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Michael Stearns is one of the finest musicians and synthesizer wizards to work in the so-called, poorly defined new age music genre (his specialty is ambient music, which was pioneered by Brian Eno), and his music is absolutely a positive asset to any film soundtrack and a credit to the producers of films featuring his work. Having begun his musical career as a rock musician in Los Angeles, California, in the early 1970s, and influenced by progressive rock artists such as Pink Floyd, Stearns started up his own record label in 1977, Continuum Montage, to produce his own works and others', and market them at new age outlets around the United States such as bookstores and record stores, recording the amazing sounds he produced with profundity on his mighty Serge synthesizer. His first work of note was his lush thematic opus "Ancient Leaves" (1977), and many more followed on inexpensive but digitally mastered high-output cassette tapes until the advent of CDs in the early 1980s. By far the most compelling and brilliant of his early musical works is the masterful, awe-inspiring opus "Planetary Unfolding" (1981), which is the soundtrack for a nonexistent stream-of-consciousness imaginary movie voyage through space. One hears echoes of science fiction classics such as Louis Barron's and Bebe Barron's marvelous tonalities heard on the score of Forbidden Planet (1956) and Bernard Herrmann's dramatic invasion thesis, The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951), interwoven as vibratory patterns in his works like this showing a subtle influence into his creative genius. Stearns broke new ground as an avant-garde performance artist as well with his expansive, futuristic album "Lyra Sound Constellation" (1983), which used George Landry's musical instrument of the title as his vehicle for new musical expressions. In 1984, Stearns signed with a new record label, Sonic Atmospheres, quietly closed down his indie label, and released his first major film soundtrack for Ron Fricke's IMAX presentation Chronos (1985). Since these auspicious beginnings, Stearns has distinguished himself among his peers such as Tangerine Dream, Vangelis and Kitaro for continually pushing the envelope and expanding the public consciousness to show what music is and can be, to the infinity of the universe.
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