mercredi 1 janvier 2020

SYNTH&SEQUENCES keeps moving

Dear readers and followers, I want to thank you warmly for this massive support of you in the evolution of my Blog Synth & Sequences. Unfortunatly, du to the fact that it has a lot of stuff and a long list of artist whose music is reviewed here, I have to move this Blog to a more convivial way to read it and to find reviews. So it's the main cause of why this Blog is switching for a real website.

Now SynthSequences will need a new way to search from you, but you will see the differences between it and this Blog Please take to time to dig it will continue to read here. But you will remark that reviews will diseapper and reappear on the new website. Allready, more than 235 reviews have been removed and put on my new website.

I hate to do this, but this site cost me an average of 500$ a year. This is the reason you see the Donate sign. It's not an obligation for anyone, and it will be remove once this amount is reached each year.

Thanks and advance and long live to Electronic Music :D

Sylvain Lupari

dimanche 2 juin 2013

KELLER & SCHONWALDER: The Reason Why… Live At The Jodrell Bank (2000/2013)

“There is not a single second of lost in The Reason Why… Live At The Jodrell Bank which, I do believe, is what we can call a timeless album”

CD 1 (Live 2000)
1 Live at Jodrell Bank 45:22
a Mysterious Sounds (6:52)   b Space (10:22)  
c Firewalker (21:31)   d Shadows (6:35)  
2 Beyond the Sea 21:37  
3 Tempus Fugit 7:11

