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ICON - An Electronic Music Album

Auricle AMCDR 234  59'36"  CD-R £7.00 + p&p

1. Julia  8'32"
2. The F'tang Element  6'20"
3. Valles Marineris  13'11"
4. Iconoclast  2'05"
5. Lucky For Some  10'25"
6. On The Wings Of The Condor  8'54"
7. Morning Mood  10'06"

Composed, produced & engineered by Kevin O'Neill.
Recorded in 1983 on home 2-track, and at Hollow Sun Studio, Cardiff.
Issued under agreement with Kevin O'Neill.
Originally issued in 1984 on self-released cassette, catalogue number K.T. 01.

Authentic reissue of the debut by Welsh synthesist Kevin O'Neill mastered from the original private release cassette, out of print for some 25 odd years.


Kevin O'Neill: synthesizers: Roland SH101, Yamaha DX9, Juno 6, ARP 2600, sequencer/composers: TR 606, TB 303, effects: phaser, flanger, echo, reverb.

The music contained on ICON is surprisingly sophisticated and professional with a wealth of ideas that it's sometimes hard to believe it's a debut album! It's obvious from first hearing it that a thoughtful and competent composer with strong individualistic inclinations who knows what he wants his music to sound like, is at work. Kevin successfully avoids the pitfalls of copyist techniques (no Schulze clone here!) and the cliché-ridden interminable sequences and drum machine patterns, so often a cover-up for lack of originality are thankfully absent. It's hard to single out particular tracks for all are notable in their own right, ranging from the hauntingly melodic and bittersweet Julia to the rather weird percussive The F'tang Element. There are the stark other-worldly soundscapes of Valles Marineris (inspired by the "sandstorm-swept landscape of the great rift valley on Mars named after the Mariner probe of the seventies" - Kevin's words), and the splendour of the evocative On the Wings of the Condor which I am wont to describe as a Tone Poem for synthesizers.

from a review by Peter Harrison in Audion #2 from 1986

In light of the above (and a review in Mirage magazine) we ordered this and stocked all Kevin's output via Audion Distribution until cassette sales dwindled in the early 1990s. In and out of touch since, if it weren't for connecting via Facebook these reissues would never have happened. Kevin was reluctant at first, as he feels these early works are not up to the standard of his later stuff. Yet it's the original fresh approach (as described by Greg) that sets this aside from his later releases, which far outweighs and technical or musical proficiency IMHO (Alan Freeman).

on YouTube...
Lucky For Some (extract)

First edition of 20 numbered copies - released 3/1/2017.

Auricle on Discogs
Kevin O'Neill on Discogs

CD-R release
cover graphics

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