RUDY ADRIAN: Par Avion (Sequencer Sketches 4) (CD on Groove Unlimited)
This release from 2007 offers 79 minutes of melodic atmospheric EM.
New Zealander synthesist Adrian is joined by: voice-over on one track by Barbara Stone, while the "Across the Canyons" piece is a collaboration with American synthesist Greg Kyryluk (aka Alpha Wave Movement).
Delicate textures establish an aerial vantage for this tuneage, floating high and surrounded by wisps of tonal clouds. Dreamy electronics waft and soar, tickling the ears with fragile notes wrapped in crystalline honey. Chords slide into elongated tones that in turn evolve into pastoral harmonics. At least that's how the songs start off.
Once the overall serenity is established, Adrian applies more puissant sentiments to the mix, with ascendant tones and convivial chords that flavor the airborne music with substantial melodies. Elegant riffs are generated with the introduction of stronger electronics. Weight and depth are achieved with cyclic keyboard patterns and shimmering sequencing. Tender piano passages evoke optimistic deliverance.
A certain majesty is found in these tunes. Beyond the obvious atmospheric intention, this grandeur is fueled by periodic use of denser tones--nothing dark, more like the regal spectacle of amassed thunderheads minus their stormy content.
No percussion is present. Tempos would only get in the way of the music's expansive character. At times, rhythms are approximated through the use of choppy notes.
The compositions are rigidly ambient with inclinations for contemporary EM of an ethereal nature. Soothing harmonics are pleasantly seasoned with capable melodies. The music points upward, describing a soaring freedom, liberating the listener of gravity and other earthly concerns.
With the last two tracks, Adrian escalates the airborne demeanor of the music, turning the sonic regard toward regions beyond the stratosphere to examine the star-filled heavens. These pieces exhibit spacier properties with the presence of moodier tones and cosmic embellishments, plunging the listener through nebulous vapors and vistas of sparse delineation.
THE JUPITER 8: Sounds from the Engine Room (Part 1) (CD on A-Frame Media)
This release from 2005 offers 56 minutes of bouncy trance music.
Buoyant electronics are accompanied by equally energetic e-perc. Auxiliary space effects fritter around the edges, enhancing the pleasantly mesmerizing music. High-end drones sway from one horizon to the other, establishing a cosmic panorama. Meanwhile, cheery chords cavort with enthusiasm and act as a charming nucleus for the melodies. Chittering diodes are persuaded into jovial expressions that fuse novelty with mirth. Astral moods are created with expert craftsmanship.
Cyclic guitar riffs emerge to lend ambrosial embellishment with sweet chords that twinkle like stars in the roiling electronics.
The popping rhythms provide a tasty propulsion for it all. As the music progresses, supplementary tempos creep into the mix, increasing the overall density without adding any ponderous weight.
There's a distinct ping-pong effect going on in the first track, goading the notes into a lateral hyperactivity that evolves into an engaging complexity. This ricocheting structure becomes more subliminal in the CD's second piece, where the back-and-forth nature slides into an elastic oscillation. The third track exhibits a distinctly refinement in which the ping-pong quality is less predictable, resulting in a more mature sound.
While fundamentally simple, these compositions harbor a captivating intricacy that is achieved through establishing patterns, then injecting collateral riffs and loops and rhythms until everything merges into gloriously melodic gems. The layers gain bewitching strength and shimmering appeal through their conjunctive application. In the CD's final track, this amalgamation achieves a succulent sophistication as the elements evolve unto themselves while playing off each other.
NATURAL FREQUENCIES: Tranquility in Motion (CD on Ozella Lounge)
This release from 2007 offers 62 minutes of delicate electronic music.
Natural Frequencies is Andreas Leifeld.
Airy tonalities provide a backdrop for pensive e-perc and crystalline keyboards. Articulated chords surface amid this foggy milieu, establishing a dreamlike mood periodically augmented by sweeping textures.
A strange contrast of vaporous ambience and piercing electronics provide this tuneage with a tasty girth. Aerial drones and expansive tones generate a cosmic sensibility that is excellently tempered by immediate elements.
Guitar and sitar comprise some of those foreground aspects. The sitar provides an exotic touch to the austere flow, sizzling with contented wisdom. The guitar functions from a subliminal vantage, infusing the tunes with seductive punctuations.
While percussion is present, the rhythms remain sedate and muted, performing their lazy propulsion from a subdued vantage. Often the beats are treated in manners that attribute them fuzzy edges.
The electronics supply the gist of the music's substance. Ethereal textures waft with rippling movements. Temperate waves rise and fall like gurgling mists. Choppy burblings provide a slight energizing influence that never reaches an intrusive level.
These compositions fuse tranquility with subtle motion. Serenity stirs with gentle agitation, achieving a covert revitalization for the spirit. Leifeld has an expert command of coaxing poignant melodic flows from accumulative ambience, then seasoning those soundscapes with life through the application of vibrant embellishments.
SOULWIRE: Rewriting Destiny (CD on Soulwire Music)
This release from 2006 offers 55 minutes of stately electronic music.
Soulwire is Ken Hill.
Dreamy electronics establish sober foundations which are then spiced with nimble-fingered guitar and emotional piano chords.
The electronics seep with golden fluidity, evoking nebulous clouds whose tapestries host auxiliary electronics of more abstract character. Spiraling chords sparkle like luminous landmarks amid the brooding, darker tones. Numerous contributions of grand piano generate a cerebral mood with the elegant mannerisms displayed by their presence.
Charming guitar filters through these tunes, lending a romantic touch here, a regal presence there. Luscious harp creates an emergent demeanor.
Snickety artificial beats are often bolstered by more conventional percussives. These pulsing rhythms provide suitable locomotion to the music, wisely submerging at times to allow the music's dreamy essence to flourish.
Flutes flavor some songs with an airy melancholy.
The lively compositions are stately despite their judicious pep. Frequently commanded by piano, these tunes exhibit a classical disposition tempered by the ephemeral fancies expressed by the complimentary modern air of electronics.
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