CD 2 (Live 2001)
4 Da Capo 31:24  
5 Tanz Der Elfen 22:24  
6 Chill Out 18:48

SynGate |2 CD-R MRX3 (CD-r 146:54) *****
(Typical Berlin School EM)
The first presence of Detlev Keller & Mario Schönwälder at the famous evenings of EM held in Leicester's Jodrell Bank in England was described for a long time as the best performance from the German duet and also as one of the most striking one within the framework of these evenings produced by Dave Law, one of England EM pioneers. Two albums came out of this live event; The Reason Why Part One (in 2000 on Manikin ¦ MRCD 7050) and The Reason Why Part Two (in 2001 on Manikin ¦ MRCD 7057). And as time passes by, they became out of printed for ages. Faithful to its habits to resuscitate the striking works in the history of contemporary EM, regarding the catalogs its artists, the German label SynGate makes be reborn both albums under a double CD package entitled “The Reason Why… Live At The Jodrell Bank”. A very beautiful initiative because the MP3 version that Synth Music Direct had put on sale in 2006 had left to me a bitter taste. A taste now forgotten because “The Reason Why… Live At The Jodrell Bank” is by far one of the most seducing works that Detlev Keller & Mario Schönwälder signed at the dawn of 2000's.
Originally divided into 5 parts "Live at Jodrell Bank" begins this journey in time with synth waves floating among some NASA samplings. And it's not because it's ambient that it's deprived of interests. The intro floats with its double synth layers among intergalactic chirpings. Joined by a beautiful line of dreamy flute, the ballet of morphic lines spreads its aura of mysticism until that the intro is diving into a phase of dialect of the synths. And the heat floods the space with floating choirs which hum into sibylline mists, ending thus the first 17 minutes of an intro that we didn't hear passed. And the sequences arrive. Pressed that they are by a very Dreamian. approach, the listener feels reliving the memories Encore with these plump keys which sparkle with resonances, they tumble down real fast from cosmos. The rhythm that they forge is weak. Sometimes wild, sometimes balanced and sometimes stationary, it fills up us the ears of an unknown ferocity while the breaths of symphonic synths and the chthonian choirs drag us into the dark meanders of Tangerine Dream. Only the disgorged keys, and those more limpid which dance with desperation, bring us back to the reality of Keller & Schönwälder. And there, the anger of the synths springs out with Babylonian mooings that some fluty winds try to calm, while that subtly "Live at Jodrell Bank" go astray in the high spheres of Klaus Schulze. And this my friends, that's worth the purchase of the CD because the next minutes will be not only infernal but they will feed us of a stunning symbiosis between the differences of the big names of vintage EM; Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze. To me, that is something that I never heard with such precision so far. The hot twisted solos spit an electronic dialect on a rhythm supported by these pulsing keys of which the parallel lines are never in concordance. And "Live at Jodrell Bank" to rage in a furious structure of rhythm for about 30 minutes. Wild and complex rhythm which increases by a notch to regular interval to finally return its sequences at around the 40th minute, where this powerful magic moment stops into some iridescent mists. Powerful, magical and absolutely delirious! It's in the confusion of fluty lines, dark and tenebrous layers of the organs that the ambient intro of "Beyond the Sea", the 2nd encore of this concert, gets to our ears. Some furtive sequencer keys sculpture a curt rhythm which does Tango on a structure of rhythm crushed by the thunders. Keller & Schönwälder is kissing this hesitating rhythm with a panoply of lines in tones as much dark than harmonious with fluty lines and gloomy choirs which hum on delicate piano music scores. We feel that the concert coming to its end because the duet offers more quiet tracks, as to chase away the devils that poke the feet of the spectators always starved. "Tempus Fugit" closed this concert with a black and very ambient track where lines of cathedrals' old organs flood our ears. Playing on nuances and tones, the duet exploits the side dark of the organs with such a dexterity that will lead the fans to the exit. It was effectively a last encore.
Carillons ringing into seraphic winds open "Da Capo". This track which had followed the powerful "Live at Jodrell Bank" proposes an intro of ambience with synth lines filled of cooings solos and other lines to orchestral perfumes which glance through these ringings of silvery prisms which little by little form a strange jerked rhythm. A skeletal rhythm in the colors of prism which gallops awkwardly beneath some striations a bit abstruse. A line of bass sequence binds itself to this rhythm. Making wave its keys it gives more depth and nuance to a rhythm which shines with its polyhedral glitter. The jingles of cymbals sing under the azure mists while that Keller's piano spreads a melody which will split up its beauty throughout "Da Capo" which continues its shopping of tones and percussions to offer a pure rhythm which skips and hiccups under the assaults of a synth and of its efficient solos, chthonian mists and seraphic pads. Recorded at a concert in Lüdenscheid, "Tanz Der Elfen" proposes a minimalist structure slightly comparable to "Da Capo". The first part is very hypnotic with its chords which pile up into fast pas-de-deux, shaping a hopping rhythm which stores the adjacent pulsations. The harmonious envelope is fed by lines of synth with orchestral fragrances, fluty lines a bit breathless and gleaming arpeggios which sparkle here and there. It's fascinating to hear the track evolution which shows its nuances sparingly, fleshing out even more its imprint of hypnotism. And after a heavy foggy passage, the second part of "Tanz Der Elfen" assaults our eardrums with more precision in the sequencing which flows with more fluidity. The rhythm became then wilder; "Tanz Der Elfen" debauches the shyness of synths and sequencers by diving into a universe of organic percussions, sequences and jingles of which the sound beauty is supported by a stubborn rhythm. A rhythm which pushes of its two bordering phases a pace bitten by a synth which makes breathless its jerked harmonies of bluish mists and which uncovers its twisted solos of which the appearances of hoarse voices sow a confusion deserving of a structure as well intelligent than interesting. This is a great track and I would have loved to hear the whole of it. "Chill Out" was played in concert at Kassel. As its naming indicates, it's a kind of relax track with a soft rhythm structured on sequences which pound with a cybernetic symmetry to which are added heavy pulsations which roam under synth lines multi layered in their harmonies, their singings and dialogues, their vampiric solos and their sibylline mists.
Can we make new out of old? It seems like yes. In spite of 12 years which separate this live performance of Keller & Schönwälder from all the typical works of minimalist Berlin School, where artists' tens, and very good believe me, have walked on the musical imprints of the Berlin duet, which influenced as much artists as TD and/or Klaus Schulze did, “The Reason Why… Live At The Jodrell Bank” still breathes of its originality. There is not a single second of lost in this immense work which doesn't stop offering structures at which the fine variances amaze once they came after one to another. Then we say ourselves; hum ...what did I missed? And we listen again and we say ourselves; ha … brilliant! I imagine that's what a timeless work is. Inescapable!

