AUTOMATON² by Murat Ses

Murat Ses

Automaton² [Automaton Square, San Francisco Miami Impressions] (Clou Records Clou-005, Peacework Music, 2005)

With Automaton², his newest album, Murat goes on telling musical stories of his

impressions what he dubs as ‘the timeless and boundless context of civilization’ since early 90s.

This fourth solo album of Murat Ses comes up with new electronic, dance, ambient world

songs which also have the hallmark of his legendary fusion style known as Anadolu

Pop (Grand Prix du Disque in Paris, France, back then in early 70s) and

Electric Levantine (a more refined form of Anadolu Pop from 90s thru today). The

album has great cover artwork byÖpBe, who also redesigned the artwork of

Murat’s former albums released by Clou Records.

All tracks were composed during and following Murat’s stays in the U.S.A, predominantly

in California and Florida. Some of the tracks have cross-over elements of Turkish,

Japanese and Native American percussion styles in a new approach.

One of my favorite tracks Eau Gallie was composed when Murat was in Melbourne,

Central Florida, during the hurricane ‘Michelle’; impressions of the beautiful Eau Gallie

river, where once Seminole warriors and hunters paddled by. Another example, Polk

Street displays aural impressions of the artist after his stay in one of his

favorite cities in the world next to Istanbul (San Francisco). Street sounds, cable car

and other hallmarks of the beautiful city that has certain similarities to Istanbul,

Murat’s environment where he grew up. Multicultural musical influences stressing Chinese

and other cultures as one walks thru Polk Street from South to North…

As for Miami impressions, Valle Marineris 2 has street noises and other typical

sounds of Miami, Indian Creek has Seminole and additional Istanbul sounds of the

1910’s and 20’s. According to CD’s booklet, this track was composed after a nice day

around Indian Creek in Miami.

Pagangora, Yoruk, Hattushili and Great Weekend are other

brilliant crossovers of Turkish and Native American music traditions.

Most important, musically thread, Murat tries to stress is, the historical migrations

from Central Asia over the Behring Strait and strong cultural affinities (such as

linguistic, shamanic, musical) between Turkic and Native American cultures as a result

of this long historical journey. Native American influences, all flowing into Murat’s

unique Turkic traditions with a great finesse, make his sound unique. Melodies,

percussion, human voice in Native American and Turkic traditions as well as Inuit and

Anatolian nomadic music traditions make ‘the sound’.

Regarding civilization and culture, Murat’s point of view is a very special one, looking

at and beyond the contemporary issues in a way that’s neither orientalistic nor

occidentalistic. In this approach, there would be no ‘clash of cultures’, since

we all are ‘one and same thing’. Maybe we are conceiving the whole ‘one’ matter from different
perspectives and we believe that we are seeing and experiencing

differing matters as it is in the newest explanations of the so-called ‘String


What listeners of Murat’s music would most likely agree with me is, his keeping of the

‘human touch’ although using synthesizers and other electronic sounds. This

possibly comes from his predominantly ‘live’ playing on his micro-tuned synths

during recording sessions, from the vibrant vitality of his field recordings and last

but not least from the way he handles all this material. A great album to experience !

Author: sven