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24.09.08 - on release of Amenti .



Q: Can you give us a bit of general information about yourself and your musical background.  
Well, to begin with I am an ordinary man, like all of you. I have my own life, enriched with all kind of emotions and doings. Life looks quite simple and complex at the same time, but I think I find myself on the right path – to live and work with music. Most of the time, I am working over my stuff or any client’s material in my studio – AMA Sound (online studio for mixing and mastering music)(, which I officially opened 1.5 year ago. I have a solid musical background, which has come from long studying here in Bulgaria. I have a bachelor degree in music – New Bulgarian University, by subject "Computer Systems & Technology in the branch of Music" and I have a master degree in the same university, by subject “Sound-engineer”. In the music scene I am known with the pseudonym Sleepwalker and I am composing generally in the New Age/World genre, but I have great appetites for film music and symphonic soundtracks. Since 2003 I have officially released 2 solo albums and a single. Since 2005 I am an official member of ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors & Publishers). My basic instrument is Native American flute.
  Q:  What’s the story behind the new album ‘Amenti’?  
Amenti is my latest official release, which is the result of 2 years of hard work. The music inside is a tender blend of low and high acoustic guitar lines with soaring wordless vocals moving in and out of the background, noble tones of Native American flutes and innovative combo of bongos, djembe, doumbek and timbal that fits nicely in the New Age, World & Ethnic genres. The main concept for the album comes from the story about “Halls of Amenti”, a place which exists only in the world of Atlantis. It is said that Egypt is the inheritor of Atlantis’s civilization. So, I like the name, it has good sonority.
Q:  How would you say that your music has progressed since Flower Of Life?
  I feel the new album is more advanced and developed. The orchestration and compositions are more complex. This actually is a continuation of my previous album “Flower Of Life”, because it is said that “Flower Of Life” is decorated in the “Halls of Amenti”. The difference with my past works is huge, as I had 2 years to create my compositions, to find the proper musicians and instruments that I wanted to blend with my music. More than 60% of the music this time was recorded with real instruments, not samples. I wanted to replace as much as I could with real instruments, which required a lot of time and organization. As the height of perfection the album is mastered by the Grammy award-winning engineer Bob Katz, Digital Domain Studio, USA. It’s really nice to see the progress, it’s a normal step which is a reflection of our own development as humans.
  Q:  What influenced you to write music in the style that you have adopted?  

There are many artists and bands that reflect on my own sound, but I can distinguish a few of them as most important – Enigma, Jens Gad, Deep Forest, Afro Celts, Lesiem & Douglas Spotted Eagle. In addition I can point as well to some Soundtrack music composers, whose music influenced me – Hans Zimmer, Klaus Badelt & Howard Shore.

Q:  How do you go about making your music?

  If we accept that the man is born with his talent, I can say that in my case it came suddenly. I was 16 years old and found a music computer program. I was enchanted and so began my journey into the world of creating music.

5.1 Where do you start?
It’s different every time. The main point is the melody. I do not follow any structure or template. It’s just like notes comes out from my head and I am putting them into composition.

5.2 How do you develop a piece?
Once I have the melody I design easily the composition with inclusion of recorded instruments and vocals.

5.3 How do you decide when a piece is complete?
Good question! Well perhaps in the moment, when I start to feel that the harmony becomes too loaded with lines and there is a chance to destroy the piece. It’s never agood approach to throw all ideas into one song, because there is a big chance of breaking it.
  Q:  Where did you find the collaborators that worked with you on Amenti?   I am always searching for talented instrumentalists. In this case the answer is just hard effort in looking for musicians around.
Q:  Can you tell us a bit about your graphics, the album and website have a powerful visual impact.  
The album art cover took 4 months to develop. I have worked closely with one of the finest designers in Bulgaria and I am glad he succeeded to expose my vision in artistic pictures. The website is also the result of closely hard working with a web design team here in Bulgaria. It’s never hard to find quality people to create your imagination, it’s hard to find the right people for that. I am glad I found them.
  Q:  How involved are you with the imagery?  
Well, a lot maybe. When I do compose music, I feel like I am living in own word. Everything that is ancient and mystic involves me completely as a human and this reflects on my music. The world is full of inspiration, you just have to look for it.
Q:  How do you feel about the album now that it is complete?   I feel great, full of energy for the upcoming album. I feel like I can develop more and more. There is nothing better than a new album.
  Q:  What is the musical scene like currently in Bulgaria?  

Well, currently there are a lot of new artists and bands, that follow their own path. Our country was always rich with musicians. Still everyone knows our root folklore music, which even Peter Gabriel used in his music.

Q:  What musical plans do you have for the future?

  Well certainly five or ten years ago, I was at the beginning level and I had only dreams, for which I knew that I have to work hard and don’t give up ahead of trammels, lack of knowledge and hindrances. I had a lot of things to overcome, but I have always lead from my heart and my wish to make spiritual & atmospheric music. After five or ten years, I find myself still composing music and hopefuly it will reach many more listeners around the world. The music is cosmic and I hope to contribute even a little bit for its eternity.

Thanks to Lyubomir Yordanov a.k.a. Sleepwalker for allowing us that interview.