Winter Embrace (15th Anniversary Edition)

by Altus

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rikm
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rikm A beautiful, magical album inspired by the winter months.

Reflective and peaceful, Winter Embrace is a perfect soundtrack for the season.
Gabriele D'Alessandro
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Gabriele D'Alessandro I recently met this composer, I am amazed at how much musical skill he possesses ... it is not for all musicians to have endless horizons open before his eyes and turn them into music that takes you ..... my most sincere congratulations , of course I will collect them all.......
The Winter Embrace......Fantastic......💞
Tryphon
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Tryphon Exquisite and mesmerizing! Beautifully recrafted.
Will make you love winter forever.
Amazing piece of work. Without question, the best album of the year.
Brian Bourassa
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Brian Bourassa Fantastically improved! Didn't think it was possible, but hearing is believing!
Allister Thompson
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Allister Thompson Altus has been supplying our ambient needs for a long time now. This updated version of an older classic softens the sounds and adds more gauzy sophistication but retains its soothing spirituality.
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For many people, winter isn’t an enjoyable time of year. Even I have a love/hate relationship with the season, but when the snow is falling and everything is quiet, it slows the world down to my preferred state. That’s what I’ve been trying to capture in the music over all these years. I’ve explored other aspects of winter, such as in the sombre Black Trees Among Amber Skies (2010), as well as recapturing the magic of the original Winter Embrace in The Sidereal Cycle 3 (2012). But I’ve been told by many long time listeners that the original holds a special place in their heart and mind.

The original version of Winter Embrace was a shorter 25-minute piece, written in early 2002. Later that year, I expanded upon it to produce my first long-play album. Finally, in 2005 (the version that’s been available all this time) I replaced the strings, adding to the emotional impact I strove for.

15 years later, the form and musical structure of Winter Embrace still holds weight to my ears. The five-minute introduction sets the mood. The main theme that follows is a slow-motion minimalist structure, and over the next 25 minutes transforms into an ambient bed of sound. The second half suspends you there, containing reminders of the theme but is never fully realized.

What harms the 2002/2005 recording are the tools I had at my disposal, as well as the limitations of my technical knowledge. Any artist can tell you that we’re always learning something new. I've learned a lot about sound design, and my current toolset offers me a much better set of options than what I had then.

What you hear now is the definitive version of Winter Embrace. Aside from the twinkling bells that permeate the recording, everything you hear has been meticulously rebuilt from the ground up, treated with the utmost respect in terms of keeping the mood intact. To be clear, changes have been made, but if you were to compare, I think you’d agree this version is a vast improvement.

credits

released November 5, 2017

Review at Sonic Immersion:
www.sonicimmersion.org/altus-winter-embrace-15th-anniversary-edition/

The Creation of Winter Embrace: youtu.be/ix0b0hvTP-I
Stream on YouTube: youtu.be/QaY1sljZzHQ
MP3 (320kb/s) available for free at: altusmusic.ca/we_15th.html
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Original composition written in 2002.
Rearrangement and remaster May to August 2017.
Field recordings by daveincamas and lwdickens (freesounds.org)
Photography and design by Mike Carss.
Thanks to Pyracantha.

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Altus Ottawa, Ontario

Ambient music with cinematic overtones

The home to Altus and Loneward

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