True to the Times (How to Be?)
David Hykes, voice, windharp, organ, keyboard; Peter Biffin, dobro; Bruno Caillat, zarb, daff; Tony Lewis, tabla
"True to the Times (How to Be?)" develops further the current phase of Harmonic Chant work (since 1991), which began with the album "Windhorse Riders". My aim now is to show Harmonic Chant as a unified field joining chant, mode, text and rhythm.
The double focus of this album is on harmonic polyrhythms (just-intonation transposed into the realm of rhythm), and singing harmonic songs. The trio format is very inspiring, and, with collaborators like Peter Biffin and Bruno Caillat, seems to hold few limits.
"True to the Times (How to Be?)". These times ask us to share a responsibility for which little data of a spiritual nature in our civilization has survived to prepare us. We are cut off from that level of harmony which, were we able to attune to it, might illuminate and guide us, with quite different results than those which we are now having to face.
We don't see how to be. To see our whole world, we need a stable point of view toward all which is moving...turning, seasons, time. How to be? This windy life. What is behind all this movement? How to be? This is the drift of the title. The only way I can see of being true to the times is in trying to be true to deep self-questioning each day. Like an enigma which only deeper and deeper contemplation -- more and more real living -- can answer, or at least keep alive. Contemplation, being, reflection, pondering -- few of the inner endangered species in the inner nature of Man.
Thinking it all over again, I would say that for me, today, the purpose of music still seems to be to help us find harmony within ourselves. In that effort we can hear differently the question of how to be face it more globally, and even, at some moments, find an eventual source of reply. The seeking is itself a kind of pilgrimage. My image of the pilgrim, who could at some moments be any one of us, is of someone constantly working...lost in work. One spark of that energy and the pilgrim can go on for days... or eventually forever, like the real Ones. Not just up and down, or back and forth, but ever onward.
--David Hykes, first day of Spring, 1993
Available here: iTunes
New Albion Records, Inc.