Sonic Curiosity Logo

Electronics: Gert Emmens, Robert Fox, Manuel Göttsching, Spyra, Volt

decorative rule

GERT EMMENS:The Nearest Faraway Place, Volume 1 (CD on Groove Unlimited)

This CD from 2008 features 71 minutes of luxurious electronic tuneage.

Accompanying synthesist Emmens on this release is Jan Dieterich on guitar.

This music moves swiftly from an ethereal opening into more substantial tuneage with accreting loops of delicately fabricated tones and sedate e-perc. Lavish electronic sweeps enter the mix, accompanied by keyboard riffs that goad the harmonic flow into more melodic character.

A wondrous blend of crystalline and rumbling sounds balance this music, but the emphasis is definitely on the type of notes that shimmer in the air with regal extravagance. These sonic structures establish a buoyancy whose lift continues to divorce the audience from any earthy vantage, delivering the listeners to incredible altitudes where vaporous textures caress and calm. Auxiliary tonalities meld together, forming complex tapestries of glorious sonic optimism. Emerging from these interweaving configurations. pleasant riffs strive to infuse everything with a sense of pleasant grandeur.

Percussion plays a vital role in this tuneage, but its effect is temperate and luxurious. The rhythms are immersed in the textural flows, lending propulsion without overwhelming the music with their authority.

The guitar coexists nicely with the electronics, rarely reaching a strident definition.

These compositions are luxurious and appealing, tickling the audience’s outward urge and bolstering a sense of cosmic curiosity. The tuneage flourishes with a puissance that is infectious despite its restraint.

decorative rule

ROBERT FOX: Adonai (CD on AD Music)

This release from 2008 offers 62 minutes of eminent electronic tuneage.

Composed for a stage production that tells the Easter story from a more human perspective, this music possesses a strong dramatic flair. While the religious aspects are integral to the project, this music adopts an outlook that is more emotional than ecclesiastic in nature.

The electronics are rich and majestic, utilizing a full range of sound, from fragile tones to commanding chords. There are synthesized strings and harpsichord hints contributing to the overall definition. Textural layers and cyclic embellishments and nimble riffs combine to produce a lush and satisfying experience.

Ethereal passages are airy and pulsate with shafts of divine illumination. These heavenly soundscapes imbue the atmosphere with characteristics of textural delight. Cathedral chants are employed to enhance this fulfillment.

Other parts are vibrant with imposing melodies that grip the heart and elevate the audience’s communal ecstasy. A sense of expansive glory permeates these tunes.

Noble percussion lends suitable locomotion to the music, injecting a stately motivation that serves to catalyze the melodies into a state of demonstrative presence.

These compositions are highly cinematic in their evocative disposition. One becomes swept away by the passionate temperament. Dreamy passages instill a vivid serenity, while the more dramatic songs capture fervent tension and impart climactic magnificence with skillful dignity.

decorative rule


This CD from 2007 offers 72 minutes of fluid electronic music performed live at the Anoyo Prism Festival at Mt. Fuji, Japan, on April 29, 2006.

Cascading electronic loops establish an ever-changing vital foundation for additional electronics. The mix is fleshed out with some bewitching guitar.

Liquid tonalities flow with a soothing disposition, generating comfortable melodies. Auxiliary layers compound the basic melody until the end result is quite complex and engaging. As each new aspect enters the mix, the tune becomes more lush, more appealing, while never growing ponderous or top-heavy.

The electronics are crisp and delicate, evoking a crystalline structure of immense grace and breathtaking beauty. A bouncy quality is present, but always harnessed in a congenial fashion, reaching an intensity devoid of any aggression.

The guitar superbly compliments the soothing tuneage. Basically, the guitar creates languid chords that float with fragile buoyancy. Sometimes, the guitar’s notes are mournful and endearing; while at other times, the riffs are searing and stunning--yet constantly pleasant.

E-perc is employed, usually in a suppressed mode, pittering away just beneath the surface, lending a subtle, exotic propulsion to the fluid melodies.

These compositions are relaxed and easygoing, utilizing a temperate vitality that concentrates on luxurious undulations of sound. One of Göttsching’s signature skills is combining minimalist layers to produce a density of glistening proportion. The resultant melodies are always intricate and alluring, dreamy with hints of vigor. There are no riffs forcing their way to the forefront in these tunes; each element coexists in a comfortable balance with each other, generating a delightful and memorable union that never fails to satisfy.

decorative rule

SPYRA: Gasoline 91 Octane (CD on Manikin Records)

This release from 2008 features 67 minutes of alluring electronic tuneage.

Spyra is Wolfram Spyra.

This music is a balanced mixture of dreamy tuneage and energized tunes.

The electronics are versatile and invigorating, utilizing a full range of sounds and timbres. Atmospheric tones blend with fanciful riffs, while bouncy rhythms inject locomotion to the pulsating melodies. Lavish tonalities stream throughout the tracks, establishing rippling harmonics that serve as excellent foundations for the livelier electronics that generate the prefrontal melodies. Keyboard riffs abound, flourishing through variations as they explore musical tangents that expand each song’s basic theme. Quirky diodes provide a wry undercurrent of mirth, blooping and blipping along from the sidelines.

While fundamental aspects in this music comprise an assortment of textural layers, a bevy of engaging riffs serve to propel the tuneage with keyboard virtuosity. The crafted melodies are simultaneously mesmerizing and sprightly. There are passages in which that sprightly mood overwhelms a song’s dreamy character, generating a dose of animation that is favorable, indeed highly rewarding.

E-perc is quite integral to this music, yet the tempos hardly dominate the flow, functioning on a level of equality with the electronics. Layers of percussion mesh to create invigorating rhythms, snappy and sensual.

These compositions are a masterful fusion of lush soundscapes and dreamy exuberance. The injection of a charming rhythmic presence elevates the music to a riveting level of appeal.

decorative rule

VOLT: HjVi (CD on Groove Unlimited)

This CD from 2008 offers 76 minutes of lively electronic music recorded live at Hampshire Jam 6 in Liphook UK on October 20, 2007.

Volt is: Michael Shipway and Steve Smith.

The first track gets right to it. No languid opening of abstract coalescence--the music surges directly into a state of invigorating liveliness. Pulsating electronic cycles roll forth, urgent in their definition. Piercing embellishment appears in the form of keyboards describing fanciful riffs. Compelling chords reach skyward, stretching the melodies to express evolution from rudimentary generation through maturity to an endearing decline.

Subsequent tracks do feature moody intros, however, creating a pacific calm before things plunge into vigorous substance and exhilarative velocity.

Throughout the tracks, a variety of new sounds are introduced to garnish the already dense sound. This habitual melange keeps the music fresh with regular doses of engaging diversity.

Guitar appears in one piece, although it is probably of synthetic origin. Nevertheless, this instance lends a decidedly cosmic blaze to the tune.

Rhythms are present, but it is the rapid application of non-impact sounds that serves to generate the majority of the locomotion. Sometimes, conventional e-perc is employed, but the use of non-impact rhythms is more predominant, establishing a fluid edge to the comfortable tempos.

These compositions progress from their initially earnest pace to a frenzied urgency with slick development. A heightened sense of constant movement is accomplished with ease, all the while the melodies being seasoned with charming variations and thrilling punctuation.

decorative rule
Entire page © 2008 Matt Howarth.
All rights reserved.
Webpage design by Stasy