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  • Sylvain Lupari

AKIKAZE: Blue Sky Events (2014-2018)

“Multiple shifting phases with a solid links between, Blue Sky Events proposes an EM that should please the fans of IC's easy listening EM”

1 Blue Sky Events 16:18 2 Twist of Fate 9:13 3 Heart to Heart 5:16 4 Rebound 34:05 5 Leap of Faith 13:40 Syngate Wave | PCX5

(CD-r/DDL 78:40) (V.F.) (Melodious evolving EM)

Peipijn Courant is another veteran on the scene of EM of the Berliner style which quietly seems to want to come out from the oubliette. After a very convincing first comeback album in Solstice last year, the musician behind Akikaze gives the ok to a reedition of his last solo album of which the release in December 2014 coincided with his 25 years of career. Written between October and November, 2014, the music of BLUE SKY EVENTS wears this small retro cachet which suits quite well with an artwork, terrible I grant it, which incites the eyes, and the ears, to run away towards paradisiac islands. And who says Akikaze says also long structures in movements with a touch of romanticism that makes the music of the Dutch musician more attractive and more effective than a first judgment lets appear.

An acoustic guitar launches the debate before that jerky orchestrations a la Tomita, Snowflakes are Dancing, propel the soft acoustic romance straight down to the bottom of our eardrums. Bass drums add a dramatic weight while the chirping of the electronic effects place the title-track in the comfort of its elements. The rhythm which follows is as much fluid as a race against the death with a good sequenced movement to which Akikaze adds nuances in the tones. A refrain a bit baroque divides this wild rhythm which starts up again with a renewed vigor from a bass line capable of supporting this electronic rhythm inhabited by its phases of hesitation. These phases moreover which slow down the race of Blue Sky Events also propel the music towards new levels with the addition of orchestrations and of synth effects as harmonious as those of the 70's from the French exploratory movement. The strength of this album, and I believe that it's also one of the strengths of Peipijn Courant, is undoubtedly the subtle evolutions in the 16 minutes of Blue Sky Events, and it's the same thing moreover for the gigantic Rebound. Following the same main thread, the music, its harmonies and its effects, is constantly challenged by new elements which are grafted to the vertiginous race of the rhythm. A short acoustic interlude proposes a small phase of rest for neurons before the rhythm makes a strong comeback with a more electronic envelope which reminds me the music of Space Art or yet Michael Garrison. This duel between the analog perfumes and those more contemporary add a strong element of charm to this structure where the bass lines swallow the electronic percussions which nevertheless give some tonus to the metamorphic phases of this very good title-track. After a delicious introduction marked under the sign of an Irish bucolic romance, the flute of Twist of Fate leaves room to a more baroque approach with a very Tangerine Dream sequencing pattern of the Jive years which makes its keys skip in the vampiric layers of a dark organ. Even in its 9 minutes, this title, written in 1994 with Lambert Ringlage, also plays on these structures of pink-candies tunes with a cheerful flute which lets a more rock and dark approach devoured its rural instincts. This is melodious and the flute charms my beautiful Lise. That gives you an idea!

Heart to Heart is a title without rhythm, set apart for its bed of cardiac pulsations, where an electric guitar cries on a dense one décor of mist which derives in a cosmic approach. The beginning of Rebound is going to make you jump with a sound editing which seems to me to botched where noise of a delirious crowd roared out in our eardrums without warnings. No fade-in! I found that very unpleasant. We find the same thing on the original recording. Effects of fireworks, romantic guitar, astral keyboard and dreamy vibes, its 34 minutes adopts the shape and the evolutionary pattern of the title-track. The title is divided into several phases which go from pure electronic rock, driven quite hard by excited sequences, to cute and bucolic melodies, to some easy-listening EM and to ambiences which serve as springboard to divide the multiple phases of a title of which the many changes make us unhook by places. Divided into two segments, Leap of Faith proposes an introduction of ambient elements weaved on foggy layers where cries a synth and its lines of choir. This very nostalgic approach melts into an electronic tango led by a keyboard as much changeable in its approach than the structural flashes of lightning which lead the multiple phases bound by a work of monk in this BLUE SKY EVENTS.

An honest album with weaknesses at the level of the recording (fade - out and debuts are lacking finish) which annoy but decrease not at all the talent of Akikaze sound writer. The fans of light EM that we find on the IC label, I think among others of Megabyte, TeeKay, G.E.N.E. and the more commercial albums of Software, should like this album eyes closed!

Sylvain Lupari (April 18th, 2018) ***½** SynthSequences.com

Available at SynGate Bandcamp

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© 2019 by Alexandre Corbin for Synth&Sequences \ Sylvain (A.K.A. Phaedream) Lupari

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