Covers shown: LP 1985, CD Germany 1989, CD 1998, LP 2018

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Japan: Strawberry Records SBL-1001
Re-issued on CD in 1989, Germany: Meistersinger Records NGH-CD-343*
Re-issued on CD in 1998, Japan: On-Off/Tokuma Japan TKCB-71492
Re-issued on vinyl in 2018, UK: Sacred Summits SS006

* Album cover photo by Morgan Fisher

1. Gnossienne No. 1 cabaret piano
2. Gymnopedie No. 1 sugar plum piano/ water bell synthesizer
3. Gnossienne No. 3 street corner mouth accordion
4. Gnossienne No. 3 organ ripple synthesizer
5. Gymnopedie No. 1 hesitant piano/ confident lips
6. Gnossienne No. 1 french ice piano/ siberian snow synthesizer
7. Gnossienne No. 1 german haiku melodica
8. Gymnopedie No. 3 family piano/ a hint of la-la-la
9. Gnossienne No. 2 perrier swing synthesizer
10. Gymnopedie No. 2 resonant concert piano/ tide synthesizer
11. Gymnopedie No. 1 festival soft fanfare synthesizer

Bonus tracks on 1999 CD:
12. The Emerald Isle
13. In A Gentle Way
14. Going Nowhere

Erik Satie (1866-1925) is one of Morgan’s favourite composers. A strange, eccentric, surreal man, he was never as acclaimed as the established masters, but influenced not only the likes of Debussy but also many of the Dada artists. On this album Morgan played his music freely after a brief look at the scores. The album was recorded in just three days and features piano, melodica, synthesisers, and Morgan’s favoured tape delay system. Many listeners have commented that this is one of the few interpretations of Satie’s music (as opposed to straight performances) that stays true to the spirit of the composer, unlike various jazz, rock and techno style versions of his music that have been recorded. A truly intimate and joyful journey inside the mind of this unique musical pioneer.

The 1998 CD reissue adds Morgan’s three tracks from "A Slice Of Life" and, like "Flow Overflow" was beautifully remastered and re-packaged in a sleeve featuring a photograph by the renowned American photographer, Regina Deluise. (Note: the name Veetdharm which appears on the LP jacket was given to Morgan by his spiritual teacher at the time). In 2018 Sacred Summits in the UK reissued this album on 180gm vinyl with a screen-printed cover.



Sacred Summits (Luis Perez, Colin Potter) come through with the first-ever vinyl reissue of Morgan Fisher’s 1985 LP. Having played keys in Mott The Hoople and made soundtrack music alongside Yoko Ono and Haruomi Hosono, Fisher became increasingly interested in both New Age music and the proto-minimalism of Erik Satie after his move to Japan in the 1980s. This resulted in Inside Satie, an LP which reimagines the composer’s famed Gymnopedies and Gnossiennes for a mix of electronic and acoustic instruments. Though this reflects a wider trend of reworking classical music for contemporary instrumentation throughout the 70s and 80s, Fisher’s treatments are calmer and more cerebral than, say, Wendy Carlos’s famous reworking of Henry Purcell. The transposition of the first Gymnopedie for ‘(Sugar Plum Piano/Water Bell Synthesizer)’, for instance, is both inspired and inspiring.


8/10 April 2018
Born 1866. Died 1925. Reborn 1985: so states the back cover of the sleeve to this interesting and at times wondrous record. Thus incomparably sweetly-born of Morgan Fisher in the mid-80s, this tribute to the much-loved modernist Eric Alfred Leslie Satie (Erik to his Parisian avant-garde mates) arrives on a new slab of vinyl in a glorious screen-printed sleeve.  What really shines through on this record is Fisher’s admiration and understanding of the elegant, pretty, no-frills melodies his French hero was renowned for and have, of course, been celebrated widely since.

At the time of these recordings Fisher -- whose unique career trajectory thus far had encompassed roles in sixties beat combo Mott The Hoople; film soundtracking with Yoko Ono and discovering ambient under his Veetdharm guise -- had discovered and tinkered with an impressive array of electronic and electroacoustic instrumentation. Sessions took place in Tokyo in June of ‘85 with Ryo Fukui on co-production duties and Michiaki Saskai at the engineering desk. There are quite a few instruments used by Fisher here, with a range of treatments often bearing compact, dinky, beautiful results.

Some of the names of the toys used here actually sound like you’d imagine they might: of the three versions of Gnossienne #1 here, my favourite has to be the recording made on ‘French Ice Piano’ & ‘Siberian Snow Synthesizer’. Appropriately chilly, nocturnal and lonesome in sound. There are also tracks made with cabaret piano (cute); sugar plum piano (even more cute); German Haiku Pianica (sophisticated continental cafe on a side-street) and the heart-and-homeliness of the ‘family piano : a hint of la-la-la’. And really, these were recorded simply and in a light-hearted way, with hums and soft whistling sometimes audible over the notes; surely the playfully serious Erik himself would have looked on, approvingly from his salon couch.