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Chris Conway - Scanning Planet 3
Chris Conway Scanning Planet 3

Arriving At Planet 3
Scanning For Life
Scanning The Sky
The Wind
The City
The Temple
The Canyon
The Desert
The Storm
Departing Planet 3

Chris Conway -
synthesizers, electric 9 string guitar, theremin, low whistle, voice, effects, samples, zither, hammer dulcimer. percussion

Chris Conway Scanning Planet 3 back tray


Chris Conway

A wondrous electronic voyage of exploration.
Spacey, often powerful, but dreamlike including sounds collected from the world around.

Some years ago the guys at the Auricle Music label suggested CC did an electronic album bringing in various influences they knew that they shared with him - Terje Rypdal, and Terry Riley were two examples. The arrival of the theremin in CC's armoury was another catalyst.

Scanning Planet 3 became a gathering of his favourite sounds, both from the instruments, but also including sounds taken from the world around him. The loose theme was exploration of a world (possibly Earth) and recording was something of a voyage of exploration for Chris too, as he was discovering new things and new ways of working.

What the Auricle label said about Scanning Planet 3
"Chris has been promising us a "cosmic" album for some 10+ years, and at long last, here it is in the form of SCANNING PLANET 3, a vast CD-long cosmic opus, with synths, theremin & guitar, lots of electroacoustic elements, melodic yet elusive & thoroughly creative, hints of Terry Riley, The Rain Garden, Terje Rypdal, etc. Chris has "scanned planet 3" i.e. Earth, and come up with a vast cosmic vision, a work that explores new and unexplored territory, and created an album that is unique."

CC is very fond of this epic album. It was a voyage of discovery for him and was a very personal album in the selection of sounds.

Vidna Obmana, Eduard Artemiev, Simon Stockhausen, Terry Riley, Terje Rypdal, Bernard Xolotl, Lydia Kavina, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Wendy Carlos, Robert Rich

Originally released a single track. Sections were created for ease of download and navigation.

The church bells in "The Storm" were recorded from Evington church, Leicestershire.

The childs voice on Scanning For Life was 2 year old Eve Spooner. Other sounds on that track include CC walking down the street, saying a few words to a neighbour, and fumbling for his keys.

CC's fave track -The Storm


Dene Bebbington - Wind & Wire Magazine


Chris Conway
Musicians don't come much more multi-talented than Chris Conway, he's released many different kinds of albums including Jazz, World Music/Fusion, New Age, Songs, and EM; not only that but he's also been a guest musician on many other albums. Scanning Planet 3 is the first of two EM albums, both of which feature the theremin amongst other instruments. The title is a reference to our planet Earth (the third from the sun) and the music seems to be from the perspective of aliens scanning our world.

An album utilising the sound of the theremin can take a bit of getting used to thanks to its weird and somewhat alien "wailing" quality, though this instrument is mainly used in the opening and closing minutes. It should thus come as no surprise that this is not a typical EM or spacemusic work, instead of going for rhythmic/melodic or floating/drifting motifs Chris has gone for a more experimental collage of impressions rendered in sound.

Over the course of the album the sounds change as the scanning of our planet shifts its focus, sometimes the soundscape is filled with effects - often of a distorted nature where the listener may recognise sounds from life and activity. There are some melodic parts too, notably a light and hypnotic melody (possibly played on the dulcimer) about thirteen minutes in that makes one think of good things as subdued wordless vocals provide a faint backdrop.

By the end of the album it feels like the sounds we've heard have run a fair way through the gamut of Earth bound emanations of nature, human voices and transmissions, industrial activity (there's a stretch that has a driving industrial rhythm) and even strife.

Scanning Planet 3 is a good addition to any EM collection, it takes a bit of getting used to but is worth the effort when one looks past the weirder elements.

  (BVI: 5)BVI

Chris Conway works in many genres, going from being a singer-songwriter (with over 10 CDs released), over world music / fusion (playing in several bands such as the Jazz Orient/Re-Orient band, the world music group The Rain Garden and so on) to jazz, electronics and relaxation.

On “Scanning Planet 3”, a journey in one single track of almost one hour, you get airy waves, relaxation, new age and electric guitar. The material is well produced and really does keep the road very well. My personal highlight is the guitar parts that made me remember the better tracks from ex-Police Andy Summers’ solo material.

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