lundi 17 janvier 2011


I’m telling you straightaway, Retrochet II has nothing to do with Retrochet I. Because even if sequences are always grand-sounding and frenzied, Retrochet II embraces rather two long paradoxical musical lanes where the melody is in hiding in experimental, psychedelic, electronic and sequential approaches filled with a melodic duality. All the opposite of tracks that were more structured and sharply less improvised than Retrochet I, Retrochet II seems to be the dark side of Retrochet I.
Split into 3 parts, Cascade Effect I starts very slowly with its strange electronic dialect submerged by waves and delicate keys of a solitary keyboard. It’s a half aquatic and half cosmic world where delicate flutes emerge from this syncretic intro to mold their breezes with superb rippling strata of an ethereal mellotron which will form the melodious portion of Cascade Effect I. At around the 5th minute we feel the movement taking a darker approach with frenzied sequences pulsations. Sequences which strum with frenzy under somber reverberations and fine tinkling which will get astray in oscillations of a heavy line of bass, while sequencer chords are overlapping themselves in furious doubloons worthy of Ramp and Redshift. But the strength is fragile, because even if Cascade Effect I tumbles down at full tilt, the movement is flied over by nice strata of a foggy mellotron and soft layers of a lyrical synth which kept in memory the fluty breezes of the intro. Violence against tenderness Cascade Effect I rolls in full duality with its tempered surges in eclectic ambiances. At around the 13th minute sequential strikes are easing to get mislaid in a brief moment of syncretic. They hem in a metallic mist before resurfacing with a more balanced waddling to restock Cascade Effect I of a tempo as heavy, but more spaced out, filled with contorted nasal streaks and synth strata which hoot in a mist which smothers light gongs ringing. In brief, a howler sound universe and of which sounds strangeness resounds in a lugubrious sequenced universe which is getting out of breath and enters a grim universe at around the 21th minute. And slowly Cascades Effect I is raising again on its sequences and pushes its last sequential beatings beyond the horrifying mooing which constantly ripped its hypnotic route.
Although built on the same precepts as Cascades Effect I, Cascade Effect II universe is more ethereal, equal to its tenebrous approach. Gongs and carillons ring in a fine glass whirlwind and a soft mystic mist of a mellotron synth which wraps Cascade Effect II intro. Monastic are roaming there and expire breaths of mercy on the implosion of a line of bass which, slowly, livens up the opening of Cascade Effect II. Distantly sequences chords disentangle unfold dully beneath tinkled ringing, lugubrious breezes and a line of bass with slow hesitating movements. A musical world in ebullience which inflames the rhythm, with a sequence à la Tangerine Dream, and which pounds a wavy-like and sinuous tempo. It’s a heavy rhythm which overlaps musical plains with tones as much eclectic as on the 1st part. In fact, Cascades Effect II is the big sister of its brother, with a rhythm closer to the roots of the Dream which pulses intensely in a universe stuffed of streaks and strata as lugubrious as nasal, peculiar to Cascades Effect II characteristics. It’s a sequenced symphony on the same themes, with nearly some variations, which follows the same tangents and structures but with sharper and more crystal clear tones.
If Retrochet I innovated with a Berlin School modeled in still virgin atmospheres, Retrochet II plunges us in height into the heart of old Berlin School with 2 long tracks where improvisations seem to merge so well in coherent structures, a little as these feverish concerts of Tangerine Dream. Moreover, Retrochet II is an extravagant sequential and experimental journey in the heart of the Dream den of the 70s. It’s a strong album which will please fans of Ramp, Redshift and Pollard/Daniel/Booth and, of course, Tangerine Dream.

Sylvain Lupari (2011)
Cet article est disponible en Français sur le site de Guts of Darkness, dont je suis chroniqueur sous le nom de Phaedream :

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