Sylvain Lupari (June 2nd, 2013)

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=16121

mardi 21 mai 2013

BILL ANSCHELL: Impulses (2013)

“Impulses is a musical rendezvous filled with an eclecticism of the genres and where the jazz thrones on structures sometimes honeyed and sometimes strangely aggressive”
1 Wild Mushroom 3:44  
2 Gridlock 5:09  
3 In the Soup 5:18
4 For Ranga 2:11
5 The Lone Beacon 6:46
6 Mustang Sally (Mark Rice) 6:23
7 Shifting Gears 2:47
8 Le Goggier 4:24
9 The Seed 4:35
10 Amadinda Groove 2:30
11 Naima (John Coltrane) 5:12
12 Not Under My Watch 7:58

Blow Hard Music 101 (CD 56:55) ***½ (E-Jazz)
Talking about electronic jazz? Why not! I do believe that's necessary to open our portal of perceptions to all kinds...well, more or less. And I have to tell you guys that I didn't dislike. “Impulses” is Bill Anschell's 5th album. The man is jazz pianist who rolls his bump since the beginning of the 80's. His last album is a musical rendezvous filled with an eclecticism of the genres and where the jazz thrones on structures sometimes honeyed and sometimes strangely aggressive. The 12 structures find their strength in a skillful meshing of pulsations and percussions with compulsive beatings and rolling, pulsations and organic riffs which outdistance the work from a simple album of jazz which however preserve its acid tints. Here's a review about an album of electronic jazz by someone who knows nothing about jazz but loves EM.
And it is softly that Bill Anschell tries to cajole the listeners to his style which rocks them by diversities. Leaned on notes of a pensive piano which roll in a minimalist melodic pattern, "Wild Mushroom" is a nice e-ballad. A kind of lunar down-tempo where some penetrating synth blows in the tones of melancholic jazz sing on a meshing of sedentary pulsations/percussions and on smooth chords of glass which are ringing for a secondary melody. "Gridlock" is very near the phases of Herbie Hancock's androids dance with a broken rhythm which hangs on to some percussions rolling. The musical envelope is as well rich as puzzling with a crowd of tones, as organic than electronic, where the debauchery of sounds brings us to another level. Lost chords roam in this mishmash of typist’s kind of percussions, floating as white shadows on a structure which is so closer of some jazzy psychedelic break-dance. I like it because that's very particular and that reminds me the years of madnesses of Bill Nelson on Red Noise, without the voices of course. "In the Soup" is a nice track all in contrast with its percussions which run wild such as some xylophone keys on acid, breaking the delicate morphic approach of a contemplative melody which auscultates our ears with lamentations eaten away by regret. I don't know jazz enough to peel the genres but let's say that "For Ranga" is more of an acid kind with a sound whirlwind as lively as melodious. "The Lone Beacon" is a superb track with a long mesmerizing structure which undulates like sea waves enlightened by a burning sunset. The percussions borrow some Caribbean airs while the synth waves, like everywhere likewise on “Impulses”, are dragging their melancholies like some breaths lost in the stratosphere. It's very beautiful.
"Mustang Sally", from Mark Rice, is a very aggressive, untidy track where the rhythm is rough draft and sat on a meshing of pulsations/percussions and organic lamentations. A rhythm articulated by brief jerks and kicks of percussions while the big pads of organs bicker with some floating and rather incisive solos of guitars, feeding an atmosphere of the most eclectic where the ambient moods, the prog rock and the jazz-rock live with a stunning symbiosis. After the innocent ritornello that is "Shifting Gears", which possesses quite a whole pattern of rhythm in the tribal tendencies, like on "For Ranga", "Le Goggier" borrows a texture of old jazz for carnivals with a structure of organic rhythm as strange as a music of fair where the acrobats roam through carousels and do tricks of cheap magic. "The Seed"? Hum...I have a little of difficulty with these turbulent rhythms which swirl in structures of acid-jazz, stopping to embrace an ethereal passage, or a wandering melody, to restart immediately of its stormy kicks. And nevertheless, there are beautiful fragments of melodies which cry in this envelope broken by its rhythm so much rebel than unpredictable. "Amadinda Groove" is a beautiful melody. It's a slow dance with fragrances of lounge where chords of e-piano adopt the rotation of percussions and the jingling which waddle among some galactic streaks, giving the track a lunar nuance. I like the version of John Coltrane's "Naima". The track evolves inside a harmonious envelope which is finely torn between its soft rhythm and its evanescent ballad. One could tell to listen to some very nice lunar jazz. "Not Under My Watch" is a track which is in the same vein as "Mustang Sally". The track offers a curt and edgy rhythm which explodes of the strikings from some unbridled percussions which blast such as fireworks exploding in a too high sky and which quiets down with some fragments of mislaid melodies. At both explosive and serene, it depicts marvellously the universe all in contradiction of the acid and progressive electronic jazz from “Impulses” which lost many of its electronic spirit in the 2nd part. I like it well. It's quite new to me and I would say that I will consume it in small doses, which is segment by segment with the 1st one for starter.

