The Spiral Staircase

R11A The Spiral Staircase
Mark Sheeky
2008

Detail from The Spiral Staircase Detail from The Spiral Staircase Detail from The Spiral Staircase

Track listing
1. Ascent (2:01)
2. Sky Dragons (8:12)
3. Goblin Accountants (4:52)
4. The Cave of Rain (1:22)
5. The Goblin Graveyard (2:27)
6. Elephants and Moths (4:01)
7. Sea Monsters (3:17)
8. The Battle of Angels and Cxthys (6:05)
9. The Marble Steps (2:46)
10. Finale (6:42)

About this album
Mark Sheeky originally created The Spiral Staircase in 2002 using the first generation of his self-designed music software, Noise Station. His musical inspiration was mathematical structures and the shifting chord sequences in baroque music, the music of Vivaldi and Bach. Organ and harpsichord music is fixed in volume, so its expression and colour must come from the notes themselves.

Mark wanted to avoid special effects in the music; no tricks or samples, no emulation of things in the real world, but to create music that was pure and focused on the notes and chords, using these to convey the emotion and narrative. A story evolved as he composed, a feeling of running and energy; upwards, curling, flying, and the title grew into a fantasy of different worlds which appeared inside a fairytale tower.

The music in The Spiral Staircase is dramatic and highly rhythmic, although there are no percussion instruments. The sound palette consists of analogue waves; saw waves, sine waves and filtered white noise.

This is the second recording of The Spiral Staircase. The 2004 version was one single track. This version was recorded in 2007 using Prometheus, the next generation of Sheeky's proprietary music software, but musically both albums are almost identical, the only significant difference is the addition of the Sea Monsters section, which was composed in 2004 but excluded at that time.

Like all of Mark's music, the compact disc version is the definitive, best, version, and he considers the art and physicality of this format part of the artwork as a whole. Mark created the cover artwork in 2002, and produced new super-high resolution images for the 8-page CD release of 2020. The art seems to match the energy of the music, and the mood of the images and the music are inseparable.

The Spiral Staircase
Stream/Buy Now

The Spiral Staircase
Jewel Cased CD with 8-page booklet
Order CD via Bandcamp