Following a largely-fallow 2022, ’23 saw several projects – both new and old – continuing to develop at their own leisurely pace, with one completed and newly-released.

The common (and new) factor in nearly all these projects is that they are longform pieces. I’ve become increasingly attracted to the large minimalist canvas, and the results so far are highly encouraging.

The first of these is the new release (my 11th album), Tears For a Numinous Realm. This was recorded in 2022 but post-production carried over into ’23, and its release date is tomorrow, New Year’s Eve!

Tears features three EBowed guitars (including 12-string and fretless), a bass pulse, and a synth pad for occasional texture. The gods really ruled in my favor on this project, as its writing and recording proved to be the quickest and easiest yet, by far.

Fulfilling another long-held desire, the stunning cover photo is from my dear friend Kati Astraeir, to whom the album is dedicated. Much gratitude, Spirit Sister!

Also released in ’23 was Fragments in the Maze, my second duo with Chris Russell. This was my first album released by a label other than my own Kalindi Music, being on the venerable earthMANTRA netlabel.

New Projects Started in 2023:

1) A minimal longform for eight voices (two each SATB) and Electric Guitar. This is a Classical piece, but may also get an Ambient version (with a different Guitar part).

2) A very chill hour-long reworking of “Exquisite Divination of Patterns” from the album Divinations.

3) Another Classical piece: a church cantata. That’s not a typo (and that’s not the title!). I’m only trying to follow in the footsteps of J.S. Bach, not imitate him. But the Right Subject presented itself, so what can one do?

Continuing Projects:
1) The album Carving in Shadows, mostly finished, has some writing and recording still to be completed.

2) The score for the guitar quartet After the Sun. I’m looking for a brave quartet of guitarists to perform and record this.

Mukunda’s Friends:
I have temporarily withdrawn my devotional project’s three releases, as I’ve discovered some needed improvements. When they’re right, they will be re-released on the eyes cast down Bandcamp page. Look for the drone chantscape Personal Bhajan on auspicious Feb. 29th!

Just in the past few weeks, a Very Unexpected Christmas Project has reared up – we’ll share that on December 1/24 – or sooner, depending on how it’s released and by whom.

Fantasy Projects:
There is no shortage of these! The primary one has long been a groove-driven longform piece, probably made up of many sections. My wife Daci gave me yet another wonderful percussion gift this Christmas: a tongue drum! Something I’ve wanted for a long time, but never felt comfortable investing in.

So this has me thinking that Critical Mass has been reached and I ought to get on with this dream project. I really must finish most of the above first, but I’ll probably start playing around with these…

Daci’s gifts over the years (see photo) go with the drums, shakers, rain sticks, castanets, thunder tube, sticks, claves, tingsha and bowls, with a library of samples (many homemade) powering the Alesis electronic drum pad. So there’s quite a righteous percussion section now. Stay – ahem – tuned…

Happy New Year! and great thanks for all your continued support.