Sylvain Lupari (May 19th, 2013)
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=16100

dimanche 19 mai 2013

FANGER & SCHÖNWÄLDER: Analog Overdose 3 (2003)

“The presence of Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock brings to Analog Overdose 3 a rebel and untidy side which completes marvellously the electronic fluidity of Thomas Fanger and Mario Schönwälder”
1 Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part I 21:04
2 Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part II 14:04
3 Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part III 17:52
4 Bar Liquid (Encore) 19:57

Manikin Records MRCD 7067
SynGate|CD-RMR67 / 2012 (CD-r 73:04) ****
(Progressive Berlin School with a zest of groove/lounge)

Recorded live at the Satzvey Castle in 2003, this 3rd episode of the Analog Overdose series is an unaccustomed musical rendezvous. “Analog Overdose 3” is a fusion between the hypnotic and groovy rhythms of Fanger & Schönwälder and the psychedelico progressive structures of Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock. The album being out of print, SynGate took the helm by making it available in a cd-r format with a musical perfection proper to the German label which so invites you to a delicious mix with a stunning outcome.
A wave from a cinematographic synth spreads its philharmonic strata and its clouds of blue mists to guide "Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part I" towards a puny rhythm, articulated by riffs of sequences which sound like some soft wood or like knocks on downy anvils. It's a whole world of sequences which dance in our ears. Sequences in the varied tones of which the curt and jerked hits shape a dislocated rhythmic which dances within the cracklings of synths. Hypnotic and mesmerizing, the intro is melted with a muddled rhythm pierced of streaks and flew over by twisted solos. Not really atonal, nor really very rhythmical, "Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part I" takes more vigour with percussions which roll in an android walking among a thick cloud of jumping keys rolling as balls in an abacus and a carpet of balls on a conveyor, creating an effect of unique rhythmic echo to the movements of sequences from Fanger & Schönwälder. Even if the universe of the duet cogitates around these sequences, synths are not outdone as prove it these very beautiful solos, to tones of guitars, which cover the second phase of this spasmodic rhythm. "Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part II" adopts a pattern of funky jazz with crackling chords a bit organic which mould a rhythmic dialect of aliens in a background filled of some fragrances of the retro disco years. These chords to hybrid tones skip and cavort on this floating structure which finds its balance on some silky enveloping pads. The track exploits completely its 14 minutes to borrow a more avant-gardist phase, dissociating itself from this pattern of slow ambient dance tempo which, by moments, overturns into a lounge genre.
An air of carnival introduces "Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part III" with a structure of circular rhythm which spins without finding its nest. Swirling such as rhythmic lassoes, the movement is fluid and dribbled by jumpy sequences. A beautiful Mellotron layer and a mix of synth/guitar glance over this overture that we feel and that we guess frenzied. The percussions light a rhythm with a look of a free-jazz which struggles in a cacophony chewed on by riffs of guitars and sequences, inviting the electronic six-strings of Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock spat its acute streaks and its solos on the loops. The tempo works hard in this kind of fusion from the styles of Mind Over Matter, Manuel Göttsching (E2-E4) and Fanger & Schönwälder. And gradually the intensity gets out of breath and "Hall of the Bourbon Lillies Part III" embraces a more ambiospheric phase where the lamentations of the e-guitar are melting with tenderness on floating and suspended pads of a morphic synth. "Bar Liquid (Encore)" is dynamite. It's the perfect fusion between Fanger & Schönwälder and Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock. The rhythm is fine and hatched by riffs of sequences which hiccup in the delicate frenzy of the bongo style percussions. The harmonious envelope is weaved in layers of a synth with paradisiacal breaths and the lamentations of a guitar that the leader of Mind Over Matter tortures with passion. The communion between both approaches is great while the track becomes more and more intense with a clearly more aggressive guitar which fights against the invasion of synths and their seraphic languages.
With “Analog Overdose 3”, the Berlin duet continues to amaze and to seduce by leaving an enormous place to the creativity of their guest. The presence of Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock brings a rebel and untidy side, unique to Mind Over Matter, which completes marvellously the electronic fluidity of Thomas Fanger and Mario Schönwälder, whose Analog Overdose series continues quietly its evolution outside the limits of pure Berlin School. Here are two artists who are not afraid of going where others refuse even to think of it.

