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Electronics: Paul Ellis, Gert Emmens, Galactic Anthems

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PAUL ELLIS I Am Here (CD on Lotuspike)

This CD from 2012 features 68 minutes of inspired electronic music inspired by the rock carvings of the Chinook tribe of Native Americans who lived in the Columbia River Gorge 15.000 years ago.

Ellis plays: synthesizers, sequencers, guitar, bass and voice.

This release consists of three long-form electronic compositions.

The first track begins with bouncy tonalities with an underlying current of deeper pulsations which gradually flourish into a melodic pattern of chords that frolic off each other until additions, more agile sequences surface, merging everything into a gestalt of entrancing complexity. Eventually, piercing tones enter the mix, joined by bass drum impacts that induce a mounting sense of drama. Additional effects emerge and coalesce into a nest of pingponging riffs until the music achieves a state of sonic vibrancy. This level of animation persists as the elements evolve and expound upon the central theme√Čuntil the tune finally fades in the mist.

The next piece displays an equal share of zest as nimble chords cavort forth with twinkling resonance. The chords ricochet off each other with ebullience, finally diminishing and allowing pensive bass tonalities to rise in tandem with cello sweeps. A somber passage ensues, tempered by remote winds--but spry electronics suddenly swamp everything with their enthusiastic melodies. A sense of wonder creeps out of the mix, straining to suppress the jubilant keyboards. Again, the zeal fades√Č

And gives birth to the final track, with sighing tones and nebulous effects glittering from the depth of the mist. A miasma of bell-tones and chugging tones and softly churning mechanical sounds becomes prey to emerging pulsations of a ponderous nature. Gradually more fanciful keyboard riffs slide into play, intertwining to generate an urgent flow whose intensity aggrandizes as the piece progresses. A series of auxiliary electronic effects punctuate the surging stream, increasing the music's agitated condition. The frenetic pace shifts into a stretch of bubbling pulsations that reverberate with an astral flair. This celestial mode ushers the tune to its conclusion.

The album bristles with active electronics crafted into compelling melodies.

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GERT EMMENS An Artist's Strike (CD on Groove Unlimited)

This CD from 2012 features 78 minutes of fluid electronic music.

Surging electronics conspire with lively rhythms to generate powerful tuneages.

The electronics are versatile, running the gamut from atmospheric textures to dynamic riffs of a nimble-fingered nature. While layers of dreamy tonalities establish celestial realms, fluid melodies unfurl in the form of layered threads of keyboard-generated riffs.

Keyboards are diversely employed to generate the melodies. Basic riffs are set up, then elaborated on with additional chords, resulting in a lush sound that deftly manages to avoid sounding cluttered. The interweaving of cyclic patterns produces a quite satisfying melodic evolution.

Rhythms play a vital role in this music. Crisp beats pepper the tunes, lending locomotion of suitable pace. While percussion is not present at every moment, the rapid-fire application of keys often creates a non-impact presence of tempos throughout the songs, bestowing a lively animation to the tunes.

These compositions possess a vital puissance with their vibrant stature and alluring riffs. Emmens' style crafts flowing passages which build to pinnacles of mounting vigor. Frequently those peaks last for a long time, continuing to achieve additional heights with each passing moment; yet the crescendos retain a delicate character, conveying majesty steeped in suggestive mannerisms.

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GALACTIC ANTHEMS The Other Side (CD on Galactic Anthems Music)

This release from 2010 features 59 minutes of cosmic electronic music.

Galactic Anthems is Glenn Adams.

Adams' approach to contemporary electronic music tends to infuse a degree of prog into the mix, resulting in a lovely edge that makes his music stand out in a crowd.

The electronics are quite diverse, blending airy atmospherics with grittier riffs and generating an enticing counterpoint between ethereal and substantial tones. The auralscapes are often tinged with a celestial character, bestowing the songs with a distinct ascendant quality.

Keyboards initiate a profusion of the electronics, delineating lavish chords that rarely rely on cyclic application. Adams' nimble fingers craft intricate riffs that shimmer with astral definition.

Rhythms contribute a steady propulsion to this tuneage. The tempos are varied: strong and urgent to enhance a song's strength, and lighter in places where a soft touch is more appropriate. The beats are often rapid and quite complex, yet retain a vantage submerged in the mix so as not to become too overpowering.

These compositions flourish with a buoyant bounce which colors the music with a jubilant flavor. The latter part of this album consists of harmonic pieces, and even these beatless tunes exhibit a strong expansive mien, aspiring to enrapture the listener with a positive sense of cosmic wonder.

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