This is a release which is pretty close to me, as I spent an absolutely beautiful few days out in this exact spot last summer, exploring the surrounding areas of The Columbia River Gorge, Washington. Some of the views from around the Gorge are spectacular, and genuinely breathtaking (you can see some of my photos here). Needless to say, it gives me great pleasure to be able to share the story of a place which is close to me as well as the artist.
For those that follow ASIP regularly, you’ll know I’ve long been a fan of Sage Taylor and we’ve been lucky enough to host an isolatedmix from him too – a stunning blend of classic ambient and electronica which spanned his varied tastes and inspirations. From this, and indeed his many albums and EP’s spanning some of our favourite labels (Energostatic, Basic Sounds and Cold Tear) it’s evident that Sage is one of only a few producers who can consistently perfect that slender line between a beautiful melodic piece and driving, progressive dub-techno music. For this release, Sage has decided to focus on his ambient side to ensure the atmosphere and beauty of overlooking such an epic landscape is distilled within an engrossing and calming piece of music.
“We’ve all stared into the abyss at some point in our lives – whether it’s figuratively in pondering life’s bigger questions, or literally, teetering on the precipice, peering over into gravity’s dead space – it typically provides a fresh perspective and a vast reminder of our place in the world. They’re some of the thoughts Sage Taylor considers as he stares out across Columbia River Gorge, absorbing the stars and size before him.
“When you’re from a city like I am, you’re immediately struck by the vastness of the place but at the same time, the view is so picturesque it seems almost unreal,” he muses.
‘Vantage Points’ captures that quiet contemplation and doesn’t just emanate tranquillity; it breathes it, exhaling with every whip of the night breeze and distant gurgle of the water below. There’s also a sense of relief and release, the stresses of a city life melting into the expanse, eased by the serenity but energised by the scale of the thoughts and things bigger than our own comprehension.
“This song is an amalgamation of how I feel when I’m standing on the balcony of a viewpoint along the Columbia River Highway, absorbing the huge, sparse-yet-beautiful spectacle first-hand. The feeling is twice as intense at night and when the sky is clear, it’s sort of a reminder just how small I am every time I do it.”
(Place introduction by Reef Younis)