This is all the tape said: ENCOUNTER. And when I started listening, expecting to hear some run of the mill mix tape packed with unknown '90s shit punk bands I would never be able to identify, I first heard nothing. Then, quietly and slowly, I started to get drawn in to the sounds on this barely marked cassette. After some research I was led to ambient pioneer MICHAEL STEARNS, whose time spent in the deserts of Arizona and New Mexico goes a long way towards explaining the images of a clear night sky crashing into another dimension that these sounds conjure up. Stearns' Encounter: A Journey In The Key Of Space from 1988 is an ambient masterpiece - surely you can dismiss it as New Age drivel if you like (and I wouldn't argue), but if you spend the right kind of time with this recording, the build up to "Dimensional Shift: Across The Threshold" and the aural travels that follow will take you to another place. If sound is an escape, then Encounter is express passage to another place.