4m33s - "Evolution" and "Evolution 2"

Two albums for the price of One

"Evolution" was recorded in July 2003 at Lowgate Studio, 
Lutton, England. All the tracks were played live, some of them 
are first-take. This album covers the early stages of evolution, 
where tiny microbes are just starting to change and develop 
into more complex life-forms

"Evolution 2" follows on from "Evolution" and covers the stages 
from fish and tiny sea creatures up to the point where land
creatures begin to exist. A celebration of the beginnings
of life on this planet.

Tracks ....
1. Inside the Egg 
2. Evolution 
3. Microbes (in 4 parts) 
4. Chaos Theory 
5. Mutations (in 5 parts) 
6. The March of Evolution 

Tracks ....
1. Now We Are Fish  6:28
2. Where Life is (1) 
3. Chaos Evolves 
4. Where Life Is (2)  1:41
5. Cosmic Rays Bombard the Seas 
6. The Presence 
7. Where Life Is (3) 
8. Evolution 2 
9. Where Life Is (4) 
10. That First Step 

Price (post free worldwide) 8.95 

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Sample the tracks

Comments and reviews ....

Describing the first steps of life on planet Earth, these two albums - now packaged together in a handy 
2CD set - are typically conceptual music from 4m33s. John Sherwood does an excellent job of painting 
aural pictures throughout the disc, such as opener Inside The Egg, with its creeping synthesised gurgles 
sounding thoroughly organic. Most of the music on the double album is performed live, first-take, so stark 
sound improvisation is the order of the day, over lush, orchestrated soundscapes, but this also matches 
the theme well. Many tracks are formed around single, droning chords, from which sequences and 
melodies bubble up and swirl around, in typical 4m33s style. After initial ambience and experimentation, 
Chaos Theory and The March of Evolution bring in primitive rhythms, echoing evolution's increasing pace f
rom simple microbes towards recognisible signs of life.

Evolution 2 begins in a similar manner, but with a slightly faster pace and with a little more activity on 
Now We Are Fish. This second album, however, is punctuated by a series of four short ambient interludes 
called Where Life Is (1-4), each of which is desolate and/or spooky, suggestive of the pre-historic period 
in reference on the album. Elsewhere, we revist the more literal, gurgly organic sound on Cosmic Rays 
Bombard the Seas, and pulsating sequences on Evolution 2, the longest and strongest of the rhythmic 
droning pieces. The album concludes on That First Step, a nervous piece with a hesitant beat behind it; 
we leave the record behind on a fittingly descriptive track that keeps the concept as strong as it began.

The two Evolution albums are experimental works, and while only the Where Life Is tracks contain the 
more melodic work that would come to the fore on later 4m33s albums, the dronier pieces will be of 
serious interest to anybody who delights in experimental synth music.

Ross Baker