dimanche 18 mars 2012

CLAUDIO MERLINI:Enchantment (2012)

"Once again Claudio Merlini built a harmonious which hangs in the soul as in the heart"
1 Desire 3:40
2 Portraits 3:51
3 A Quiet Place 4:44
4 Enchantment 5:20
5 Faventibus Ventis 5:15
6 In the Air 4:01
7 Frozen Light 5:20
8 Masquerade Girl 5:21 
9 Inner Spirit 3:43
10 Float in the Dark 4:09
11 Magic Sleigh Ride 3:52 
12 Karma 6:10
13 Book of Memories 4:05
14 The Tower 5:59
15 Enchantment Power Mix 5:32
16 Enchantment DW Summer Club Mix 7:30
After a second album (The Colours of Music) where the rhythms got intertwined into musical embraces to the scents of Tangerine Dream (Le Parc), Jean Michel Jarre (Metamorphoses) and Vangelis, Claudio Merlini comes back with a second album on AD Music label and its New Age division. Closer of the New Age and Easy Listening borders than of contemporary electronic based sequence music, Enchantment proposes 14 titles which flow with more sweetness and romantism than his previous work where the rhythms, always soft, merge with beautiful melodies weaved in the sighs of Asia.
Spreading his romantic approach over recurring melodious themes, the Italian synthesist announces his colors from the start with "Desire" and its celestial choirs which introduce a slow lascivious rhythm. The percussions are bubbling in a static broth while chords to tones of guitars are forging a meditative melody which strolls in a musical pattern weaved in a tearing of Merlini's influences. "Portraits" follows closely with its percussions rolling which bring us towards a melodious approach where crystal clear arpeggios stream with a beautiful fluidity on a good nervous sequential line. The approach is very near the melodies of Tangerine Dream in the The Atomic Seasons with choirs and Mellotron violins which float above a musical structure filled by Asian flavors. With its silky flute on a rhythm which waddles innocently on fine percussions and chords of a romantic guitar, "A Quiet Place" revisits the beautiful melodious approaches of The Colours of Music. It’s a soft melody with a dramatic crescendo endowed with a rich musicality where choirs, flutes, guitars and percussions embroider a rich musical setting. And this is one of the great qualities in Claudio Merlini's works. "Enchantment" is a beautiful example with its delicate shimmered arpeggios which awake singing winds. The intro is soft and tribal percussions brighten a fragile rhythm. Angelic choirs and celestial violins are wrapping this paradisiacal rhythm which rolls like a ball of silk under the warm winds of the Mediterranean Sea before it’s torn between a soft orchestral violence and a dreamy melody, a little as all that is hearing all over Enchantment. A delicious bass line crosses the winds of ether which make twinkling the carillons and "Faventibus Ventis" transport us in quite a different Claudio Merlini's universe. A sitar accompanies the delicate tams-tams which forge a fascinating procession through a strange musical mist where the breaths of flutes and plaintive sighs float with a scent of mystery on a title which distances itself, both by its approach and by its aura of mysticism. It’s very good and very mesmerizing. "In the Air" is a soft melody which swirls in a cloud of voices and flutes on a changeable rhythm. If the intro is smooth with shimmering and dreamy arpeggios, the rhythm becomes tangled with a livelier approach in the second half.
More incisive, the melodious approach of "Frozen Light" transports us in the territories of Enigma where tribal essences are next to ethereal ambiances. The rhythm is framed by good percussions and by fine sequences while the ambiances are drawn by suave vocalizes, a little as with "Karma" which is on the other hand softer and more oniric. The breaths of flutes and choirs which roam on percussions with felted knocks and violins of mist are adding a poignant dimension to "Masquerade Girl", another meditative title with a melancholic zest to decorate Enchantment. For a short title, "Inner Spirit" roams on several crossed rhythms. Rhythms of the world built over a sequential structure which undulates like a floating carpet whereas percussions and fierce bass are scraping the homogeneity on a melody lulled by a synth which extirpates its vocalizes and orchestral arrangements with a beautiful sensibility. "Float in the Dark" is a title which navigates between melody and ballad in a somber sieved ambiance that tribal percussions carry at end’s of balanced strikings. Here, as in the great majority of Enchantment’s titles, Claudio Merlini exploits with dexterity the fusion of voices and flutes on good orchestral arrangements, giving a very melodious and musical dimension to his approach New Age. "Magic Sleigh Ride" is another very good melody where arpeggios to tones of harps flow on a bed of violins and enchanted choirs. Notes of misled pianos come to caress the soft melancholy of this title which gradually metamorphoses into a little more joyful ballad. "Book of Memories" is as much effective as "Portraits", while "The Tower" encloses Enchantment with a very strong title where percussions and sequences swirl on an at the same time stormy and melodious structure. A structure which collects the big harmonious influences of this Claudio Merlini's last opus. The album contains 2 mixes of the title track Enchantment. "Enchantment Power Mix" bangs with a heavy and pulsating rhythm of dance floor, while "Enchantment DW Summer Club Mix" is really magnetic with a hammering rhythm. Festive rhythms which clash of this New Age and Easy Listening envelope of Enchantment but which preserves all of its melodious aura.
Once again Claudio Merlini built a harmonious album where soft rhythms are anchored into very nice melodies. The synth man from Italia knows how to weave nice and catchy melody that hangs in the soul as in the heart on smooth rhythms. And that’s the story of Enchantment; 14 titles that are linked together in a very good tapestry of New Age and Easy Listening where influences of Enigma and modern Tangerine Dream go beyond the stories of The Colours of Music which too was a nice album of its kind.
Sylvain Lupari (2012)

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