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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

ALBA ECSTASY: Synergy (2017)

Updated: Aug 31, 2019

“Among these constant progressions of the minimalist Rumanian School rhythms, Synergy let hear a very sweet new psychedelic frontier which sounds so nice to the ears”

1 Side Effect 4:48 2 Synergy 15:36 3 The Circle 3:36 4 No Tears to Cry 13:01 5 Motricity 8:50 Alba Ecstasy Music

(DDL 45:51) (V.F.) (Mix of Vintage, New Berlin and Roumanian Schools)

I began back to front. With Sublunary, another Alba Ecstasy's sonic feast. SYNERGY is the 3rd album of the Rumanian synth wizard since the beginning of 2017, and I didn't count in this list the E.P. Seven Earths which was released at the beginning of 2017. If we do the math, SYNERGY went out in June, thus Mihail Adrian Simion produces well and well a complete album of EM in every 2 months. Bah... I have already spoken to you about the prolificacy of this artist so many times, as well as of his talent. This said, know that this album hides too another magnificent marvel of the electronic minimalist art and some rather interesting things to be put in our eardrums.

Very undisciplined arpeggios jump in all directions from the opening of Side Effect. Resonant pulsations welcome this armada of sound injections with a rhythm of trance which is tempted by the Techno. The chants of the synths are like those of a cardinal which tries his luck with Arabic harmonies. In this conclave of tones and split up harmonies, Side Effect sets up a spasmodic approach totally stripped of sensibility. A kind of electronic Trash Hip-Hop where gleam white noises and sound graffiti, even some psychedelic effects as we find almost everywhere in the rather multicolored universe of SYNERGY. And as if this armoring of sounds wasn't enough, Mihail Adrian Simion scatters blades of synth doped by dramatic, otherwise eclectic, effects. A good opening! The title-track possesses the charms of Berlin School with an insane movement of the sequencer which creates a line of circular rhythm swirling. An electronic machine breathes in the background, forging an alarming illusion. While the percussions get graft to this minimalist structure, a very good and creative synth decorates this wild rhythmic anthem with a pond of melodies which belong to the repertoire of the progressive rock world of the 70's. Divided by the rivalry of the fluid sequences and the stoical pulsating beats, the structure of rhythm takes a wilder tangent with a massive arrival of sequences which skip like a thick cloud of blinking of lashes. Playing on the variances of its rhythm, Synergy inhales this gargantuan madness of Klaus Schulze in his MIDI era with harmonies and arrangements which gave a soul to the coldness of these new instruments which were going to change the electronic universe forever. Technician and outstanding man of studio, Mihail Adrian Simion manages with a disarming ease this title which seeks for the borders of neo psychedelic.

Is Alba Ecstasy capable of tenderness? Not completely and it's in this approach of rhythm knotted around multiple minimalist spasms that The Circle tries such a movement. I liked it and that does sound very cosmic Indra. No Tears to Cry is the highlight of SYNERGY. Its introduction is sculpted delicately by crystalline arpeggios which sparkle like the thousand reflections of Klaus Schulze's Mirage. A pulsating movement propels an impatient, but mainly ambient, rhythm. It's the multiple crisscrossed movements of the sequencer which creates the illusion of fluid rhythm circulating in a gyrating crossroads. Electronic elements instigate our curiosity, such of the rattlers of a shaman who desires the state of hypnosis of his patient. The percussions get in and hammer a linear structure from where escape some nice stroboscopic membranes, while the synth throws at us of wonderful solos, as spectral as cosmic. Alba Ecstasy brings very sensitive nuances to this structure of rhythm which enchants as much as those solos seduce in a vision which also looks for the borders of the new psychedelic. Mesmerizing and I want more! Motricity ends this album with a horde of sequenced arpeggios which teem around the hesitation of a half-formed bass line. The movement is spasmodic and rises continual stroboscopic impulses which go and come on the new spasms of a structure which always looks for its hatching. It's what happens at the door of the 3 minutes with the arrival of crazy and agitated percussions which maintain the disheveled structure of Motricity in its spasmodic element.

I enjoyed a lot the universe of SYNERGY another solid album by Alba Ecstasy. Set apart some others delicious minimalist structures of the Rumanian School style, Mihail Adrian Simion injects in this album some psychedelic elements which are well measured, and which arouse the curiosity of our ears. As usual, the slow progression of the rhythms and the mergers towards the morphic Techno genre remain mesmerizing. And with the solos which abound here! No doubts, we are in a big Mass of EM …

Sylvain Lupari (September 13th, 2017) ***¾**

Available at Alba Ecstasy Bandcamp

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