This music is devastating. Between 1974 and 1977, the late Hungarian-Swedish composer Ákos Rózmann began work on a composition entitled Images of the Dream and Death. On August 26, Editions Mego’s Ideologic Organ imprint will release the fourth and final version of this unplaceable masterpiece (revised at the Stockholm Electroacoustic Music Studio, 2001) as a triple LP. Ákos Rózmann — formally trained at the Bartok School of Music and Liszt Academy — remains one of the most under-celebrated pioneers in electroacoustic music, and the reissue of Images of the Dream and Death is a crucial step in vindicating the singular efforts of this brilliant visionary.
Images of the Dream and Death is an indecipherable narrative of electroacoustic noises depicting an inhuman space-time. It is a desert of horizon-less dream-space, a spectral-procession of soundscapes capable of tarnishing the sanity right from your skull. It’s as if a microphone was dropped somewhere into a lost world, and the music here is the result of the sounds collected by that event: the stirrings of alien wildlife, the noises birthed by the ghostly movements of unimaginable creatures, the terrestrial buzz that would fill a planet inhabited by all the entities depicted in that strangest of books, Codex Seraphinianus.
It’s hard to imagine an item of music more ideally suited for mental escape, more capable of delivering the listener into a state of otherness. This attribute is fantastic, but the measure of Images of the Dream and Death’s capacity to conjure atmospheric portraits up from the depths of non-existence is also brutal and frightening. The textures within these aural images are of such heightened detail that sensations of climate, color, physical depth, and touch become at once unavoidably real in an unshakable way.
Rózmann’s genius demanded a ruthless and persistent excavation of his ideas, an unwavering intensity bordering on self predation. This uncompromising pursuit of his vision drove him to solitude, but it gave us a truly original work of art; a window into a bizarre, gorgeous, and often disturbing surreality. With Images of the Dream and Death, Rózmann showed, if only through audio, that possible worlds do exist, that fantasies can be actualized.
This is an essential, must-have release for fans of experimental electronic music. Preview an excerpt from Images of the Dream and Death below, and preorder it here. These copies will sell out very, very quickly.