This week we have our all-female Hypnos compilation, “Echoes of Polyhymnia,” on sale for just $5.99 through March 30th.
Polyhymnia was one of the Muses of Greek myth, specifically the Muse of sacred hymn. Echoes of Polyhymnia compiles music in ambient and related genres composed and recorded exclusively by women. This genre is so male-dominated generally that we had a lot of fun gathering interesting ambient sounds, including some works that have one foot in ambient territory and another foot in one of several different, related genres. It covers styles and flavors as diverse as ambient, drone, glitch, vocal collage, goth and electronica.
Hypnos manager (and artist) Lena Griffin curated this specially-themed compilation which gathers an assortment of ambient & atmospheric sound works from around the world. This project reveals a totally new angle on ambient music, more diverse and wide-ranging than all previous ambient compilations from Hypnos. Ranging from ethereal to dark to pretty to spooky to melodic, we think this album displays a solidly worthwhile musical and soundscape content beyond just the curiosity and “I’ve never seen that before” factor of the theme.
“The nine Muses struck up a lifestirring melody. Polyhymnia, nursingmother of the dance, waved her arms and sketched in the air an image of a soundless voice, speaking with hands and moving eyes in a graphic picture of silence full of meaning.” –The Dionysiaca of Nonnus
“A wonderful compilation from Hypnos, featuring women in ambient music. Highly recommended.” –Scott Raymond, WVKR-FM
“My compliments for /echoes of polyhymnia/, great album!” –Dennis Koepper, Databloem
What ties these ten tracks together is the fact that all of this are by female composers. Some of them operate in the strict Hypnos field of ambient music, such as Kristin Miltner, Margaret Noble, Sara Ayers, Gydja, Amanda Volta (though quite dark there), K. Cornelius (with too much reverb). The exceptions here are made by Stelleria Fennica, whose pieces has some ethereal singing (think Hyperium’ ‘Heavenly Voices’ series), the marimba and glockenspiel minimalism of Clarissa Barba and the treated piano of Rose Bolton. Lena Griffin’s piece for heavily treated viola might pass on as true Hypnos music too, but its so dark that it falls outside the well-known paths too. These four tracks make the difference here, but throughout it was a most enjoyable compilation, with many interesting names to watch out for.” –Frans DeWaard, Vital Weekly