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Hiro Kawahara and Peter Frohmader

by Hiro Kawahara and Peter Frohmader

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Sphinx Touch 13:11
The Earth 15:34
9-13 06:13


Dedicated to the late Peter Frohmader.

I liked Peter's first solo work, 'Musik Aus Dem Schattenreich (1979)' I also liked some of his other works, so if the opportunity arose, I hoped to collaborate with him.

In 1997, the Internet was not yet widespread, so my first contact (November 1997) was by letter, and after that we used FAX.

When I first contacted him, I also sent him my CDs, and he liked them, so this collaboration was decided. At that time he had just finished his collaboration work with Richard Pinhas, Fossil Culture.

At that time, he didn't use Apple computers yet, he was making music with Atari computer and ADAT multi-track recorder. As for our collaboration method, I used the basic tracks from his CDRs that he sent to me.

I copied each track to an analog 16track tape machine, then over-dubbed my guitar and synthesizer sounds on another track, and mixed down in my studio.

'Sphinx Touch' had already been recorded separately on his side and was planned to be released as a Book+DVD, but he sent me another version of this basic track. We can find his version on 'Compilation I 1988-2007 (DVD)' or 'V.A. - Music From The Edge Vol 04 (2001)' also found on Youtube:

The drummer is unknown to me because they were not specified in the package he sent.

His feedback about the rough mix of some tracks on the original 1998 version: 'I really like this version - will be a strong CD, I think.'

After that, I was looking for record company to release this CD, but due to my work and my family, I moved from Kyoto to Tokyo in 1999. After that, I was so overwhelmed with work that my musical activities practically stopped.

It was last year (2022) when I finally got away from work and had some free time. In the meantime, I completely forgot about Heretic's music and our collaboration work......

From repeated e-mail conversations with enthusiastic fan in Eastern Europe, last year (2022) I began to remaster all of my past music, and took time to complete the remastering of all works.

Among them was this collaboration with Peter, so when I tried to contact him last year (after 24 years), I was stunned to learn that he died suddenly on May 2, 2022.

Of course he didn't get listen to this 2022 remaster version, so for me, it's a very great pity.

Unlike the remastered version, the original version (1998) I sent to him was not processed with compression. Although the dynamic range is wide, but the entire volume balance is uneven. Mastering was impossible at that time on my side.

Although I never met him in person, I would like to dedicate these works to him in mourning for his death

(1) At the end of 2022, I made remixes of several past materials of me and Peter as a memorial to him.
Also, as sound processing, I used 3D processing software made in Japan, so please listen to this song with headphones. By doing so, synthesizer sounds swirl around your head, and my analog synthesizer sound with sequencer (1982 recording) will be located in the center.

I designed it assuming the feeling of entering a world of nothingness. Please refer to this album cover as my image of this. This remixed version uses sounds mixed in different countries and at different times. I deliberately chose the same title as my first LP (OSIRIS - In the mist of Time 1980), with the meaning that the recording date and time and the recording place are mixed.

(2) I am proud of the overall sound engineering design of my guitar and the special effects that I overdubbed here. I feel that I achieved the pinnacle of the music that I was aiming for. All my guitars use the ZOOM 9150 amp simulator, and I play in a variety of styles in each sections. Mellotron was played with a MIDI module called Vintage Keys Plus and the synthesizer's sound effect are from a Korg M3R.

You can listen / feel the ultra bass sound only through good speakers or with headphones. If possible, I recommend to listen it as loud as possible on B&W (Bowers & Wilkins) products. I am pleased that I feel that this track is very impressive not only for the performance but also in terms of audio itself.

(3) The reverb sound of my guitar in the first part of this track should be heard outside the speakers if played through the speakers as the sound location. I used 3D hardware processing for this guitar sound, the natural tone guitar sound was added with reverb in the mix-down in 1998. Before returning to the mixer, it was passed through a 3D processor called 'Berringer/EDISON EX1' (tape guitar track)->reverb->EX1->mixer).

Thanks to this processor, the location of the sound has expanded significantly beyond left and right. Currently, this processor has been discontinued, and the used price for it is very inexpensive.

The sound route I used (Sound-->Reverb-->EX1) allowed me to get a great 3D effect. I used 2 amp simulators (SansAmp PSA-1 and ZOOM 9150) in first half and second half of my guitar. My guitar playing in the first half is a homage to Terje Rypdal's ECM label work.

(4) Basically, this track was recorded by Peter Fromader alone. In my remix, I remixed a sequencer samples and focused on sound processing. If you listen to it using speakers, the super bass should resonate your body!

(5) The meanin of '9-13' is the voicing interval of my guitar against with the root note. I think this kind of sound selection is more like a jazz voicing. The voicing of (2) is also the same.

In my 1998 recordings and the mixes I made on 2)-5), my 3D processor (Berringer/EDISON EX1) was able to only extend the location of the sound outside the speakers, but perfect 3D sound was not possible at that time.

As for (1), the software's and CPU's evolution has made it possible for individuals to design stereophonic sound. However, the control of the vertical (altitude) position cannot be recognized with general-purpose headphones, so unfortunately, I think that (1) represents the limit of 3D sound that can be created at the moment.

Hiro Kawahara 2023


released August 25, 2023

Hiro Kawahara and Peter Frohmader (1998: Remaster 2022)

1 In The Mist Of Time (2022 3D Remix) (16:33)
2 Sphinx Touch (13:11)
3 Virtual Nature (6:58)
4 The Earth (15:34)
5 9-13 (6:13)

(Total time 58:31)


Peter Frohmader (bass, synthesizer)
Hiro Kawahara (guitar, synthesizer, sound effect and 3D processing)

1) composed and remixed by Hiro Kawahara
2-5) composed by Peter Frohmader 1998
2-5) overdubbed by Hiro Kawahara, 1998 in Kyoto.

Copyright Hiro Kawahara 2023


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Cuneiform Records Washington, D.C.

Cuneiform Records is an independent record label releasing adventurous, boundary-bursting music by artists from around the world.

Founded in 1984.
Based in Washington D.C.

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