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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

AES DANA & MIKTEK: Far & Off (2016)

“Far & Off is more ambient than the two previous E.P. but included in the context of an album it highlights jewels such as Cut., Alkaline, Parenthesis and Evenfall”

1 Far & Off 8:38 2 Diffraction Protocol 8:00 3 Cut. 5:48 4 Small Things Matter 8:08 5 Alkaline 9:16 6 Parenthesis 7:56 7 6am 7:02 8 Sulfur 5:48 9 Evenfall 7:22 10 The Unexpected Hours 11:34 Ultimae Records ‎| inre083 (CD/DDL 79:32) (V.F.) (Psybient & psybeat)

Last sonic chapter which encloses the trilogy AES Dana & MikTek, FAR & OFF is the sum 3 E.P. that the French-Greek duet comfortably installed well between our two intellectual hemispheres since Cut at the end of 2014. Then came Alkaline the following year and then finally The Unexpected Hours which is released at the same time as FAR & OFF in March 2016. FAR & OFF contains 10 pieces of psybient music which fill the some 80 minutes of those 3 E.P.. And if the structures are almost identical some tracks, among which Alkaline, saw their time frame changed a bit. The title-track, Small Things Matter, Sulfur and The Unexpected Hours compose the new music of this compilation. New tracks that can also be found on the last E.P. of AES Dana & MikTek. A slow wave came of too far opens Far and Off. Shadows are getting loosen, as well as some spectral squeakings.  One of these shadows crawls lasciviously, at the same time as palpitations are drumming an ambient rhythm. There isn't 45 seconds to the meter and already the electronic fauna of AES Dana and MikTek tickles our eardrums. Jingles, percussions and sound effects get add to this mixture of drones which spreads its sunken winds and its lines which wave like sonic snakes in a storm of hollow winds. The more we move forward and the more the transparency has the upper hand over the opacity with layers of voice which create a crescendo of atmospheres of which the peak is nesting near the 5 minutes point. The warbling loops of the bass line bring Far and Off towards an electronic rhythm always so uncertain but clearly more alive with a beautiful duel between the palpitations and the percussions, weaving a very level-headed Ambient House which floods its aspiration of a steady rhythm in order to dive back into the dark drones and the translucent lines which always fed the ambiosonic decoration of the duet. We are in a familiar ground here because FAR & OFF breathes the main lines of Cut and Alkaline but in a more ambiospherical approach. Here the rhythms take time to hatch and they beat in short-lived phases or in short structures of stop'n'go. Small Things Matter also arises from these drones which fill up the ambiences of FAR & OFF. It's a combination of black waves and of sibylline voices which are at the origin of these hummings. A bass line pounds while a synth line rolls its harmonies loops, like a bird and its magnetizing chant. Layers of voice and industrial rumblings adorn the atmospheres of a tint of darkness while the bangings of percussions and the cracklings of the jingles forge a rhythm which is sometimes more lively and other times more linear. That reminds me a lot of the uncertain rhythms of Plastikman, but in a clearly more psybient envelope. Sulfur is the 3rd newness on FAR & OFF. And after a very ambiospherical departure, the track bursts with a good structure of organic rhythm, sometimes even very mechanical, with rumblings of chains and/or of huge jingles, which creates patterns of stop'n'go in a multitude of eclectic tones which sparkle between our ears, like the flavors of a very spicy ambient EM, and a myriad of waves and abstruse voices. The Unexpected Hours drink a few from the same structures, the same atmospheres and the same emotions of the 3 other tracks which compose the last E.P ., as well as this first album, of the AES Dana & MikTek duet. Here also the rhythm is cornered in an orgy of sounds which sway between the organic or the industrialist fauna and a multitude of lines filled of sibylline and of emotions colors which haunt the 80 minutes of FAR & OFF. Showing that the last E.P. of AES Dana and MikTek is more ambient than both first ones. Except that included in the context of an album and of its 80 minutes, it highlights jewels such as Cut, Alkaline, Parenthesis and Evenfall. Sylvain Lupari (April 14th, 2016) *****

Available at Ultimae Records Bandcamp

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