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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

ALLUSTE: Digital Age (2011)

Updated: Jan 21, 2021

Digital Age is the meeting point between Baffo Banfi, Software, Klangwelt and Tangerine Dream

Digital I 5:32

Digital II 7:26

Digital III 8:12

Digital IV 8:31

Digital V 6:55

Digital VI 8:44

Digital VII 5:37

Digital VIII 9:50

Digital XI 7:59

Digital X 8:16

(DDL 77:04) (V.F.)

(New Berlin School)

Here is a 4th opus from the Italian synth man Alluste that he entirely made of synth's software and plug-ins. The result is an album which embraces the cosmic rhythms of Software on sequenced impulses that will put a smile on the visage of Tangerine Dream's fans. A little as its title indicates, DIGITAL AGE is a good incursion in the digital world where melodies can sometimes have warm appearances.

A synth pushes charming cooings on the opening of Digital I, introducing fine and sharp melodies which contort in the nest of delicate crystalline arpeggios. These sequenced arpeggios spin of an uncertain approach, floating inside a mixture of twisted waves and metallic mist to lean on a heavy sequence which gallops towards a vertical movement. Between the synthetic and cosmic universe of Software and Tangerine Dream's heavy rhythms and sequencing patterns, DIGITAL AGE proposes a series of 10 titles where ambiences and rhythms merge in a good morphic phases. I think in particular of Digital III and its rhythm which hiccups sneakily, increasing a bit a pace hushed by a smooth lunar synth, to Digital IV, Digital VI and Digital IX which are rocking slowly in the shade of a threatening sequenced progression. Digital II is a little pearl which reminds me the oneiric universe of Spheric Music's Dreams of My Space. It's soft, a bit sad and very romantic with the sustained synth breaths which drag in a cosmic mist and its delicate glass arpeggios which increase slowly on a vertical structure. This carousel of sequences might spin all around this static movement that it doesn't mask at any moments its poetic depth. It's very good and it's heading straight away to my IPod to adorn my night of sleeps.

Digital V is doubtless the most musical and most poetic piece on this Alluste second work. The whole thing starts with threatening hoops which float in a cosmos from where are escaping brief fragments of an unfinished melodies. Carillons sparkle. Pushed by absent winds they go towards a lonely piano which escorts the contemplative breaths of a poetic synth, creating a superb lunar melody which swells out harmonies with a gradation orchestrated by a powerful bass line and a progressive sequential movement. And Digital V overturns into a heavy and circular rhythm with good nervous sequences which crisscross its lines in a curious rhythmic ballet. It's very good and quite impressive for an album made from a PC. After a slow morphic intro Digital VII is rising itself by a great sequenced approach which pounds in the shade of nice lunar pads. The movement is displaying with a powerful loudness to end in a finale which is not without recalling Tangerine Dream and its brilliant Silver Scale. The same pattern is outlined on Digital VIII, by far the best track of this album with a more mordant sequential movement. A movement which pulses heavily and whose hypnotic strikings beat over an iridescent cloud to face another movement built on a circular gallops and sharpness solos. It's very good and especially very heavy. Digital X offers a variation on the same theme with a sequential approach which appears out of a dense cosmic cloud to offer one bewitching movement of rhythm which makes sequences crisscrossing in a good melodious approach and which are going to feed themselves in the nest of heavier and more incisive sequences which lead this hypnotic circular movement towards the borders of the space.

A little like Gustavo Jobim, Alluste makes his compositions at home with his digital equipment. And like Gustavo Jobim, the synthesist demonstrates an excellent potential at the level of composition and the melodious approaches. DIGITAL AGE is the meeting point between Baffo Banfi and his jerky rhythmic approaches, Software and their cosmic ambience which wraps rhythms and sequences, Tangerine Dream and its powerful sequence rides as well as Klangwelt for the melodious approaches. All in all, we have to admit that's an interesting musical cocktail where only misses a zest of experiment at the level of mastering with the fine touch of a Ron Boots or Robert Schroeder to give nobility to a very beautiful effort which shows very good perspective.

Sylvain Lupari (December 24th, 2001) ***½**

Available at Alluste Bandcamp

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