Sylvain Lupari (April 2007 and translated for Synth&Sequences on May 15th, 2013)
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=9697

jeudi 16 mai 2013

ERIK WOLLO: Celestia (E.P.2013)

“As always, Erik Wollo drags his listener into deep ambient poetic moods with just what it takes in rhythms to let him full awake”

1 Celestia Part I 8:53
2 Celestia Part II 5:50
3 Celestia Part III 5:48
4 Celestia Part IV 6:31

Projekt | ARC00091 (DDL27:04) ****
(Ambient, filmic and psy-tribal EM)

Ringings of carillons brighten up the night-breezes of the oceanographic singings. And "Celestia Part I" plunges us straight out into the enthralling mi-ambient universe of Erik Wollo's new EP. Another synth line, more discreet and brighter, counterbalances the dark approach of the introduction with an iridescent veil, paving the way to some fine riffs and pulsations which gurgle in the shade of clanic percussions. With its delicate rhythm, "Celestia Part I" has airs of déjà vu.  Mystic, “Celestia” floats on the ambiences of Silent Currents with 4 tracks which ally the fine rhythms of Wollo to his poetic atmospheres of musical landscapes. "Celestia Part II" borrows a darker bend, even dramatic, with slow layers filled by tones of ageing organ which glide over a rather spectral melodic pattern weaved of organic loops which coo in their echoes. The moods are sibylline with these seraphic choruses which try to pierce this opaque cloud of dark strata, leaving sound imprints torn between the blue and the black. It's with fine rainy drops that the transition between "Celestia Part II" and "Part III" is made. Confirming the proverb which says that every cloud has a silver lining, "Celestia Part III" inhales the ambiospheric serenity with a meshing of synth lines to angelic breaths which float over fine pulsations. Always pulled between the rhythm and the atmospheres, between the black and the blue, “Celestia” confirms its ambiguity with a finale where the psy-tribal rhythms are stirring under the piles of synth strata and of their harmonies tinted by their paradoxes. "Celestia Part IV" is a pure marvel and brings us back in time with a huge reminiscence of the rhythms that Steve Roach evoked in his period of Western Spaces and Desert Solitaire. The track is heavy of its hectic rhythm with a bass line of which the humming chords sculpt a languishing approach while that the percussions break out in a nervous and bubbling rhythmic show, concealing these synth lines and these oceanic breaths which have always injected the spectral and seraphic approaches which floated over the darkness of “Celestia”.
Sylvain Lupari (May 10th, 2013)
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=16084