1 Amongst Dark Clouds 9:50
2 Parabolic Excursions 10:40
3 Crossing the Range 15:17
4 Strange Attractors 17:34
5 Return Vector 14:52
6 Trip the Light Fandango 7:11
Established as an indisputable leader in EM since his very first steps in 1980, Ian Boddy is as the good wine, in the exception that his overconsumption does not put to sleep nor intoxicates the senses but overexcites the delight caused by a wonderful electronic vine. Year after year and album after album, the English synthesist knew how to develop an artistic approach where his ambiances as much ethereal as cosmic and so much chthonian than eclectic were grafted in rhythms knit by subtle removable and evolutionary phases of which the permutations pass by powerful synth momentums or skilful sequenced ascents, giving to his EM an extrovert approach which transcends the walls of an abstract culture. If one would like to seize Ian Boddy's career in a single album, Strange Attractors would be the ideal springboard. It’s a powerful and intense album where synths weave dark and elusive ambiances which split up and tear away on the cliffs of rhythms, hungry for and fond of these moments of perdition unique to the moods of glaucous poetry which encircles the universes of the founder of DiN label.
Recorded in concert within the framework of the Awakenings EM Concerts in April2011, Strange Attractors is the 12th work available in a downloadable format on DiN Digital Download platform. Presented in a nice artwork with attractive graphics and a series of pictures from the concert, the album begins by a deep spatial immersion. A little as a filament leaving with resistance our cerebral aura, a fine synthesized wave ends up in the galactic depths to open "Amongst Dark Clouds". Only master on board, Ian Boddy multiplies the synth layers which coil in an impressive lunar waltz of which the orchestral momentums overfly the fine carillons which ring in an absolute oblivion. Intense and captivating, "Amongst Dark Clouds" wraps us of an aura of solitude from where are escaping discreet pulsations as well as metallic chords with random movements which jostle slightly the dark winds which switch into cosmic choruses. Fine sequences which sound like percussions of glasses dance freely at the opening of "Parabolic Excursions", chasing away the morphic vapours of "Amongst Dark Clouds". These sequences flutter and tinkle of an enchanting transparency, a little as in Eddie Jobson's universe and his fabulous Theme of Secrets, awakening the impulsions of a bass line of which the corrosive élans bite a static rhythm which is overhung by synth waves that sound so much like those of Martenot's. The movement is swirling. It follows a spheroidal tangent where cosmic mists and choirs unite their secret identities to embrace a hypnotic comfort while quietly the sequences drum again with the spectral waves of Martenot. It is in the acuteness breaths of "Parabolic Excursions" that begins the descent of "Crossing the Range". These oblong breaths move slowly such as sinuous sound arcs to adorn the abyssal depth which reigns over here and go astray in a subtle mixture of astral choirs. In full control of our cerebral mummification, Ian Boddy brings down some mechanical pulsations which surf on a cosmic mist, whereas the cymbals are moulding some floating tsitt-tsitt; prelude to a rhythm which becomes heavier, under the streaks and rustlings of a synth to spectral howlings. Between 2 two rhythmic phases and 2 unreal ambiances, "Crossing the Range" evolves with all of its ambiguity, caressing on the passage the chthonian mists and the progressive rhythms all in stamping on the jingles of the mechanical percussions which quiver in a smooth mellotron wadding. The finale explodes of a heavy circular rhythm à la Arc to be made turn pale the hells.
The title track chains up with a post- apocalyptic approach where threatening synth layers and sinuous caustic reverberations encircle various heavy resonant pulsations. It reigns over this "Strange Attractors" track a strange mood of a distress world of steel-making, a little à la Blade Runner, which calms down a little after the 8th minute to let a soft flute displays its celestial feelings which float bitterly in an iconoclastic world. It’s a short moment of appeasement where the winds of purity caress the latent distortions of a world of destruction which reborn of its ashes with its waves which twirl in a disastrous fury, letting the choirs and glaucous pulsations mixing up to a demonic arrhythmia up until the threshold of time. There where the flutes are pushing their last breaths, under the resonant curves of the sound arcs which throb in the isolation up to the doors of "Return Vector". After an intro where the dark winds scatter the Dantesque ruins of "Strange Attractors", the delicate drummed rhythm of "Return Vector" switches of direction towards heavy sequences which resound among crystalline ringing and caustic waves filled by cosmic resonances to converge on a rhythm built on a fluid and harmonic staggering. A rhythm sprinkled by delicious zest of groovy loops which coo over an ambiance filled by a deep chthonian flavour where the vestiges of Arc soak into the roots of Redshift with dark choruses which roam on a rhythmic structure subtly progressive. Hybrid, the synth frees a thick cloud of iridescent tones which scratch the fluidity of the rhythm while fusing short plaintive solos and splendid bewitching strata of which the vague spectral approaches hoot above the percussions to ringing of glasses which sparkle on a nest of pulsatory sequences. The musical ornament is terribly rich and intense. Ian Boddy looks like a real octopus with his hands which manoeuvre synths to sharp solos, with appealing mist (as much mephistophelic as cosmic) and dark choruses as well as sequencers to arrhythmic pulsations and rhythms structures to many forms. And finally these electronic percussions with random and undisciplined strikings supporting a rhythmic structure as much complex as hallucinating which ends in a wonderful blending of Arc/Boddy/Redshift . "Light the Trip Fandango" concludes straight off this concert. Slamming percussions encircle a sequential movement filled by multiple pulsations and wild percussions which sound like keys of a dactylo on the loose, while a keyboard draws fine harmonies with fluid keys which flutter around this wall of percussions and sequenced pulsations. Always in perfect symbiosis with its abstruse rhythms, the synth displays its bed of mist, its hybrid waves and its shrill solos, cementing "Light the Trip Fandango" in its role of an encore which closes a concert under the stars in a bubbling rhythm. A rhythm which gradually dies away in the fabulous and nostalgic Martenot waves. Those kinds of waves that make the whales sing on he cosmic corals.
Strange Attractors is a real tour de force which demonstrates all the dexterity of Ian Boddy to juggle with his panoply of instruments without losing the necessary concentration to shape an impressive musical world where the rhythms and the atmospheres are linked and overlap in a delicious cosmic cocktail. I would like being there and see this concert, only to see the strategy and the artistic architecture which inspired Ian Boddy to exceed the stage of improvisation to offer 6 solid titles where the emotion and intensity are the heart of a musical adventure which finally doesn’t really need eyes to be understood. Here’s an album which will introduce you easily into the fabulous sound world of Ian Boddy and which is available at the end of your fingers on the site of DiN: http://www.din.org.uk/din/node/422
Sylvain Lupari (2012)
Cet article est disponible en Français sur le site de Guts of Darkness, dont je suis chroniqueur sous le nom de Phaedream: http://www.gutsofdarkness.com/god/objet.php?objet=14912