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  • Sylvain Lupari

ALBA ECSTASY: To Nowhere and Back (2018)

Updated: Jul 29, 2019

“This is a good AE album with nice sequencing patterns in tracks which are very easy to catch and others which needs extra work”

1 In Tensio 4:14 2 Dawning of a Sun 12:48 3 Alpha Orionis 9:06 4 The Slope 9:08 5 Jupiter's Walz 8:17 Alba Ecstasy Music (DDL 43:34) (Berlin School) (V.F.)

TO NOWHERE AND BACK is the second album of original music of Alba Ecstasy this year. I was reviewing it and at the same moment a third album came out; Bergenon. Which just goes to show that the Rumanian synthesist remains again and always very productive. And this is a good and fair album which follows the mainlines of his repertoire with a touch more Vangelis at the level of the synths and a more personal approach at the level of the sequences which have more organic colors on this album. It's not the album which will mark history but it remains a decent album with very good time on structures which lean on the minimalist themes known of Alba Ecstasy. In Tensio begins with a series of waving waves on which hook some strands and electronic chirpings. The introduction is sober with feelings in halftones when a muted and a violent eruption of the sequencer propels a structure which moves forward like the trots of a horse in mode; catch me if you can. With about 13 minutes in the meter, we guess that Dawning of has Sun will be an evolutionary title. Light breezes and buzzing breaths decorate a delicate introduction where roam dreams of synth. It's a good intro with a flavor of Vangelis and where is waking up a charming lullaby played by a sequencer which loosens another idea, a more rhythmic one. The movement is zigzagging and breaks through some ample figures of 8 crisscrossed which come get unsoldered to form only one line of rhythm supported by its series of light jolts. The synth scatters musing and solos which seem insipid versus this skeleton of rhythm which spreads sometimes a delicious anarchy in a structure a bit paranoiac which questions to these beautiful moments of nightmares put in music by Klaus Schulze, periods to Inter*Face to En=Trance or still Remy in his epic Exhibition Of Dreams. It's that kind of title which asks for more listens before we tame it like it needs because Alba Ecstasy brings to it a great deal of nuances, so much in the rhythm as in the ambiences which are completely in the tone. Alpha Orionis is the first track to charm my ears straight away on this TO NOWHERE AND BACK. Always dipped into a rich and versatile synthetic decor, the rhythm is of the kind pulsatory with a meshing of bass sequences and organic sequences which answer a vertical structure of rhythm where land good synth solos. These solos, as well as the floating harmonies, sound very Vangelis while the rhythm forces our eardrums with these multiple nuances and organic additions which make it even more sparkling to our ears which notice hardly its constant velocity. Some very good Alba Ecstasy! The Slope begins with a sound arsenal which imitates a big sighing ogre of gargantuan one laziness. Semi-conscious, he daydreams of unicorns grazing truffles in his domain abounding in big rabbits which begin running as soon as the wind turns and as soon as the ambiences become unclear. It's the turn to unicorns to start galloping, the pace is peaceful at the beginning and torrential afterward, with this big imaginary and invisible ogre who blows the fright in its meadow become dark forest where get hoot strange singings of nocturnal raptors. Exhausted, the ogre falls asleep again in front of our ears still stunned. Jupiter's Walz is another little jewel where trots a bumpy rhythm and from which every heavy step seems to free a mocking duck. A mid-tempo, not too much far from the up-tempo, the rhythm skips and cackles with a nice color in the organic sequences and others colors which adorn a sky colorfull of long sonic jets. A harmonious touch releases itself towards a finale which evaporates in its misty and vaporous essences. Concluding so an album which in the end one listens to it with great pleasure. Sylvain Lupari (March 24th, 2018) ***½**

SynthSequences.com

Available on Alba Ecstasy' Bandcamp

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

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