The 2000’s

2000: The 1996 compilation cassette APHELION was released as a CD-R on Rob Andrews’s Transfer label TRM7

2001: The compilation cassette A CHANGE FOR THE DIFFERENT, previously released in 1991 was released as a CD-R on Rob Andrews’s Transfer label TRJ 6. 

In 2000 Steve began working on a similar styled follow up to the prog rock aspirations of CONVERGENCE and had the material composed and ready for recording for a new album to be titled “Sunsets of Summers Past” when circumstances dictated a different direction. Due to a demand for more of his cassette material Cyclops decided that he should compile a follow up to the RIDING THE STORM CD. This time though, Steve decided that the tracks would be completely re-recorded and re-arranged. The resultant album, OPENER OF THE WAYS, was released in June 2002. A new and longer arrangement of LAST LIGHT was put forward for that years Cyclops Sampler CD only to be dropped at the last hurdle (again!) as the album was exceeding its running limits.

OPENER OF THE WAYS 
June 2002 Cyclops CD CYCL 123
(New recordings of cassette album tracks)

Continuum 
Transitions Part 1-3
Nebula
Opener Of The Ways Part 1-2
Trancer
Golden Flame
Centre Of Forces Part 1-2
Night Tides
Sea Child
Island Part 1-2
Last Light Part 1-2

2002: The compilation cassette ESCAPE FROM THE CAGE VOL 3: IMAGES OF INFINITY, previously released in 1993, was released as a CD-R on the Auricle label AMSCDR 009. Copies available from:

ASHTAR 
With LINDA HILLMAN 
2003 Auricle Ltd. Edition CD-R AMCDR 028
(Remastered version of Eye 004). Now long deleted:

2004: A track from Steve’s vaults recorded in 1978 titled “Moon Drone” appeared on the Auricle CD-R ¿DRONSZ? AMCDR 038 compiled by Alan Freeman. Copies available from:

 2005: The previously unreleased alternate version of “Last Light” from “Opener of the Ways” was briefly available on the short lived PORTALS IV album overseen by Chris “Etherfysh” Christou. Rain of “Cerulean Blue” fame remastered the track.

DREAMFAST

Steve is also a huge admirer of the film composer John Barry and throughout the 90’s had recorded several albums worth of material that tapped into the spirit of Barry’s 1960’s jazz flavoured musical scores with the emphasis on melody, drama, adventure and mystery, etc. but the material had never seen the light of day. However, a fortuitous chain of events allowed Steve’s ambitions to become realised and to record a John Barry influenced album.

In 2005, Lew Fisher, a founding member of the US Progressive Music Society bought Steve’s OPENER OF THE WAYS album on the strength of the cover art and thankfully was not disappointed when he heard the music! Lew asked Steve to become a member and soon after a UK writer, singer, musician and producer also joined called Rain who had released the critically acclaimed album CERULEAN BLUE and Steve struck up a friendship with him. Later in 2005, the President of Dreamfast Cinema, artist and film director Bruce Wood, joined the society and he expressed the desire to launch a record label of his own and to sign new acts. Steve therefore sent Bruce a demo of some of his Barry influenced music and Bruce, having liked the demo, proposed that Steve record an album as if for an imaginary movie and offered him a contract to do so. Rain agreed to produce the album and with the budget provided by Dreamfast and Rain’s contacts in the musical world, it was possible to bring in some high calibre musicians to play on the album:

The sax player Iain Ballamy on Tenor & Soprano Sax. Iain was the winner of the BBC Radio 3 award for innovation at the British Jazz Awards in 2001 and was also a member of the former drummer of Yes and King Crimson Bill Bruford’s band Earthworks.

The principal flautist of the London Symphony Orchestra and Professor of Flute at the Royal Academy of Music, Gareth Davies on Flute & Alto Flute.

The son of the conductor Arthur Davison CBE, Darryll Davison on Cello.

Steve Hillman on Keyboards, Drums & Percussion.

A former member of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Philharmonia Phil Morgan on Viola & Violin.

As well as producing and mastering the album, Rain also contributed his musical expertise by playing bass and guitar.

Come March 2006 and Steve’s most ambitious album to date THE WORLD OVER was finished. It became available for digital download in the US in August 2006 and available as a CD from US stores on September 5th 2006. Unfortunately the album was initially beset with distribution and availability problems due to the distributors going bankrupt but a deal was struck with another distributor and the album was launched again on January 9th 2007. It is also now available worldwide as a download via iTunes, Amazon etc. A live concert in London was in the planning stages but sadly had to be cancelled as backing fell through.

THE WORLD OVER 
2006 Dreamfast Cinema CD DF003

Fired Up 
Linda’s Theme 
Long Hot Night 
The World Over 
As Chance Would Have It 
Flute Jazz 
Thirties Thing 
Looking Back 
In Dreams 
Slow Down 
What The Hell 
Regrets 
The Chase Is On 
Journey’s End

In February 2007, Terry Hawke of Radio HFM 102.3 FM in the UK asked Steve to compose a theme tune for his Chill Out Sessions radio show and live DJ gigs and the resultant piece titled HAWKETRONIQUE had its first airing on Saturday 7th April 2007 and can be heard opening DJ Hawke’s show every Saturday night. Steve & Linda were subsequently interviewed live in the studios of HFM on May 5th 2007.

As well as Terry Hawke being a DJ he has also written several sc-fi narratives and in 2007 he put forward the idea to Steve that he could incorporate some of them into one of Steve’s musical projects. Having had plans in the pipeline for some time for a space rock themed album, early in 2009 Steve sketched out several tracks and the basis for a new album was conceived. 

In June 2007 Steve played electric guitar on four tracks on THE MYSTIC & THE MACHINE album by US based Alpha Wave Movement which was released later that year on the Harmonic Resonance Recordings label HRR 070901. 

Ra

Back in 1988 at that years Electronica in London, Land of Yrx also played and Steve met their bassist Rob Andrews. At Rob’s instigation, Steve appeared on several compilation albums and then Rob also became signed to Cyclops Records. In 2004 he invited Steve to play keyboards on a new project he was working on with the guitarist and keyboard player David Groves. David had previously worked with Rob on Rob’s 2002 Cyclops album THE HOST. Rob decided to expand the project to become a group based album with Rob, David & Steve all contributing to the arranging and writing of the tracks. With Rob on bass, David on lead guitar and Steve on keys the group became complete with the addition on drums of Dai Rees. The resultant album WAKE was released by Cyclops in June 2007.

Ra website: http://www.ra-rising.com/

December 2006: “Last Farewells” from “Wake” appeared on the 
CYCLOPS SAMPLER 6 CD Compiled by Malcolm Parker.

January 2009 saw the release of the second Ra album titled RISING. This is a compilation of unreleased solo tracks by Ra members and new versions of previously released music. Steve has two solo tracks – OVER THE EDGE which was recorded during the CONVERGENCE album sessions in 1998 and a new edit of 1991’s EYES OF JANUS from the A CHANGE FOR THE DIFFERENT album.

In 2009 the ETHERICOM label was set so as to release Steve’s archive material. Steve’s first album, 1983’s “From Distant Shores”, was released in 2009 as a limited edition CD-R (now deleted) with an additional 27 minutes comprising five previously unreleased tracks recorded in the same time period as the original album.