Photo credit: Jacob Khrist
Jeff Mills and NTS Radio present ‘The Outer Limits’, a conceptual listening experience created in collaboration with NASA and Axis Records setting out to redefine radio. ‘The Outer Limits’ is comprised of six hour-long episodes exploring astrophysics and science fiction through abstract soundscapes and spoken word, with completely original new and unreleased music by Jeff Mills and guest musicians. Produced around the world with artists from the fields of classical, jazz and electronic music with scientific direction and imagery from NASA, The Outer Limits is a truly multi-disciplinary radio series, existing at the intersection between science and contemporary experimental music.
Jeff Mills, known widely for working at the forefront of electronic music for over 30 years, continues to be an innovator with ‘The Outer Limits’, pushing the boundaries of the traditional radio experience with a project that borrows from immersive radio theatre, science documentary, concept album, and underground music radio. The series will see theatrical science fiction narratives seamlessly interwoven with original music recorded all over the world, exploring themes as far ranging as interstellar travel, theories of time, the mysteries of deep space and the uncharted alien depths of the Earth’s oceans.
“Working in radio for almost a decade during the 1980s gave me a different perspective on how audio and music can be impactful devices. The freedom I was allowed then, to program whatever I chose, made me think at length about how to make programs interesting and informative for listeners. This has inspired my approach for ‘The Outer Limits’, to create radio resembling TV science fiction, dealing with subjects that can be humbling and psychologically introspective, without needing to have predictable happy endings. If you can imagine a young person running an untethered radio show having grown up in the Midwest, regularly watching Rod Serling’s ‘The Twilight Zone’, collecting Marvel comics, all the while NASA was sending humans up into outer space, well, you get the idea…
‘The Outer Limits’, titled after a science fiction US TV series in the 1960s is yet another opportunity for me to explore the unknown through music and fantastical storytelling. The aim of this radio program is to deliver wild experiences, first and foremost. This is something that I believe each and every one of us needs more of. These episodes will be told in an uncompromising manner, constructed in ways conventional radio dares not explore. ‘The Outer Limits’ is informative, providing useful information, but in a never before seen format …”
Each one-hour long episode in the six-part series will be made from enough original music to comprise an album in its own right, and each will be listenable standalone as well as part of a wider series. They will be broadcast over the course of the year via NTS Radio, each installation examining an individual theme from space, excluding the final episode which will be solely focused on music.
The first episode dives into the idea of the ‘Black Hole’, featuring music by Jeff Mills as well as American pianist Kathleen Supové and British violinist Thomas Gould. ‘The Outer Limits: Black Hole’ airs on NTS Wednesday 17th January at 2pm (GMT/UK) / 3pm (CET/EU). More info on the series can be found at [LINK].
The debut show on Wednesday 17th January will explore the bizarre properties of black holes. The first invitees will be the pianist Kathleen Supové and violinist Thomas Gould, who recorded for the episode over the past summer in both New York and London. Parts of this episode were narrated and written by Dr Jameson Graef Rollins, who works at LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory).
Find out more here.