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Electronics: Alpha Wave Movement, Steve Barnes, Interconnected, Rene van der Wouden

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ALPHA WAVE MOVEMENT: Cosmic Mandala (CD on Harmonic Resonance Recordings)

This CD from 2009 offers 32 minutes of stately electronic music.

Alpha Wave Movement is Gregory Kyryluk.

Awash in liquid embellishment, pacific atmospherics establish a regal mood which is then elevated by delicate electronics and temperate rhythms.

Gentle textures serve as a foundation for stately electronics and agile keyboard patterns, all contributing to the generation of a celestial euphoria. Auxiliary electronics produce a lushness that is quite hypnotic and definitely enthralling.

There are passages in which the keyboards achieve a shrill disposition, expressing a strident yet coaxing jubilation. The riffs expand, exploring diversions of thrilling scope, then moving on to the next segment in which fresh tuneage goes through similar diversity. A pleasant blend of soothing chords and piercing notes conspire to deliver a well-rounded sonic experience.

While some of the rhythms are crafted from the cyclic application of non-impact sounds, a percentage of conventional e-perc is employed to give this floating music a suitable oomph with uplifting tempos.

While there are only two tracks here (the first occupying the majority of the album), the main track involves an excursion through several stages. Each section unfurls itself in a sovereign manner, reaching ecstatic epiphanies of delightful substance. The second track engages the listener in an intense ascent that passes through dark realms to reach a glorious pinnacle.

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STEVE BARNES: New Day (CD on AD Music)

This CD from 2009 offers 51 minutes of new age electronic music.

Barnes is more well-known for his dance material (under the identity Digger), but here he shows a more sedate and cultured side with instrumental tunes of a new age nature.

A full range of instrumentation augments the electronics, resulting in pleasant tuneage with an optimistic edge.

Piano features prominently, establishing an accessible flair to these songs. The cerebral keys evoke a stately presence that stirs the heart with each chord. The melodies are peaceful, almost courteous, as they express expansive hope and humanitarian sentiments.

Traditional percussion contributes congenial locomotion. The tempos are unhurried and affable, promoting languid propulsion.

Gently played guitar lends a romantic edge to a few instances. Meanwhile orchestral strains serve to bestow a certain heartwarming fragility to the music.

The electronics are mostly immersed in the piano/percussion mix. Airy textures establish lavish atmospheric panoramas that lurk in the background as elevated foundations.

These compositions reflect a soothing disposition that inspires relaxed contemplation while subtly stimulating the soul with inspirational aspirations. While the songs strive to capture environmental moods (as evidenced by titles like "Watching Clouds," "Falling Leaves," and "Still Waters"), the music's most viable appeal will be enjoyed by lovers spending a quiet evening together.

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INTERCONNECTED: Current Flow (CD on VU-US)

This CD from 2010 features 49 minutes of melodic ilbient electronic music.

Interconnected is: Bakis Sirros (from Parallel Worlds and Memory Geist) and Ingo Zobel (from DRON, Signalform, Self Oscillate, and Datasette).

Melodic electronics are tinged with artificial rhythms, yet retain a dreamy demeanor.

Heavenly tones and glitchy sounds are used in slippery conjunction, combining in a tasty manner to produce haunting tunes. Sweet bell-tones achieve an icy flair that is then balanced by the presence of coarser elements. Gurgling diodes contribute an edgy character that becomes softened by their fluid application.

While many of the electronics are crystalline and crisp, an amount of deeper tones are injected into the mix, resulting in a bewitching polarity. This contrast is further enhanced by the glitchy tempos that accompany each piece.

The percussion is comprised of an assortment of ilbient glitches and hissy scratches. These synthetic beats provide silky rhythms that are quite sinuous despite their harsh nature.

These compositions are excellent examples of attractive ilbience, tunes that employ abrasive aspects to achieve a pleasant milieu. The melodies are bouncy and congenial. The rhythms are carefully restrained to provide oomph without overwhelming the material with too strong a presence.

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RENE VAN DER WOUDEN: Numerus Fixus (CD on Rewo Music )

This CD from 2009 offers 63 minutes of compelling electronic music.

Crystalline electronics achieve a dramatic presence in conjunction with e-perc and heavenly textures.

There's a full range of resonance going on here, with deep bass tonalities coexisting with sweetly shrill electronics. Keyboards guide these notes into engaging melodies. Sweeping chords establish lavish punctuations as they cascade through the mix, injecting a taste of majesty to the music's amiable mood.

Loops are set up and left to run, while additional keys produce compelling riffs that swim amid the pensive celestial electronic layers.

A selection of more guttural effects periodically contribute an edginess to this stately tuneage. Meanwhile, some environmental samples provide grounding embellishment, reminding the listener of the songs’ ecological roots.

E-perc is utilized in an understated manner to boost the flow with subtle locomotion. At other times, the use of strident electronic pulsations approximate rhythms of a softer demeanor.

These compositions possess a regal quality, expressing nature's strength in the face of mankind's solipsistic ways. Van der Wouden has a captivating skill for getting electronic machinery to capture an holistic environment. The melodies he generates evoke nature's indomitable perseverance, with each sweeping heavenly layer perfectly mirroring growth. One can clearly experience a meadow’s determination as it holds at bay fields of asphalt.

All green allusions aside, though, this music abounds with strong melodies that are rich with engaging allure.

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