Mort Garson

Signs of the Zodiac: Pisces

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The 12th and final volume in composer Mort Garson's pioneering electronic opus Signs of the Zodiac celebrates Pisces, the star sign most closely tied to human feeling -- the music is rapturous and perfectly attuned to its subject, by turns dreamy, romantic, and emotional. Effectively anticipating new age music by roughly a decade, Garson and collaborators Paul Beaver and Cyrus Farrar created otherworldly soundscapes rich in mood and portent, but while Signs of the Zodiac is unquestionably one of the most bizarre projects ever initiated by a major American record label, the music never succumbs to kitsch, exploring its cosmic themes with sincerity and genuine curiosity. Most impressive is the sheer reach and breadth of Beaver's electronic palette, which employed then-groundbreaking hardware including the Moog to point the direction of so much music to follow.