A dedication to the late synthesist following the release of her first album in 30 years.
The composer, healer and synthesist Pauline Anna Strom was due to appear on the Exchange ahead of the release of Angel Tears in Sunlight, her first album since the '80s. But news of Strom's passing broke in December of 2020, leading Exchange producer Martha to dedicate an episode to Strom's life and work. To build a picture of Strom's practice and legacy, Martha collected stories from those who worked with the artist, from her label family at RVNG Intl. to musicians who cite her as an inspiration, and people who have experienced her healing sessions.
Born without sight in 1946, Strom later settled in San Francisco's Bay Area, where she was introduced to synthesizers and fell in love with electronic music. Her releases as Trans-Millenia Consort first emerged in the '80s, but her distinctively ethereal, otherworldly qualities have resonated with subsequent generations, especially since RVNG Intl. issued an anthology of her work called Trans-Millenia Music in 2017. It was partly Strom's friendship with label founder Matt Werth that re-ignited her desire to share her music. Werth contributes his perspective to this piece alongside John Also Bennett, Ka Baird, Aubrey Trinnaman, Emily Sprague and Karissa Senavitis.