A musical representation of all 8 planets of our solar system: it’s a popular, ambitious and daunting project. It isn’t pulled off frequently, but when it happens, there’s two classic archetypes to consider. There’s Gustav Holst, who painted the planets from his imagination and their role in folklore and tradition. Then, there’s the NASA Voyager Recordings, a scientific but no less poetic picture of the spheres. Macedonian one-man act Sferi‘s Sound of the Spheres is sometimes inspired by space radiation, and other times by the more traditional, anthropomorphic representations of the planets. And plenty of times it’s a carefully crafted bit of both.
Merkur is such a mixture, starting off with a phaser effect that resembles Mercury’s fast revolution. When the electronics kick in, there’s strange transmissions bouncing off its iron core. A strikingly musical impression that still sounds very much based on Mercury’s natural occurence.
Venera. Earth’s evil twin is a gem in the sky, and for ages it shone in tales of beauty and love. Only recently have those stories been overcast by knowledge of the planet’s “tragic” faith. The string sound and glockenspiel theme capture that melancholy of Venus’ beauty gone warped. One of the highlights of the album.
Neptun, the last great gas giant, is not so different. Again, synth sounds flow slowly like the singing bowls of NASA, but do so in an organized manner throughout the track. A bell sound determines the rhythm along which eery synths are modulated. Imagine the odd hexagon shape discovered on the planets south pole, and you’re in for a scary ride.
The scariest bit, though, is the scale of the real thing. Even probes and data sheets and telescopes as big as your average Trans-Neptunian Object, only just unveil faint dots and digitally colored bitmaps. It’s our imagination that ultimately brings them closer to home. Have a listen, and maybe Sferi’s imagery will make you peek at the still-mysterious grainy deep space, or the hi-res version of it.
A free download, with liner notes, on Bandcamp.