mardi 30 octobre 2012

KIKAI: Labor (2011)

“Kiki's Labor is an album filled by soft rhythms à la Software which are trapped by the cosmic fragrances of Jean Michel Jarre”

1 Past (5:29)
2 Hope (4:36)
3 Chant (4:18)
4 Thunder and Love (5:14)
5 Wish (5:57)
6 Transparent Dreams (5:46)
7 Turn (5:19)
8 Seahorses (8:08)
9 Winter (7:48)
10 Decent (4:22)
11 Gates (6:39)
12 Relief (Tribute to Japan) (6:50)
13 Tribute to Japan (5:07)

SYNGATE |CD-R KI01 (CD-R 73:50) ***½

Kikai, for ocean of energy, is Marius C. Hammerich's musical project that seems strongly inspired by the Teutonic tempos of Software and the intergalactic atmospheres of Jean MichelJ arre. And Kikai is not exactly a new player in the chessboard of modern EM. It's since 2005 that Marius C. Hammerich composes an EM which serves the cause of humanitarian works. Distributed by the independent label Kikai Kigalu, his music is also available on several download platforms and the profits go to various charitable works. “Labor” is his first album on a major label (Syngate) and contains a variety of melodies well camped into approaches of New Berlin School of the 80's with light and lively rhythms which go alongside to cosmic atmospheres.
It's exactly with these electronic cosmic tones, shaped in the memories of the galactic works of Software, that "Past" titillates our eardrums. The rhythm is fluid and hangs onto sober percussions which mislay their strikings with the jumps of crystal clear sequences. The rhythmic universe of Kikai abounds with tones which excite the hearing. Here it's tones of duck which cackle softly, adding a psychotronic depth to a soft lunar down-tempo where lives a soft melodious approach decorated by solos of which the cosmic charms float on a bed of sequences and percussions with strikings and tones as varied as arrhythmic. "Hope" is more experimental with very ethereal atmospheric approach. A soft piano shells its notes in an ambience congealed into heterogeneous tones where synths moan like badly caressed guitars, merging their abandons in a beautiful morphic melody which blows its charms on a bed of riffs and sequence teeming with a parallel rhythmic life. "Chant" follows the harmonious bow of "Hope". The synth divides its wandering melodies in rich angelic reedy voices which chant on a tempo the movements of which have difficulty in swirling in a broth of cosmic effects à la Jarre. Morphic and carouselic, "Thunder and Love" makes swirl its delicate rhythmic riffs into vapors of ether. Schemer with its breaths of perditions and its voices which harass the peace of mind, the synth instils to this track, as well as on the entire “Labor”, a fascinating cosmic/poetic aura which bewitches with its very Jarrish influences and tones. "Wish" amazes with its sequences in tones of peak-wood knocks which lets off steam on hollow wood. The rhythm is strange. It clicks from everywhere, gauging the shape to take with muffled pulsations to glaucous reverberations. One would say a somber hesitating walking by a Halloween evening with imperfect leaps which zigzag in wide semicircles beneath some not really inviting solos. It's a very good track of atmosphere that manages to collect its sequences and pulsations in order to mold a more coherent rhythm. To listen to at good volume and earphones to seize the full dimension of it.
"Transparent Dreams" pursues this dissection of Jarre's cosmic influences with tones of extraterrestrials and voices of outer-space which murmur in an absolute void. The rhythm unfolds vaguely with a good bass line of which the resounding notes get mold subtly to the meshes of a sequence to progressive rhythm. The solos have difficulty in piercing all of this sound opacity. The screams get lost in the mists of Orion, preventing a latent rhythm from blooming, quite as in the very magnetic "Seahorses"; a long morphic and seraphic ballet that has difficulty in climbing its intense cosmic veil. "Turn" bathes in an intense melancholic broth with a furtive rhythmic approach which floods its uncertain sequences in of tearful strata of a synth to orchestral tears. Another harmonious phase gets free of this influence of sadness with sequences which click in the winds of the weeping solos. And the more it goes and the more it's heart-rending. Totally atmospheric "Winter" scatters its weak pulsations, its futuristic beeps and its riffs into the psychotronic lavas of a synth to lamentations and coils as much ghostly as wintry. Concerto for voice mislaid in a rhythm in perdition, "Decent" shelters its slow harmonies which drag like lost souls. The contrast of tones and rhythms is quite bewitching. "Gates" plunges us into the Teutonic rhythms of Software with a chain of sequences which swirls into a hypnotic glass carousel rolling under a sky blocked by dense layers of a synth of which the twisted solos are unfolding on percussions which abandon their sober strikings to become, knocks by knocks, stormier. "Relief (Tribute to Japan)" offers an approach tinted by sadness with ghostly sequences which roam with a fear of disturbing. Bubbles of water explode here and there, bringing a dimension of video game to a title which quietly goes out of its melancholic embryo to offer a soft electronic ballad where some echoing riffs are waltzing in the perfumes of exhilarating solos to the nostalgic tints. Oceanic waves, funeral bells and audio reports furnish the apocalyptic decoration of "Tribute to Japan" which parades in our ears like a cloud of sadness on a land for ever broken.
Soft melodies which flow on light rhythms, “Labor” is a beautiful album of an EM which will please undoubtedly the fans of Software and its post Chip-Meditation era. Marius C. Hammerich excels at the art to surround his compositions of a sound fauna that makes ears open wide. It's beautiful and catchy with an only drawback; the titles end in a sometimes too abrupt fade out. So what makes the charm of earphones in fact also an annoyance that can also upset certain ears …

Sylvain Lupari (October 29th 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=15632

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