across for show...

( imagine me )

( under starlit skies )

you can buy across for show... through iTunes!


across for show... notes

the second album was across for show... and yes the trailing periods are supposed to be there. Of all my albums this is the one that people say is their favorite, which is kinda cool that I've created a body of work large enough to have favorites amongst it's fans. Jeez, what an awkward sentence that was! Anyway, this disc is often mentioned as the preferred disc which is kinda strange, as it was essentially created in two days.

i had written the album, recorded it, and sent it to the manufacturers to get, ummmmmmm, manufactured. And one day about a week into the process I decided that I didn't like the way it sounded. The songs were far too personal to release, it was too dark, and I was really scared that if anybody heard it that they'd think I was... well, I dunno what I thought they'd think, but I didn't want them to think it.

so i contacted the manufacturers and asked them to pull the disc. I went back and wrote new songs that weren't so intimate, changed existing ones so they were a little more obscure, and rerecorded it all in the course of a weekend. On the following Monday I dropped off the new version, and voila! The end result was Across For Show...

i ended up listening to the original version when I came across an unlabelled disc a few months ago, the first time I had since I pulled it. I'm glad that I rerecorded it all, 'cause it was a really dark, really bleak album. I suppose it would have appealed to some, but I wouldn't want my heart of darkness out there for people to listen to.

across for show... is very special in that it's the first time Katie Miranda did a cover for me, and of course it's a stunning image that convinced me that I never wanted to work with any other artist. Katie perfectly captures whatever visuals might exist within my music and puts it down for all the world to see, and I've long been convinced that the initial visual presentation by Katie is responsible for at least half of the people that have picked up my stuff.

imagine me is distinct in that I have no recollection of what the song is about. I really can't remember. I have a memory of coming up with the name, and thinking that I was very clever at the time for some reason, but I really have no idea why that is. It's a nice song though, so I thought I'd stick it up here for that reason, and to prove that I don't have something to say about everything.

under starlit skies is another one of the star songs. I have this thing about stars, I see them as being magical, living, all that kinda thing. And this is one of the many songs I've written about that idea.

here's what people have had to say about across for show...

"a writer friend of mine once said that electronic music was the hardest type of music to review and critique because of its diversity and complexity. Further, that the sub-genre of ambient and abstract music has to be even more difficult given the subtle, translucent, wispy nature of such compositions. Mara's Torment (aka Rik MacLean) makes my task even more difficult with avery intricate and poignant examination of human emotion on his release across for show...
across for show glides from track to track seemlessely. Vocals are absent, but this is beneficial to the construction for this album, as they would only serve to disturb the fragile sense of discovery, despair, and... well, torment."
- Wa/ Nocturnal Movements

""across for show" is a brilliant work that I personally use for relaxation most nights when I have trouble sleeping. It is hypnotic and relaxing which makes it perfect for that but also would fit into any environment where people are serious about the music they listen to.
- Sparrow/ the seventh circle

"a beautiful blend of electronic soundscapes where ample percussion and/or intelligently chosen synth sounds keep the ambient nature of this release from entering the realm of boredom. Rik Maclean, the sole member of MT, creates these lush and hauntingly beautiful voiceless melodies. Each song is a work of art on its own, but standouts include "Where We Go To Die," "Where It Begins," and (my personal favorite) "The Effects of Rabies on Angels." Overall, another great release from one of the most underrated dark instrumentalists out there."
- Michael Kidd/ Dark Velvet

"it's a dream tool, an atmospheric aid, nothing for dancing or parties or road trips. Nothing to drink to or sing along with; too pretty and weird to listen to if you're striving to be depressed. It's a strangely private disc; I can't imagine listening to it with company."
- Mehitobel Wilson/ Gothic.Net

"there isn't enough room in one review to give the praise that this album deserves. Mara's Torment has improved since their last album (which was incredible), and with this release, has created a more definitive style for the band."
- Scott Mallonee/ Grinding into Emptiness

"sometimes hypnotic ("Where It Begins") and sometimes divine ("Under Starlit Skies"), but always ambient, I recommend this gem to anyone interested in music that can take you to that other place where all is dim, soft and beautiful... an ambient masterpiece."
- J. Mundok/ The Kettle Black

"i find plenty of originality in Mara's Torment. Both dreams like mine and across for show... are excellent examples of dark electronic music, and I have no doubt that Mara's Torment will make its mark in the history of this genre."
- JaneA "BatGrrl" Kelley/ Nightmusic

"the lightly applied darkness of across for show... can cast a shadow over your surroundings without actually casting your soul into Hell. Should be of interest for both its ethereal/Gothic sensibilities, as well as for its electronics applications."
- David J. Opdyke/ The AmbiEntrance