Ralph Lundsten (October 6 – 1936) died July 5th.
Ralph Lundsten has passed away at the age of 86. The Swedish composer, film director, artist and author was an early pioneer of solo electronic music, releasing over 80 albums between 1966 and 2020.
Lundsten had many of his instruments built to order and can claim to have developed the first polyphonic sequencer, the Andromatic. At his own Andromeda studio, in a bright pink wooden mansion named Castle Frankenburg outside Stockholm, he recorded pieces which were used as themes by Swedish TV and radio. But his fame didn’t spread as wide as that of Klaus Schulze or Jean-Michel Jarre – most of his releases were on his own label, many with titles in Swedish, and his shifting, multi-layered style was much harder to pin down. His influences were as much from classical experimentalists such as Karlheinz Stockhausen as from the general run of commercial electronic music.
Lundsten’s albums “Cosmic Love” (1976), “The New Age” (1982) and “Cosmic Phantazy” (2003) were more widely known than most, though his preferred style of sleeve illustration made many albums appear as though they dated from the 1950’s. In 2008 he was awarded the “Illis Quorum” medal for outstanding contributions to Swedish culture.
YouTube features many complete Ralph Lundsten albums including “Cosmic Love”, as well as documentaries (mostly in Swedish) giving a tour around his psychedelically decorated home and studio. His website offers plenty more information and photos as well as over 20 CD titles for sale, though check to see if it will remain active…