Llanymynech, Wales



Behind the Music

One of the chapters in the book that really stuck out to me was ‘The Next Frontier.’ This chapter perfectly captured a microcosm of the wider issues regarding the environment, and how insensitively large corporations will treat it in the name of financial gain. As an artist, I connected with the feelings of desperation and helplessness that accompany seeing injustice and trying to prevent it, only for efforts to be rendered futile. Yet I was inspired by the unrelenting hope of the volunteers and activists depicted in this chapter. It gave me a much needed reminder that change is possible.

Reading The Outlaw Ocean is a reminder of the power of words and stories. Much like the written word, music also has the fortitude to evoke an emotional response that taps into a memory, forges associations and reinforces what we may have forgotten. 

I invited my friend and musician David Harrison (Super-Frog Save Tokyo) to lend his modular-synth wizardry in the creation of my tracks to help give my music an extra edge that reflected the subject material. After spending a week holed up in my studio in Wales — immersed in the words and sounds of The Outlaw Ocean — we re-emerged with four tracks that weave a tapestry of sobriety and hope. It was one of the most intense weeks spent in the studio of my career.

About Solarstone

From scene founding father, to ringleader and flag-bearer of the Pure Trance movement, Solarstone — producer, composer and DJ Richard Mowatt — has an enduring influence that stretches back almost as far as the genre itself. Releases like “Solarcoaster,” “The Calling” and “Seven Cities” are all benchmark classics of their pre-millennial period. The latter track – among the first of the Balearic trance anthems – has been re-released three times, and now sold in excess of half a million copies. Remixed by Armin van Buuren amongst others, its instantly recognizable sunset/sunrise-sound legacy is still heard in tracks today. With the albums “Anthology One,” “RainStarsEternal,” “Touchstone,” “Pure” and most recently the cryptically titled “. - - - -”, he has also released a quintet of critically revered longplayers. Having championed trance’s true nature from his very first release, the last five years have seen Solarstone push its origin sound – almost singlehandedly – back to the top of the genre’s agenda. Through his gospel of #PureTrance – modernizing the genre’s heart, whilst ring-fencing its soul he caught the disposition of the scene with zeitgeist timing. Within its first year, Solarstone’s ideology of Pure Trance had developed into a bona fide musical movement. It’s one which has been captured by a major mix-compilation series, worldwide Pure Trance club and festival shows, the Pure Trance and Pure Progressive record labels and its weekly radio show.

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

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