Five Bliss Machines on the Infinite Stage (78'01") does not court headlines. Here Paul Ellis and his Spacemusic brain reset our idea of what is possible from contemporary Electronic Music. Decidedly different, across the five tracks there is a sense of the future speaking back to the past - without becoming completely mired in it. In places thrillingly alien, then submitting glimmers of clarity this release moves assuredly from shimmering sonic jolts and high wattage surrender, on down to a secret breathless intensity. Combining a refined musical intelligence with deep artistic convictions Five Bliss Machines on the Infinite Stage resolves into a great sounding heady album of ideas. It is energizing and invigorating in an unconventional way, which is how the music is able to so well reach you emotionally. As we listen we feel Ellis' synthetic textures creep into our room and over our skin. With little in the way of rhythm or accepted structure, an extended ambience pervades the space. While demonstrating an impressive melodic agility and tonal variety, its richness of phrasing and sense of fantasy serve to elevate Ellis to that of an unplaceable presence within his music. Yet, this work is obviously his. Hang onto this thread as each realization falters and advances, breathes and discharges - all somewhat touched by the madness of sound. Does Paul Ellis daydream about timbre? Experience delusions of drones? or fantasies of aural encounters? About more than just the world he is inhabiting, Five Bliss Machines on the Infinite Stage is about a realm that he is moving toward. It is an exclusive excursion through the mind of one of our community's most respected practitioners. Please listen carefully as something new, beautiful and honest emerges.
- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 15 December 2022