lundi 19 janvier 2015

RENE Van Der WOUDEN: Sequential Mixed Up - The Best of REWO (2014)

“What we have here is a fair compilation of nice music which shows all the facets of REWO; great cosmic e-rock which requires a zest of patience before it swallows us in the gates of EM heavens”

1 Gruga Platz 4 20:51
2 Numerus Fixus Part 6 (Extended) 11:53
3 Golden Dreams of Silver Elements (Remix) 14:26
4 Go Quiet (2011 version) 9:44
5 Sequential Tourism 16:11
6 Far Across the Heavens (2011 version) 8:42
7 Get Quieter (2011 version) 9:44
8 Arcadia (2011 version) 18:17

REWO Bandcamp (DDL 109:53) ****
(Sequencer based Cosmic Rock)
The holiday period, these end of year are often synonym of avalanches of CD Boxset, remix and/or compilations for the major labels as well as for the independent artists. The 2014 year was no exception with great gifts from Ultimae Records and DiN label, without forgetting these artists who offered a selection of their best tracks for a price which was, still is, more than affordable in the purpose to make better known their music. “Sequential Mixed Up - The Best of REWO” aims exactly this goal. And the least that we can say is that Rene van der Wooden  aimed accurately. Rene van der Wooden is a Dutch artist/synthesist who makes no compromise. His music, strongly inspired by the sequence based Berlin School or the cosmic moods and beats of the French School, is thumbing one's nose at the more melodic rhythms and at the more ethereal ambiopsheres of the Dutch School style. The man likes to exploit long structures, establishing slow ambient intros which little by little are pouring in rhythms which become patiently wilder. At this level "Gruga Platz 4", with its heavy and steady rhythm which gets excited in a long introduction fed by some metallic rustlings which go beyond the 6 minutes point, will rock you off the ground with a sequenced rhythm of an incredible violence which will remind that of  Bernd Kistenmacher in  Let it Out!Splendid and wild! I allready scheduled it for my next radio show named Murmure du Son (Radio Centre-Ville Montreal). “Sequential Mixed Up - The Best of REWO” is concentrated on the following albums; Alchemia, 2006, Universal Quiet and Sequential Tourism, both released in 2008, and finally Numerus Fixus, launched in 2009. Each track was remixed, remasterised and even worked again with the additions of sequences and new tones. Only "Gruga Platz 4" is a new track, having being written and performed during a concert held in Gruga Park Essen on June 4th 2011.
After this powerful piece which washes ears, "Numerus Fixus Part 6" arrives at us with a version lengthened of almost 4 minutes. The sound is more current and clearly more detailed with pulsations which resound more. And the addition of sequences bring another dimension, as rhythmic but also more melodic than on the original version. "Golden Dreams of Silver Elements" and "Far Across the Heavens" are both tracks which take advantage the most of these benefactions of a new remaster with a new sequencing and cosmic tones. "Golden Dreams of Silver Elements" keeps its approach of static rhythm which swirls into brief spirals made up by jerky loops. Already that the original movement of sequences was very unforeseen, here it radiates of a more accentuated approach with more lines of sequences which wind these uncountable loops. "Far Across the Heavens" is the track which has got the most beautiful sound-lift. Even heavier, the rhythm feeds on the oscillations of an analog Moog. The spirit of 
Tangerine Dream and of Chris Franke's hyperactive sequences, and their dances a bit free-and-easy, is very present on this heavy and lively track. A little as in "Get Quiet" which is another strong track with some very TD sonic fragrances. Coming from the Universal Quiet album, this track is quite underestimated with furious sequenced oscillations which undulate under the charms of a synth to the perfumes of East. From the same album, "Go Quiet" offers a finely jerky rhythmic which spreads its coat of ions to the intermittent jolts in the sinister envelopes of a morphic synth. Out of the album of the same name, "Sequential Tourism" was my first real crush with the universe Van Der Wooden. This is very Jarre, as much in the sequences of oscillating loops, of which the heaviness ends to get the upper hand over the velocity, than in its attractive cosmic envelope. Even if the differences are less blatant here than on the other tracks of this compilation, the same goes for "Arcadia" of the same album, to re-hear these two tracks of Sequential Tourism shows the Ying and the Yang which cuts clearly Rene van der Wooden's works.
With this nice mix of
Jarre and Tangerine Dream, “Sequential Mixed Up - The Best of REWO” is a beautiful, but above all, a fair compilation of Rene van der Wooden's very uneven universe. And when I say uneven, I do not say it in a pejorative sense. Far from there! The author chose aptly a series of tracks, showing the vast gap which marks slightly too often his music. As Van Der Wooden is capable of sculpturing structures that make you totally hooked from the first listening, as he is capable of testing your patience with long introductions which always eventually give birth to a trick that is very pleasant to the ear. "Gruga Platz 4" and "Arcadia" are striking examples of his universe sometimes strongly tinted with paradox. But when it starts, hold your hats with both your hands and feet.
Sylvain Lupari (January 18th, 2015) &

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