mercredi 21 novembre 2012

['ramp]: astral disaster (2012)

“Astral Disaster is an electronic feast where Stephen Parsick's passion for the art transcends the heart of his influences”
First Set - Flatten Them! (37:55)
1 Forever Returning 7:15
2 Blast 11:08
3 Rather Far Out 5:51
4 Halo Inductor 13:41
Second Set - Doomsday Is Family Time (38:32)
5 The Nameless is the Origin 9:30
6 Oscillator Planet 5:20
7 Astral Disaster 8:03
8 Jericho 15:39

DOOMBIENT.MUSIC |  ramp009 (CD 76:27) *****
Chthonian choruses breathing in the vestiges of a fallen society, heavy reverberations floating as a smell of death on ambivalent rhythms and devilish pulsations of machinery moulding some indistinct paces; such are the sound elements that decorate the mephistophelic universe of ['ramp]. Recorded in concert at the Bochum Planetarium, “Astral Disaster” continues on the stride undertaken by Stephen Parsick with his powerful Steel and Steam and Return; two albums which appear in my 2011's Top 10. Well sit behind his range of synths and analog electronic equipments, the German synthesist weaves the main lines of a black Mass which makes shiver and moan the most unbelieving of ears, so much that's powerful, so much that's ... powerful!
"Flatten Them!" starts this ['ramp] live performance by a distant dying wind which divides its decline in order to free a series of pantings which swirl like some oblong apocalyptic lassoes. "Forever Returning" plunges us straight away into the somber and theatrical luciferian universe of Stephen Parsick. This track (stemming from Return)
is a slow non-rhythmic procession painted by dark waves and breezes of satanic machineries which float in a darkness of which the opacity is slightly perturbed by a chain of bright hoops which stream over a flood of souls mooing reverberating sighs. These hoops ululate of a contrasting transparency while the breaths of machines continue their slow hammerings up until the heavy pulsations of "Blast". And quietly a rhythm settles down. A rhythm, as heavy as slow, with heavy resonant pulsations that have difficulty in getting rid of the hold of the chthonian choirs. A line of sequences appears, making swirl its chords which flutter with fright while that the heavy pulsations increase the pace, pushing "Blast" towards an intense unsteady gait. A bewitching mephistophelic melody is clearing a harmonic way between these two convoluted movements of which the paradoxes will sow a superb cacophony, as harmonious as rhythmic, that will drive us to the temples of "Rather Far Out" and of its fallen angels who cling to timeless lanes. Flickering sequences are emerging a little after two minutes, drawing crisscrossed loops which flutter in the depths of some loud infernal mooing. This shaky irrational rhythm swirls with fury in a distraught spiral from where are escaping the bits of an abstract melody which separates the rhythm of the non- rhythm in a strange ballet for gnomes to the wings of fireflies. "Halo Inductor" spreads its fragile rhythm with fine keys which dance on the ashes of "Rather Far Out". Delicate, this rhythm remains uncertain. It makes its sequences of black glasses skip on a field of ochred mist where angelic choirs sigh out of tune all over this setting of electronic cataclysm. Swirling in a harmonious carousel, propelled by spasms of discreet machinery, "Halo Inductor" waltzes with the nobility of its oniric blackness. No kicks. Just a delicate rhythm which flutters on the spot, encircled by a chain of keys which sparkle in a parallel universe where the stupefying seraphic choruses lead it to its last beating in a serene finale to make dream the most of the rebel souls.
Quieter, the 2nd half of “Astral Disaster” ("Doomsday Is Family Time") is a long suite of dark breaths, oscillating waves and electronic tones drawn from the cavern of the VCS-3 and in wires of Mellotron as black as musical. It's a return in time when the floating and psychedelicosmic ambiences collect in their tones some rangy ectoplasmic lamentations, resuscitating recollections of Pink Floyd on Echoes and Ummagumma as well as the first experimental works of Tangerine Dream on Zeit and Atem. Thus "The Nameless is the Origin" and "Oscillator Planet" are moving forward as spectres crossing the deserts of Doomstown up until the powerful "Astral Disaster" (from the Return album) which spreads its slow vampiric veils on this very dark and ambient portion of this concert under the stars of the Bochum planetarium. As heavy and booming than "Blast", "Jericho" concludes this last opus of ['ramp] with a characteristic approach of the slow but powerful rhythms which mark out Stephen Parsick's works. Halfway between the aphrodisiac heavinesses of Redshift and the staggering rhythms of Arc, "Jericho" strikes hard the neighbouring walls with dazzling resounding heavinesses in which the echoes are wrapped up by choruses to hybrid singings and Mellotron mists before bursting of all its power in a stormy finale. Ears won’t hold the time in headphones...but one ask for more.
Arc, Redshift  and ['ramp] are the standard bearers of a genre that few dare to approach so much the risks of losing the listener in boredom are immense. Except that one gets bored at all, from it. “Astral Disaster” is an electronic feast where Stephen Parsick's passion for the art transcends the heart of his influences. It's a powerful album among which every detail and every line are carefully declutter then replaced in an impressive collage of structures which breathes the beauty of its mephistophelic magnetism. It's a bewitching work. Extremely bewitching, where the rhythms and ambiences are melting into a splendid electronic symphony sculptured in DoomHell's coat of arms. To add to the collection of Debris, Steel and Steam and Return …and hurry up, it's available in a limited edition of 300 numbered copies.

Sylvain Lupari (November 21th, 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=15697

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