SACD & Other Hi-Res Reviews

The Lost World – Michael Stearns & Friends – Hearts of Space/ F.I.M.

A soundtrack of audiophile-oriented exotic sounds for an imaginative place in South America.

Published on December 17, 2012

The Lost World – Michael Stearns & Friends – Hearts of Space/ F.I.M.

The Lost World – [Playlist follows] – Michael Stearns & Friends -  Hearts of Space/ First Impression Music audiophile CD LIM DXD 037, 54:33 ****:

In 1994 New Age composer Michael Stearns traveled to the south of Venezuela, to the same area which had been written about in the book The Lost World, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. He created a original album for the Hearts of Space label the next year, inspired by the sights, sounds and stories he experienced. But he didn’t see any dinosaurs, as in Doyle’s book. However, he says some of theexperiences stretched him into the unknown and revealed what he found easier to convey in music than to describe in words. Some sound effects he recorded there are mixed into the dozen tracks of this musical evocation of a “Lost World.”

The variety of exotic sounds on the album made it something of an audiophile favorite, and in 2009 it was remastered as a high-end DXD-mastered CD by First Impression Music. That got it chosen by The Absolute Sound as one of their “10 Super-Sounding CDs for System Calibration.”  The second track here, the “Lost World Theme,” is demo-quality.  “The Last Pterodactyl” harkens to Doyle’s book again, rather than real life. On the track “Volcano” Stearns used some actual on-the-spot sounds of a volcano mixed into the music—not one in Venezuela, but actually in Costa Rica. Various native flutes are heard on the album, including from Venezuela, American Hopi indians, and from Bali. The long single-string instrument known as The Beam is featured on some tracks, and on “Lost World Reprise” a wind harp is heard.  Again, although this disc is playable on standard 44.1K/16bit decks, it does feature an advanced high resolution that I feel qualifies it for inclusion in this section.

TrackList:

1. Kama Meru
2. Lost World Theme
3. Imu Paru
4. Maripak: The Last Pterodactyl
5. Matawi: Killer of Men
6. Sabana
7. Volcano
8. Auyan
9. Warao
10. St. Francis
11. Crystal Canyon
12. Lost World Reprise

—John Sunier




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