mardi 3 juillet 2012

RENÉ SPLINTER: Singularities (2012)

"Singularities is a good album filled by rhythms and ambiences of Tangerine Dream that René Splinter composed with a surprising dexterity"

1 Singularities 15:06
2 Lucid Dreaming 8:37
3 The Time Traveler 6:07
4 Timescapes 12:28
5 Lemniscate 7:31
6 Before Babel 3:31
7 The Lighthouse 7:42

GROOVE: GR-188 (CD 61:02)

A breeze tainted by hoarse voices, floating in the groove of the resonance of a unique note of piano which falls heavily, opens the surprising universe of Singularities. Surprising because René Splinter plunges in the musical waters of Tangerine Dream and the Schmoelling years with a disconcerting ease. A little as if he had been a ghost member of Tangerine Dream, the Dutch synthesist succeeds a surprising tour de force by almost persuading us that we listen to through Singularities an album of the Dream forgotten in the recording sessions of the years Virgin.
The hoarse voices of the title-track are blending into a beautiful synth line from which the iridescent breaths glitter among silvered reflections to merge to the keyboard keys which embroider a melody roaming in the uncertainty. Slow, the intro of "Singularities" stretches its oniricity with sweet angelic vocalizes which hum in chimed dusts, weaving a delicious morphic hymn which gets lost in a metallic crescendo. The waltz of sequences begins after the 6th minute. They hatch from a methodical pulsation to zigzag in parallel lines and cross the first percussions whilst that some keys are drawing a melodious approach coated by orgasmic choirs. And it's quite a whole musical cocktail that René Splinter composes for our ears. Between Stuntman (Edgar Froese), Pink Floyd (Animals), White Eagle and Hyperborea, the title-track of Singularities seems to be drawn from the vaults of his influences. The knocks of cymbals, the criss-crossed sequences, the metallic percussions, the echoing riffs, the synth which coos with a fine harmonious approach, the choirs as well the increasing as decreasing rhythms; all that composes Singularities, as its title-track is weaved in those Franke, Froese and Schmoelling years and "Singularities" is a pure marvel which gives the start to an album that will amaze more than one fan of Tangerine Dream, both at the level of tone and musical structures. "Lucid Dreaming" continues in the same vein with a title built on a nervous and spasmodic rhythm which hiccups on a structure forged in the heart of Mojave Desert and No Man's Land. The musical illusion is perfect. One would believe to hear the mythical German trio offering us another surprise à la Silver Scale while "The Time Traveler" is a beautiful melody weaved into nice pads of a very harmonious synth that some sober percussions support of a rhythm worthy of albums such as Risky Business or Firestarter.
Speaking about those two soundtracks, the sequences of "Timescapes" are plunging us there irreparably with keys which skip in the shadow of their rotations to create an oblong minimalist rhythm. A rhythm embroidered by brisk and jerky chords, like in Risky Business or Firestarter, which zigzags with subtle nuances in its evolution and where a synth as harmonious as Johannes Schmoelling's is covering of fluty harmonies and ethereal pads. It’s quite beautiful but a little bit long. The influence of Schmoelling blows a lot in the shadows of Singularities. Somber and melancholic "Before Babel" is a faithful reflection with its solitary piano which roams on the plains of a devastated land. It’s as much beautiful as it can be that dark! And "The Lighthouse" is a track torn between its balladesc approach and its static rhythm fed by knocks of the notes of a piano which misleads its harmonies in the whirlwinds of a synth to breaths and heart-rending solos. The limpid keys of a harmonic sequencer alternate in a very beautiful fluidity and "Lemniscate" is unfolding around a muffled pulsation, molding a furtive rhythm which espouses a minimalist spiral filled by parallel tributaries. A rhythm which explodes in the 2nd part, to borrow a more electronic rock tangent. Here, as everywhere in this 3rd opus of Splinter, the synth throws some pads filled by scents of metallic voices which are melting into soloing forms and slightly spectral breaths, creating a fascinating melodious universe. Musical elements which wear the print of Tangerine Dream, both on White Eagle and Hyperborea.
A little as in Almery, René Splinter offers us a good album filled by rhythms and ambiences of Tangerine Dream. Always so far from content to copy the heart of his influences, the Dutch synthesist digs into the hidden recesses abandoned by the Dream to offer nice tracks that a lot of people would have liked to hear after the Virgin era of the mythical German trio. And Singularities is a balm for those who, as me, dreamed about a possible reunion of Franke/Froese/Schmoelling that René Splinter virtualizes with a surprising dexterity.

Sylvain Lupari (July 3rd, 2012)
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 view some videos, you can visit his website:

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