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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Alpha Wave Movement Soniq Variants (2011)

Updated: Nov 3, 2022

I must say that I was amazingly pleased by all the delicacy that is hiding behind the progressive and insistent rhythms of this album

1 Sundial West 10:31

2 Eternal Panorama 7:17

3 Transwave Oscillations 7:25

4 Sustained Environment 3:45

5 Sweeping the Soniq Spectrum 9:00

6 Dynamic Atmosphere 9:00

7 Wave Gliding 3:59

8 Contours & Cloudforms 8:50

(CD/DDL 55:59) (V.F.)

(Pacific School)

The more I discover the music of Alpha Wave Movement, the more I have the impression that I missed something over the years where I didn't know yet him nor his music. Not that the music of Gregory Kyryluk is genius, but because it's a skillful dosage between soft ethereal ambiences, the mysticism of American tribal and soundscapes as well as deserts' specters which it shakes ceaselessly due to its synth incantations and percussions with multiple tones. It's still under the spell of Cosmic Mandala, of its spasmodic sequenced rhythms, its attractive percussions and hybrid synth layers that I come to explore SONIQ VARIANT. Amazing, Gregory Kyryluk's latest work is played with the Ensoniq electronic equipment. These synths are renowned for their diversities and sound charismas were conceived at the end of the 80's and Gregory Kyryluk toys with them brilliantly on a genuinely nice album where sequences and percussions dance on good structures of a most colored musical landscape.

Fine sequences, like tom-toms hits, alternate delicately the pace and shape a soft ethereal procession on the opening of Sundial West. A discreet flute accompanies this ascending march supported by fine nasal arpeggios which sparkle in a musical landscape which could be situated quite well as Steve Roach's Destination Beyond. Heavy synth breezes criss-cross twinkling harmonies whereas angelic choirs hum beneath rattling style percussions, synth which rotate on the rhythm of sequences and silky mystic mists layers of the mountainous tops. A nice hypnotic and mesmerizing movement, Sundial West accelerates gradually its pace beneath a good musical progression where the musical wealth of the Ensoniq synth enriches a sound fauna to thousand artistic possibilities. With its percussions which slam around keyboard keys which float and sparkle, Eternal Panorama can only remind Steve Roach's musical and tribal landscapes. A great track with synth strata which floats and falls as leaves under a light breeze which frees anemic breathes around a rosary of chords sparkling in a spring mist. Transwave Oscillations presents a short ambient intro where sharp and spectral breezes are melting into twinkling chords. Chords of a resonant sequencer are waddling beneath a mellotron mist whereas series of wavy notes are escaping from it to sway hips under strikes of congas and bongos. The rhythm becomes abrupt and edgy, whereas Transwave Oscillations derives between two rhythms, tribal percussions and arpeggios which sparkle such as serpentines lost in a world where chords become as scattered as percussions and the sequenced keys.

After the ambient and tribal Sustained Environment, which floats under nice mellotron layers, Sweeping the Soniq Spectrum offers us a very nice musical intro where chimes with piercing sound prisms swirl lasciviously. Quietly, Sweeping the Soniq Spectrum is waking up with soft nasal synth breezes à la Vangelis and slender resonant lines which sing under fine manual percussions. Towards the 5th minute the tempo modifies abruptly its axis to borrow a structure which waves with more velocity and where keyboard keys are entangling with more virile percussions. It's a powerful rhythm which goes growing under a mixture of synth breezes and solos which are harmonizing with a zest of free jazz style. This is another robust track on this album, quite as Dynamic Atmosphere which offers the same kind of structure with its tribal rhythms in constants permutations and with more ethereal and level-headed passages. Soft and suave, Wave Gliding flickers of its half rhythmic wings on a hybrid structure where the rhythm implodes beneath good strata of a warm synth. A nice soft and nervous track which offers good deployments both at the level of the still sequences and of the wrapping synth layers. Contours & Cloudforms ends with a soft melodious intro where delicate arpeggios adopt a bewitching hypnotic circular movement. The movement is disrupted by heavy threatening waves but never explode, content to take the shape of the soft rhythms which are the basis of this album with the crystal arpeggios which shine with an astonishing musicality under the breaths of a synth with aromas of the desert and its strange percussions which shape the ghosts of the dunes.

I have to admit that I was amazingly surprised by all the delicacy that is hiding behind the progressive, and sometimes insistent, rhythms of SONIQ VARIANT. I don't know if it has to do with Ensoniq synths and software, but this Alpha Wave Movement's last album is of a surprising musicality. A music livened up by good sequences and layers of an oneiric synth which doesn't stop reminding me of Steve Roach's tribal universe with some incursions in the musical one of Patrick O'Hearn, at the level of those twinkling arpeggios. A particularly good album to which one listens to it as we dream, imprints of a mesmerizing synth harmony. A universe very personal to Gregory Kyryluk!

Sylvain Lupari (March 11th, 2013) ***½**

Available at Harmonic Resonance Recordings Bandcamp

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