1 Sunlight Reflections 9:52
2 Stardancer 7:12
3 Tranceflight 9:22
4 Rotations 4:33
5 There's Nothing like the Sun 7:40
6 Spacerider 5:00
7 Lights of the Universe 14:15
8 Lunar Habitat 5:54
9 Up up to the Sky 6:08
SynGate|CD-rRT02 (DDL 69:56) ****
(Ambient and kind of prog New Berlin School)
Reissued in the same stride as Journey into Space, and following the success of Solar Walk among the fans of New Berlin School who dreamed on the music of Software, “Lights of the Universe” is the 2nd album of Realtime. Also recorded and released on the SynGate label about three years after Journey into Space, this 3rd life of “Lights of the Universe” (2007 and 2010), which is also only available as a digital release on the Bandcamp page of SynGate, comes too with a new remastered, including 2 bonus tracks, and always offers these attractive figures of rhythms, as melodious as lively, which are the cornerstone of Realtime's musical universe. I do believe that it is a good initiative of the band and of SynGate if we consider the success of Solar Walk and that these first two albums of the musical project from Thomas Bock and Norbert Hensellek were all sold out a little time after their releases.
A choir of angelic voices gets mix to glistening synth lines to open the first seconds of "Sunlight Reflections" which offers its rich ambient intro to a filet of sequence weaved by uncertain circular beatings. These jumping ions, dancing in an imperfect spheroidal figure, escape the lack of coordination of the main line to force a movement of upward ritornello from which the minimalist circles grow rich of their shadows which hiccup with a light movement of delay. One of the big charms of Realtime is this way that the duet embroiders their ambient rhythms with sequences which are subdivided to create two lines, sometimes even three lines, of adjacent rhythms which follow each other or stick or yet dissociate themselves just with a little of delay in their beatings. And when some light strikings of percussions pepper the whole thing, it gives rhythms as fascinating as attractive. These sequences and percussions are the strength of the duo Bock/Hensellek. So much that we forget the impact of the synths which are real machines diffuser of thick clouds of mist, as cosmic as mystic, which grasp this swarm of hypnotic rhythms. We also forget solos and cybernetic dialects. Like on "Stardancer", as well as on the kind of ambient techno that is "Tranceflight", where the heavy rotatory rhythms offer their ions and their syncopated copies to synth lines more musical. Synth lines to the industrialized perfumes which drop some rather robotics harmonies and where the influences of Vangelis get lost in the boldnesses of Banfi, as in "Tranceflight" and its long sinuous and nasal solos, and brief laments stridencies of which roam and swirl around the very vaporous narrations of Thorsten Sudler-Mainz (Art Of Infinity and Deep Imagination) on "Stardancer".
The latter also lends his very hollow voice on the somber "There's Nothing like the Sun", whose jerked and dreamer structure is similar to the one "Stardancer", as well as on the title-track. The short "Rotations" offers a variance in the harmonies with a beautiful line of flute which sings on a kind of cosmic tom-toms pattern. "Spacerider" does honor to its naming by a movement of sequences which adopts literally the trots of a horse. The knocks of percussions act as whip lashes and fire a pace which gets livelier and livelier. The synths are drawing some floating waves, whose spectral singings are staging a real horse ride in a cosmic desert. This track sticks to the ear straight away, contrary to the title-track which proposes a more complex structure with ions which bounce of their jerky promptness in the abstract harmonies which are bewitching souvenirs of Baffo Banfi's Daliesque universe. "Lights of the Universe" may need more than one listening and you will get caught because each new listening demands for another one! "Lunar Habitat" and "Up up to the Sky" are the two bonus tracks which come with this digital download release. Both tracks oscillate between the both universes of Solar Walk and “Lights of the Universe”. If "Lunar Habitat" offers a kind of ambient bolero with a delicate sequenced velocity, "Up up to the Sky" proposes a livelier rhythm, although always rather ambient, where the ions always dance with their shadows under a sky painted of astral luminosities.
I like the music of Realtime, whose minimalist rhythms remind me of a very ethereal Kraftwerk's lunatic dance. It's easy, simple, beautiful and properly done. Certainly that their structures of rhythms seem to be a multiplicity of a kind which is alike in each track, except that the fine and subtle nuances, as well as a more audacious use of the synths, compared to Journey into Space, leads us towards spheres until then unsuspected of the German duet. These new reissues, in digital download format, from the SynGate label are mainly intended to those who liked the Teutonic rhythms of the 80's which are soaked by orchestral and cosmic synth pads a la Software. Software, Kraftwerk, Jarre, Gottsching and Banfi are so many perfumes of reminiscences that will fill the ears of those who have succumb to those first 2 works of Realtime. You have enjoyed Solar Walk? Well, Journey into Space and “Lights of the Universe” are then true values for your wallet and purse.
Here is a link for a video trailer of this album: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nTOHDzHuBTc
Sylvain Lupari (July 10th, 2014)
Cette chronique est également 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=17217