lundi 31 octobre 2011

RENÉ SPLINTER: Transit Realities (2010)

Transit Realities is as good as Elmery and it's still bursting of Tangerine Dream memories!

Alaska (28:19)
1 Denali 2:08
2 Kenai 2:39
3 Alatna River 12:40
4 Bering Glacier 6:58
5 Snowmobile Race 4:10
6 Fairbanks 1:44
Metropolitain (26:22)
7 Transit Line 6:31
8 Bahnhof Zoo 6:05
8 Palast 8:15
10 The Big Star 5:31


After a first album modulated on the imprints of his influences, René Splinter offers us in Transit Realities a more personal album. An album of which we can always feel reminiscences of Tangerine Dream but where the Netherlands synthesist also shows a beautiful melodious and orchestral approach. Divided into 2 musical acts, Transit Realities is a touristic journey between the borders of imagination and reality. Alaska is written from pictures of a book on this Arctic country and offers a more poetic and romantic approach while Metropolitain follows a trip made in Germany and submerges us of a musical bath with strong Teutonic aromas. On these 2 visions totally at the opposite of realities, René Splinter weaves two long musical paintings where nervous flickering sequences forge evolutionary rhythms and melodious structures become entangled on beautiful and striking orchestral arrangements which are not without reminding us a certain Johannes Schmoelling.
Short and efficient, "Denali" opens this imaginary journey of Alaska with a beautiful symphonic approach. A pulsating and hopping bass line awakens the rollings of Bass drums as well as solid percussions which support a lively rhythmic structure, fragmented by horns impetus and violins surges. Terrific these orchestral arrangements border a heavy and staccato rhythm from where escapes a soft melody that has a tender Asian mood and is strummed on a delicate piano. A piano from which notes are melting to a sequential movement and guide us towards the romantic "Kenai". This short melancholic melody with notes and chords skipping delicately in clouds of mist and violin strings scents the beautiful melodies from the Underwater Sunlight era and brings us to "Alatna River" and its evolutionary rhythms. A series of crisscrossed sequences pummel and tumble down under diverse breaths and lamentations of a synth in tones as tenebrous as iridescent. With this rhythm in constant permutation "Alatna River" reveals a great sequencing which couple with percussions in order to form sectorial rhythms. Rhythms sometimes bombarded, sometimes staccato and sometimes hypnotically arrhythmic which border nice melodies from the Underwater Sunlight and Tyger years and where the synth spits violin lines, frees melancholic mists and merge its acute solos with those of a quixotic guitar. After an intro with tones as much heterogeneous as atmospherics, "Bering Glacier" its sounds parcels with a good progressive sequential movement. The rhythm growing on sequences and electronic percussions to rattles endings, "Bering Glacier" reveals a wonderful melodious approach with suave choirs and knocks of violins which continue in the furrows of "Snowmobile Race" whereas that "Fairbanks" encloses this imaginary journey in Alaska with a soft melody where a piano accompanies a fluty synth, waking in us the finale of Legend. These are great memories!
A sinuous resonant wave pierces oblivion, urging a pulsatory sequence to pound a hypnotic tempo. The sky streaked by iridescent synth blades, "Transit Line" opens Metropolitain with nervous sequences which pummel eagerly in a heavy rhythmic structure to couple in percussions and powerful metallic cymbals. This track built on a rich and rather complex structure is fed by an intense rhythm which rises and falls on hectic sequences, fustigating in passage a synth with heavy riffs and powerful pads. A synth as symphonic as caustic which also rocks beautiful solos and fine harmonies moulded in an urban din. "Bahnhof Zoo" sticks to "Transit Line" finale, but offers a more suave and warmer rhythmic structure. Reminiscences of Tangerine Dream abound on this track with sequences divided between a wave-like or pulsatory rhythm. A rhythm a bit hatched where slamming and echoic percussions are embraced by a splendid nasal synth. A synth which severs its melodies to offer them parsimoniously in a pleasant blend of its tones. Sometimes serene and sometimes hiccupping, this indecisive rhythm submerges us in the musical memories of Thief and Exit. The intro of "Palast" slows down the pace with a mysterious synthesized mist which floats in a lost world. A pulsation emerges and awakens a synth among which sharp breaths and ghostly laments recover a latent rhythm. Still there, recollections of Tangerine Dream stuff our ears with this veiled intro filled of an approach to iridescent tones. In the 3rd minute René Splinter lays wonderful orchestral arrangements with a thick cloud of violins which draw the harmonious shape of snowflakes fall. This hatched melody leads on a crisscrossed sequential movement of which the ascending curves are fed by good percussions, synth riffs with well known tones and solos that sound like a guitar that we would recognize among all. "Palast" hooks us with a rebellious finale to conclude towards the nebulous intro of "The Big Star" and its nice ballad which brings us unmistakably in the heart of the glorious period of Franke, Froese and Schmoelling.
More personal than Almery and less centered on the epicentre of his influences, René Splinter amazes with Transit Realities. Yes we can hear on it the musical influences of Tangerine Dream. But this time the approach is more different with wonderful orchestral arrangements which embellish the harmonies of synths as well as the solos, while revolving around a delicious mix of sequences and percussions. The result is a very beautiful album where progressive and modular rhythms support structures as much melodious as mysterious. Mesmerizing structures which feed 2 long musical acts to the antipodes of an imaginary journey, made in the heart of the episodic influences of 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

If you want to know more about René Splinter and watch videos, you should visit his website

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