Voyager 1 was a spacecraft and the fastest machine mankind has ever created. Voyager 12 is maybe the best kept secret on the scene. Only now have I discovered Pictures, a short album of short tracks of some of the most beautiful electronic sonnets committed to sound.
The man behind Voyager 12 has released tracks going back at least six years – lithe and florid, you can tell the maker by the craftsmanship – but Pictures reaches a kind of musical apotheosis that everything else he makes will be judged by. With orchestral ambiance and epic flourishes, “Prelude” shows us a producer that has taken in the whole of electronic music history, from the quiet textures of Fripp and Eno to the overwhelming adrenal grandeur of Jean-Michel Jarre. The rest of Pictures brings a kind of synthwave sensibility to tracks that could have been written by Tycho or Com Truise and played at sunrise over arid landscapes.
Voyager distorts time: “Light Speed” feels epic in scope but wraps up the journey in less than 4 minutes. If there’s a criticism, it’s that tracks like “Prelude” and “Lost Memories” do feel too short – they leave us abruptly, right when you’re sinking in the chair, through the floor and downward to the center of the Earth and crashing through every soft layer of sediment along the way. This is an astonishing record, it hasn’t aged since I bought it and fits perfectly between Tycho’s Awake and the albums of some of the more talented *wave protagonists.
Voyager 12: Pictures
1. Voyager 12: Prelude (02:27)
2. Voyager 12: Together (05:42)
3. Voyager 12: When The City Sleeps (03:57)
4. Voyager 12: Light Speed (03:55)
5. Voyager 12: Lost Memories (03:36)
6. Voyager 12: Pictures (04:52)