ALBA ECSTASY: Endless Space (2020)
“Endless Space contains great moments of music with rhythms and melodies which hang a souvenir in our ears”
1 Dragon's Flight 8:25
2 Critical Zone 10:45
3 Cryogenic Sleep 8:49
4 Dreamers 7:59
5 Endless Space 13:19
6 Far Away from Home 4:28
(DDL 53:47) (V.F.)
(Berlin School, Cosmic Rock)
Hey! It's been almost a year since I last spoke about Alba Ecstasy's music. Since then, Mihail-Adrian Simion has continued his little journey by always making an album every month ... or almost. So, what about after more than 10 months? Well, his music is still as interesting if I rely on the 54 minutes of ENDLESS SPACE.
Heavy and catchy, like an ambient hip-hop, Dragon's Flight offers a hopping rhythm like the approach of a street gang. Another rhythm line is grafted, giving depth to this itinerant rhythmic approach which can effectively give the impression of a surge and an idle flight of a dragon. Arpeggios also dance there, and their elastic filaments fill any feeling of emptiness, giving a good depth to a structure where the synth solos are like fire lances, as also this siren warning us of a possible attack of these lances. Critical Zone is one of AE's good titles. It's a good heavy and fluid Berlin School with lines of sequences which intersect their rhythmic dualities in a circular vision. The percussions solidify the base with a necessary presence while the sequences subdivide their entity in order to always thicken a little more an unbreakable framework screwed by heavy and vibrating reverberating effects. A great title! After a morphic opening, Cryogenic Sleep reveals an attractive ascending rhythm à la Berlin School style. Too close to sleepy ambiences, the rhythm beats of a muffled and diminished life in its cryogenic envelope.
We hear from a distance this jerky circular movement of the sequencer that surrounds Dreamers. Regular as a spasmodic ticking, the rhythm plants its crystalline keys which revolve in a too narrow circle where all around the sonic perfumes of the nocturnal mists and these delicate misty cries of the floating streaks. This rhythmic refrain meets a sound vessel filled with anarchic chords. This boarding on the electronic oceans leaves Dreamers defenseless. A herd of arpeggios then sound the charge by creating an immense harmonic maze which gradually rises to drive out this circle and replace it by another vision of melodic rhythm which is inspired by the nocturnal ambiences of Klaus Schulze, period 85- 90, and Remy. The title-track comes to life with rubber balls hopping, taking care to leave a reverberation wave at their impacts. It's therefore a leaping rhythm that collects the strange mooings from the synth which also regurgitates reverberation lines filled with gall. Cosmic elements impose an approach that struggles with organic ones. Percussive rattlings peck the elastic membrane of Endless Space, while the synth resumes its role by injecting solos as discreet as whistlings in a storm. Based on this minimalist structure, the title-track takes on more tone with the arrival of a line of stoic but effective bass pulsations while the synth is still noble in its electronic presence. Far Away from Home reveals all the melancholy of its title with a synth and its nostalgic groans which cry on a beautiful lullaby at night.
ENDLESS SPACE contains great moments of music. It's an album equal to what Alba Ecstasy used to offer us, and this with the regularity of a monthly musical clock. It's more great than simply good! Mihail-Adrian Simion has a sense of rhythm and he knows how to defend the credibility of his titles with the right ambiences and always those rhythms and melodies which hang a souvenir in our ears.
Sylvain Lupari (June 26th, 2020) ***¾**
Available at Alba Ecstasy Bandcamp