dimanche 27 avril 2014

TANGERINE DREAM: Chandra: Phantom Ferry Part I (2009)

“Chandra: Phantom Ferry-Part I is a nice album but I was expecting much more. But isn't what we all hoped from years?”
1 Approaching Greenland at 7 PM 7:49 
2 The Moondog Connection 3:59 
3 Screaming of the Dreamless Sleeper 6:56 
4 The Unknown is the Truth 7:31 
5 The Dance Without Dancers 5:41 
6 Child Lost in Wilderness 7:07 
7 Sailor of the Lost Arch 7:53 
8 Verses of a Sisong 7:37 
9 Silence on a Crawler Lane 4:05

Eastgate ‎| 037 CD (CD 58:39) ***½
(E-rock with a zest of pop, dark ambient and New Age)
It's of a frenzied and hyper ventilated way that opens this fascinating musical story based on a manuscript found in a military camp of Greenland, near Thule. A fictitious story where the Carlos character meets a strange entity which seems to know more on him than himself. This is a beautiful basic idea which is spread out over 9 very distinct pieces of music, from where the feeling of unlikelihood in order to create a musical story which wants to be at the height of its so surprising outcomes. Alone, Edgar Froese seems to be afraid of creating. He is lacking of inspiration, boldness and originality. Becoming then predictable, even boring by moments. Nevertheless the story of “Chandra: Phantom Ferry-Part I” seems to have an interesting musical reach for EM; a musical art which has the advantage of becoming theatrical, filmic with a pleiad of instruments able concoct a whole range of possibilities. But Edgar never touches upon this interesting possibility. Our silver fox is very drab, colourless. Not that “Chandra: Phantom Ferry-Part I” is that boring, far from it. It's a beautiful opus, but the boldness of its story is missing.
With "Approaching Greenland at 7 PM", it's clear that it sounds like a wild race. The rhythm is nervous, jerky and runs on a bass line which espouses the shade of sequences spread like keen knocks of percussions. This is a good track. A good enter with moves of funk and with sequential variances coated by fine Tangetized layers. Imho, it's too short and a real kicker. "The Moondog Connection" spits a somber sensibility with a smooth play of synth from which the lines waves in loops and a discreet mellotron are filtering harmonies through some reverberating mist.
Edgar spices the whole thing of tuneful scattered chords which decorate this soft melody of a dark greyness that continues up until "Screaming of the Dreamless Sleeper"; a black title, but without souls with these vocalizes tinted of false feelings which glean here and there on a rhythmic progress which is lacking creativity. This track is so much sounding like the repertoire of the Melrose years and seems to be way out of this work of fiction, just like "Child Lost in Wilderness" and its choirs obscured by a so fade poetic approach. Not bad, but we speak about Froese and TD here. "The Unknown is the Truth" starts with a black linear wave blown by sonic arches tinted of blowpipes. This is an intro vaporously original which switches mood for a more nervous pace, seasoned of delicious crystal clear arpeggios which float in this universe closer of chaos than of harmony. The rhythm there is sluggish and stumbles into hallucinogenic psychotronic limbos which recall the first artistic gaps of the Dream. I liked it. It's a very good track which releases an abyssal mood where the remorse shows up in all the hidden recesses. Synth with intriguing laments, fluty and discreet mellotron with arrangements of a sadness to graze the soul; "The Dance without Dancers" is a baroque black ballet which spins in a bitterness subdued of a fragile hope. I think it's a very nice track which calls back the period of Legend. "Sailor of the Lost Arch" is a beautiful ballad taken from a New Age soil. It flows well, but we are far from a well structured EM, even if Edgar adds his heterogeneous tones. And the more we progress and the more we fall in a kind of musical easiness. Melancholic themes which repeat and which only have by tasteless synth lines which glean here and there, making believe in any emotional evolution while that everything sounds so much like old rehashed.
All and all, “Chandra: Phantom Ferry-Part I” is a nice album but I was expecting much more. But isn't what we all hoped from years? An unequal album where some pretty good music parts are getting lost in pretty poor and weak moments. Moments and tracks which show all the difficulty of
Edgar to surpass himself. Edgar is getting old and becomes very gloomy. And this gloom perspires on this album where the rhythms and ambiences have difficulty to find original forms. It's good and it listens pretty well, but something is missing there.

Sylvain Lupari (Originally wrote on November 9th, 2009 and translated on April 26th, 2014)
gutsofdarkness.com & synthsequences.blogspot.ca

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