey) (dedicated to Kraftwerk)
Für Florian Fricke (to the memory of Florian Fricke)
All sounds by The Gateless Gate (= Allister Thompson).
The lyrics to “Auf Wanderung” are a poem by Hermann Hesse.
Cover photo is a satellite photo of Berlin.
"Germania" is an EP homage to the sounds of early 1970s German experimental music. The artists referenced include Edgar Froese, Manuel Göttsching, Kraftwerk, Klaus Schulze and Popol Vuh. The recording is meant to be a tribute and a reference back to their trailblazing styles, but not an attempted imitation of their precise sounds. The final track is an affectionate tribute to Popol Vuh’s Florian Fricke, my primary musical influence (with a nod to Popol Vuh guitarist Daniel Fichelscher).” (www.thegatelessgate.net)
"The Gateless Gate is the ambient, psychedelic and experimental project of Allister Thompson, a Canadian former singer-songwriter. After playing in rock bands for many years and touring North America and Europe as a guitarist and bassist, he released a number of online albums of psych folk and progressive rock songs before turning to his interests in (mostly) instrumental music inspired by genres like ambient music, progressive rock and Krautrock, as well as world music. He has released four recordings under the The Gateless Gate name since 2012, "Xinjiang" (on Nostress Netlabel), "Heikan No Setsu", "Remnants". The Gateless Gate's music is intended to be spiritually inspiring and tranquil while still challenging the listener. In 2014 The Gateless Gate will become a duo with the release of a full-length album in collaboration with a pianist. "Germania" is an homage to the sounds of early 1970s german experimental music. The artists referenced include Edgar Froese, Manuel Göttsching, Kraftwerk, Klaus Schulze and Popol Vuh. The recording is meant to be a tribute and a reference back to their trailblazing styles, but not an attempted imitation of their precise sounds. The final track is an affectionate tribute to Popol Vuh’s Florian Fricke, his primary musical influence (with a nod to Popol Vuh guitarist Daniel Fichelscher).” (Batenimnetlabel)
Additonal remarks by Allister Thompson from correspondence (January 2014):
“The little snatch of ‘Song of the Earth’ at the end of the track ‘Für Florian Fricke’ is played with mellotron (cello sound, I think). Not a real mellotron, a software version!
My strong interest in Popol Vuh is probably for two reasons. One, I like ethereal ambient and psychedelic music, but I also really like earthy world and folk music. So musically, most of Popol Vuh's music is positioned perfectly in the middle of my musical taste spectrum. Fricke and his band really managed to create contemplative music without having to resort to too much experimentation with sound (at least after 1971) — it's all in the vibe and the composition. I also really like good choral music, so the later albums (such as ´Agape-Agape´) are also favourites of mine.
Second, on an emotional level I respond to Fricke's spirituality. Clearly his musical goal was to create a new secular form of spiritual music for a new, freer age. The new age may not have come about, but the music did! There's a beautiful intensity to Popol Vuh's music, but a calm and tranquil one at the same time. It works at a deeper level than most people's music, in my opinion. There are other musicians whose work can have the same effect on me, such as Stephan Micus and some other ambient artists.”
From an interview for Headphonaught (2014):
H: Name an artist who has inspired you.
AT: Florian Fricke of Popol Vuh. He made beautiful secular spiritual music that uplifts the soul. I listen to Popol Vuh every few days at least.