Each month we shine the spotlight on one SoundGym member by reviewing one of their tracks for our Music Spot feature. This month we focus on `Cambrian Explosion` by @Michael Southard, AKA Time Rival.
Southard is based in Richmond, Illinois, and Time Rival is his ambient project. He wants his music to `cure road rage, help you sleep, and evoke your deepest emotions`.
He has been making music for twenty years, but until the birth of his first child, it had only ever really been a hobby. His outlook shifted drastically when he looked into his son's eyes for the first time and realized that he had to be a positive role model.
What better way to do that, he thought, than to follow his long term dream, and try to carve out a career as a musician.
Southard`s decision is to the benefit of all of us – as we can all now lose ourselves in Time Rival`s eerie, atmospheric world. `Cambrian Explosion` is simple, sparse and yet incredibly evocative.
There are synthwave influences here as well as the more obvious ambient inspirations, and the Vangelis-like synth tones invoke shadowy, futuristic landscapes.
This track is a lesson in how much can be achieved with relatively little, providing each element is selected with care and precision.
If you want to hear more of Southard`s work, a good place to start is his Bandcamp
page. You can also check him out on Twitter