Under the handles Panabrite and Jürgen Müller, Seattle synthesizer maestro Norm Chambers issued a prodigious amount of music on several small labels around the world, all of it imbued with tonal, melodic, and rhythmic ingenuity that should release endorphins even in ambient-music skeptics. Now operating under his own name, Chambers continues to maintain lofty quality control with his newest full-length cassette, Idea Region. It's another in a long line of releases that display the analog-synth musician's keen ear for sublime textures and cosmic atmospheres. Idea Region radiates a liturgical stateliness while also favoring drippy, aquatic tones that make you feel as if you're listening to these tracks in a leaky, centuries-old church.
"Bells for Jun" is rather bustling for a Chambers composition, its titular bells tintinnabulating somewhere between Mike Oldfield's Exorcist-enhancing Tubular Bells and an insistent Javanese gamelan pulsation. All of this salubrious crystalline activity sparkles above a lustrous orange-yellow drone augmented by faint, watery undertones, adding to the overall sense of well-being.
Speaking of well-being (or the unfortunate lack thereof), Chambers will be performing a benefit concert at Chapel Performance Space on November 8 for the ailing son of fellow Seattle electronic musician Chloe Harris (aka Raica). Tragically, Baby Cameron was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer (Neuroblastoma). All proceeds from this concert will be donated to Harris and her husband's GoFundMe campaign to help with Cam’s medical expenses. If you can’t attend, you can contribute to the fund here.