mercredi 3 août 2011

['RAMP] : steel and steam (2011)

Stephen Parsick's universe is as much unusual as the originality of the personage; dark artworks and sometimes without images, inflammatory and provocative album titles, papers to strange calligraphy and a music built from the entrails and fission of earth's core are the attribute of the man as much black as ashes of volcanoes that he wakes up since he crosses the paths of contemporary EM in 1991. But an extremely brilliant being who years after years don’t cease to amaze with works at diapasons of a nightmarish vision and duped by paradoxes as harmonious as mysterious. Sometimes ambient and sometimes cadenced, the music of Stephen Parsick resounds with howling sequences and pulsations in a musical world stunningly powerful. It’s with an old accomplice, Mark  Shreeve, that Stephen Parsick awakens the volcano ['ramp] put in night light by very sombre and ambient Caverna Larvarum of the Doombient series. Eleventh opus of ['ramp], steel and steam is exactly as high as the expectations of a union Parsick / Shreeve. An album, according to the German synthesist and musician, which should be the most accessible of the ['ramp]’s collection and he is not completely wrong. Beyond those powerful sequences and throbbing pulsations on unbridled percussions are hiding some wonderful synthesized melodies which dupe the ear such as the most docile earworms. But steel and steam is also extremely powerful, even violent, and transcends the traces of debris. And this, in the universe of ['ramp], is the equivalent of a bomb!
A strange movement of iron ball, ringing as a sordid and metallic pan flute opens "Zeppelin" which is filling of a strange industrial color. Already Stephen Parsick shows the tones of steal and stream with a sequence emerging out of nowhere and which pulses of its chords fluttering nervously on a furious sequential line which waves with strength among lugubrious breezes with slamming, flickered and echoing percussions and lamentations of twisted metal which are melting to subdued choirs. Drawn in steel "Zeppelin" moves against current, following a powerful crescendo which implodes of an uncommon heaviness on a boiling structure fed by a multitude of heavy resonant sequences which pulse and gallop through a mellotron to silvered tones, of which wandering choirs peer at a superb synth to slow celestial movements waltzing as waves slightly tinted of an Arabian approach. Some oniric synth layers float and sing their melodies on a heavy and languid structure, striking a brief movement of tranquillity before taking back its infernal heavy and oscillating march with its flickered sequences which are busting in our ears before fading in a powerful ethereal final. Very good! Fine arpeggios sparkle at the opening of "node i" which dawn among dark steel breezes zigzagging through boilers and foundries. A rhythm is drawing with fine little bells and exuberant percussions from which the scattered beatings deviate towards a heavy sequential movement with increasing pulsations. "node i" is soaked with a stagnant ambiance before that powerful and heavy sequences, to make winced loudspeakers, transport the track towards a hard-hitting sequential rhythm which pulses among shouts of subterranean sirens. A crazy and energetic rhythm seizes "node i" which is submerged of an incredible sound fauna issued from a metallic fission where percussions and sequences merge in an ascension movement ascent which guides us to the jingling beatings of "node ii" and its powerful circular rhythm which beats its heavy, bass, resonant and flickering sequences. "solenoid" intro throws a bit of tranquillity in this orgy of infernal decibels that is steel and steam with soft breezes imprinted from an iridescent and threatening mist. Gradually the rhythm gets out of depths of twisted metals and waves of oscillating tetanised pulsations which slam and slam in a silvered echo. Fine notes of an electric piano emerge of its violent jingles and are escaping with a splendid melody which is out of tune in this din of goblins busied to mutilate the earth’s crust to bring us Arc territories, but with a more silvered velocity. "[led]" resumes where "Zeppelin" had closed but with a nice electric piano from which notes move with hesitation in the abyssal heaviness which we find on "Zeppelin", as well as these wonderful mellotron synth layers.
"Puppets" introduces us into Mark Shreeve segment and his big Moog IIIc Modular. It’s a great bed song which follows an intro where heterogeneous tones hoot among caustic breezes and twisted reverberations. Fine sequences appear and waddle casually on ashes of a foundry. It’s a long nursery rhyme with delicate arpeggios which spin such as a carousel where crystalline chords bead in an enchanting ritornello filled of long and bit apocalyptic synth breaths. It’s a pure wonder which evolves with a light threatening crescendo to end its imps’ dance in the hostile winds of its intro. "steel and steam part i" begins with a delicate electric piano which spreads its notes among a soft mellotron mist which waltzes against the stream. A nice melody which keeps this so particular mark of ['ramp] works and which is awaken towards its end with small jingles and a heavy pulsation which bombards and resounds as an immense tom-tom hammered directly from hells. We are falling in "steel and steam part ii" where the amalgam of piano notes and heavy pulsations pursue their crusade on a heavy and chaotic tempo. The electric piano adds a progressive rock touch to a tempo become jerkier which is throwing, opened melody, into the abysses of "steel and steam part iii". If, so far, your loudspeakers hung on it might be ending here, on extremes weighty pulsations which throb buzz among metallic percussions which slam without reserves. We are in an infernal cacophony which gradually becomes blurred to dive "steel and steam part iii" in a rhythmic indecision fed by resonant pulsations and great sequencing art which shape a powerful circular tempo to criss-cross steel rhythms where chthonian choirs are lulling in the hits of the Grim Reaper sabres who takes a look at a horizon forged by sequential whims of 2 heavyweights of contemporary EM. The rhythm always following an ascending tangent, we penetrate into the blasting spheres of "steel and steam part iv" where the undulating sequential movement skips around an intensive sequential and pulsating pounding, hyper-resonant infernal pulsations, explosions of metallurgical boilers and strident synth roarings. Some powerful colourful tones are bickering a thin line of a gyrating rhythm and explode as in an immense video game to finally catch up a kind of appeasement, even if fed by a string of alternating sequences which quiver nervously around this soft melody which opened "steel and steam part i". Wow! I’m still totally dumbfounded and amazed that my ears, as well as my loudspeakers, hung out in front of this powerful explosion coming out from this fusion of those infernal Moogs of Parsick and Shreeve.
steel and steam is a pure wonder that will stun you as much that it will charm you. It’s an album of a rare violence and unrivalled intensity where bubble rhythms, sequences and resonant pulsations to draw rhythms difficulty surrounded but from where are escaping very beautiful melodious structures. It’s an amalgam of Redshift, Arc and ['ramp]
styles in a universe as black as dense where work Parsick’s goblins to weaken the structures of the universe. Simply astonishing, steel and steam is doubtless the most powerful album of these last years and one of the most beautiful this year. Get it quick as there are only 300 numbered cd available...and after that; ZiP! Nothing!


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

As the Doombient Music website is no longer open you can order this CD directly from Stephen Parsick:

1 commentaire:

  1. Excellent cd , i love it, so exciting is on this cd with Stephens brilliant EM artistry.


Remarque : Seuls les membres de ce blogue sont autorisés à publier des commentaires.