»Essence« is an acoustic guitar album. Reduced guitar sounds with a subtle atmospheric mood touch the fringe of music with a breathing sonic experience.
1.the decision of the difference 4:19, 2.dust bowl 3:18, 3.food for thoughts 6:14, 4.the world as a canvas 3:50, 5.between reality and dream 4:16, 6.turbulences 2:40, 7.subterranean river 3:24, 8.enigmatic 3:54, 9.uncomplaining patience 4:12, 10.excavation at the heart 3:26, 11.overwhelming sights 4:20, 12.instinct 5:43, 13.clarity 2:48, 14.fleetingness of time 3:15, 15.the malice 3:46, 16.cozy strangeness 3:14, 17.the luxury of contentedness 3:56;
Recorded and mixed in 2015 in the studio of Roman Leykam.
Mastered 2016 in the studio of Frank Meyer.
Produced and performed by Roman Leykam.
Photos by Roman Leykam, Artworks by Frank Meyer and Roman Leykam.
6-sided DigiPak, 8-pages booklet
Roman Leykam: steel stringed Line 6 Variax 700 acoustic guitar.
... Roman Leykam plays the guitar in a fantasy world where he feels alone and miles away from the world we’re living in ...
SIDE-LINE / Inferno Sound Diaries 1/2018.
... Roman Leykam likes to play and experiment with guitar. "Essence" has been composed with acoustic guitar. The artist reveals (once again) himself as an experimentalist creating a sort of abstract sound, which also becomes pretty atmospheric. "Essence" is a weird trip featuring 17 tracks.
+ + + : Roman Leykam clearly is an artist like no other. This man gives you the impression to live and compose on another music planet. He’s not the only artist dealing with this kind of abstract music, but it always remains something particular and clearly different. I like the atmospheric side of his work, which could be a great match with a visual artwork. It sounds like his transforming images into music. It also feels a bit like an imaginary world of isolation. Notice by the way the album has been delivered in a beautiful and somewhat hypnotic digipak format.
– – – : "Essence" sounds experimental and therefore not exactly the kind of work, which is easy to listen to. I think it needs a visual accompaniment creating a kind of 'total concept' while the music on its own feels hard to catch.
Conclusion: Roman Leykam plays the guitar in a fantasy world where he feels alone and miles away from the world we’re living in. It could be a kind of meditation, but definitely a music universe of loneliness. I’m sure it might be pretty intriguing for a selected number of listeners.
Best songs: "Uncomplaining Patience", "Subterranean River".
... He keeps on focusing on the painstaking forging of aural settings for meditation, but he preferred to squeeze an acoustic guitar for this lofty target ...
chaindlk.com / Vito Camarretta 9/2017.
We already introduced some of the outputs of Roman Leykam's musical incontinency. The most recent we talked about is maybe "Impressions", a very good one for listener's meditation. There was also a track titled "Essence" in its list, but it has nothing to do with the sound that he explores on this album, likewise titled "Essence". ... He didn't squeeze an instrument he found in a pawnshop, but he chose a Line6 Variax 700, one of the aesthetically ugliest guitar, but one of the best in producing some particular kind of sonorities in my opinion. Roman seems to know this acoustic jewel and its mods very well, so that he turns the instrument into something closer to Japanese shamisen, Indian sitar (tracks like "Subterranean River" or "Instinct" are the ones where the Line6 resembles this instrument) and a set of classic legendary guitar like the D'Angelico New Yorker, the Selmer Maccaferri or the National Reso-Phonic Style "O" - some of the instruments that inspired the mods of Line6 Variax 700 -. Roman often switches over different mods in the longer-lasting of the seventeen improvisations he packed in "Essence" (such as "Food for Thoughts" or "Uncomplaining Patience"), but all of them are mainly based on slowly picked chords (strumming is really rare on this album), that highlights Roman's interesting handling of effects.
... a breathing musical experience for your imagination. 17 titles which create an impressive lasting effect. Also by the acoustic guitar which is charged with emotions. digitale Jazz-Zeitung 8/2017
... I already got several releases of Roman Leykam and up to now my sentence was always the same: Good musician but the music doesn't touch me at all. I won't revise this but to be honest, this record is even a bit more interesting to me. ...
club|debil - Dresden Industrial Underground Collective 8/2017.
Though still very jazzy (and no, I'm surely no fan of Jazz), the sound is very reduced, because Leykam concentrates on his acoustic guitar and some effects. I'm not sure, if he*s working with layers or playing just his instrument, effecting the guitar sounds live. I guess the latter one. So it's the typical kind of a gifted musician, playing his tunes from abstract to organic. As said above; I can appreciate that, but it will never blow me off. It's Leykams personal journey to his world of sounds, but not my trip.