Review by Chuck van Zyl:
The premise of Harold Budd's The Room was for this revered artist to at last fully interpret the piece of the same name from 1988's The White Arcades. If each of the 13 pieces on The Room represent a different space, then the passage that connects them is Budd's gentle and easy style. As with much of Budd's work, the music on "The Room" is dreamy, beautiful and introspective but not entirely consoling. The rooms on this album hold fond memories intertwined with melancholic recollections. Present throughout the album is Budd's classic reverberant piano, elegantly supported by well-placed synths and drones. The music is an evocation of experience and emotion. Budd's melodies are the narrative, and from each room one receives a sense of unspoken history.
The piece, "The Room", which I covered from 1988's The White Arcades, has had a haunted-like presence since I abandoned it a dozen years ago. I knew that I had stepped away from it early, but that the greater need then was to release the record I'd been periodically working to complete on and off in Edinburgh for the previous six months.
It was untitled - unusual for me - until I saw Tony Bevan's show at the ICA in London which included his portrait of citric angst: The Room.I had my title - a chance discovery that switches everything into place. Another discovery, ten years later, was accidentally skirting the tiny Piazza San Pancrazio in Florence and glancing over the medieval facade of the Museo Marino Marini. The museum was empty - the space was central: stairs to nowhere, dead end alcoves, clerestory windows that allowed no light . . . The Room opened, in dark.
There are more rooms than pieces. Titles have come and gone, pieces have had a short life, others have appeared from nowhere and still others were worked and re-worked till they finally broke through or were discarded. I miss the ones that have disappeared.
Harold Budd, Los Angeles, May 2000
1 The Room Of Ancillary Dreams
Steel Guitar [Pedal], Crotales [Metal Crotales] – Chas Smith
2 The Room Of Oracles
3 The Room Of Stairs
4 The Room Of Corners
5 The Room Alight
6 The Candied Room
7 The Room Of Mirrors
8 The Room Obscured
9 The Room Of Forgotten Children
10 The Room Of Accidental Geometry
Acoustic Guitar – Terrence Budd
11 The Room Of Secondary Light
12 The Flowered Room
13 The Room