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Electronics: Create, the Omega Syndicate, Remy

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CREATE: Biospherical Imagery (CD on Groove Unlimited)

This release from 2006 offers 79 minutes of stately electronic music.

Create is Stephen Humphries.

On November 11, 2004, Humphries performed his debut concert as Create in Nottingham in the UK. Immediately afterward, with the music still fresh in his mind, he set about recording studio versions of the material from that gig. This is what can be found on this CD, with the addition of two short ambient interludes which were recorded late in 2005.

A 47 minute version of the title track occupies the majority of this CD. Luxurious textures serves as a seductive intro to the piece, drawing in the listener for the gradual emergence of e-perc rhythms and more demonstrative electronics. Keyboards generate serpentine riffs amid a rising tide of resourceful tonalities. The mesh progresses with evolutionary disposition, flowing through a series of increasingly more complex patterns, striving with each passing moment to achieve a state beyond mesmerization. Urgency is established as the cycles accrete strength and complexity. Periodically, the music features brief breathing spaces while it reorganizes itself for the next mutation. With each successive plateau, the harmonies grow denser and the melodies attain more intensity. As the drama continues, a cosmic demeanor is introduced, flavoring the organic sound with astral qualities. The ultimate crescendo throbs with compelling verve and vigorous passion.

The other tracks exhibit the same regal mien, employing a slowburn pace that moves from floating personality to nimble-fingered intricacy. The electronics blend crystalline aspects with earthier elements, producing thrilling tuneage of vibrant character.

The pair of ambient interludes are just that, exampling Humphries' acumen with atmospheric structure that is far from minimal.

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THE OMEGA SYNDICATE: Apocalypse (CD on Neu Harmony)

This release from 2006 offers 69 minutes of energetic electronic music.

The Omega Syndicate is: David Gurr, Xan Alexander (both on synthesizers, samplers, and sequencers), and Rob Clynes (on guitars and various FX).

Airborne keyboards drift into view amid an assortment of bubbling and growling effects. These preamble elements swiftly coalesce into a melodic cohesion with forceful drive. The keyboards describe insistent riffs that swell to breathless proportion, cycling into an exhausting series of extended pinnacles. Sometimes these keys adopt a sweetly crystalline quality that stands in marked contrast to the overall intense fashion exhibited by the tuneage. During the third track, the electronics achieve a pixyesque mien that is full of frolic and jubilation.

Guitar crunches batter the flow. At other times, snarling guitar riffs rise into prominence with demonstrative result, injecting fiery passion to the urgent keyboard patterns and stately textural vistas.

Percussion is generally buried in heavy treatments so as to disguise their impact origins. Most of the rhythms end up resounding with strong artificiality that repeats in rapid succession, approximating the required beats.

The fourth composition (which is also the longest, at 22 minutes) takes a slowburn approach, accreting layers with a studious pace. Each passage flows easily into the next, from the sedate opening to a tense stretch of expectancy that soon reaches a stage of glorious drama before slipping into a brief calm finale.

This is followed by an eruptive last track that employs all the strong elements (seductive sequencing, blazing guitar, complex percussives, and earnest keyboards) for a gripping dose of energetic EM.

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REMY: Senses (CD on AKH Records, distributed by Groove Unlimited)

This release from 2006 offers 69 minutes of classically tinted electronic music

Joining Remy is Mattie (from Todd the Nose) on vocals on two tracks.

Pensive music that combines classic piano with versatile electronics, fusing tradition and modern to produce a rewarding sonic experience rich with drama. While electronic textures pulse and waft, threaded with string quartets, delicate chords dance across the piano keys, evoking emotional sentiments. Electrical discharges and whistling cybernetics flutter through a gathering fog of imminent extravagance. Other times, heavenly choirs descend into a slowly accreting realm of synthetic agitation.

The blend of old school and technology is superbly handled, resulting in a lush panorama that plays to the advantages of both sounds. While celestial airs coalesce overhead, machinery generates a thrilling modern foundation of serpentine rhythms swimming in vibrant electronics.

The two pieces that feature vocals (one of which comprises recitations, while the other utilizes romantic masculine crooning) are steeped in classical overtones, manifesting as orchestral cellos and a rising tide of violins. Peppy percussion enlivens one of these tracks, injecting a contemporary flavor into the concert hall milieu; searing synth guitar completes this futurist flair.

The "Destination" track was recorded live at the Pelibar in Leiden on March 23, 2006, and contains samples from the last track on this CD.

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