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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

ARCANE: Polaris (2021)

Top EM! Let just hope there will be such a rendezvous at the end of 2022!

1 Sky Ride (1983) 5:04

2 Lawman (1988) 4:45

3 Polaris (1984) 5:07

4 Galaxy Runner (1987) 6:34

(DDL E.P. 21:30) (V.F.)

(Harmonic sequencer-based EM)

Arcane had created quite a stir when it had mentioned that its creator, Paul Lawler, was now going to devote himself to making music for films and/or documentaries. We thought that the Arcane adventure had been forgotten. And what was the good news when this same Paul, now father of a beautiful little girl, had some old electronic music (EM) forgotten somewhere in his recording tapes. Tracks dating from the pre Arcane era with 4 compositions from the 80's that Paul has brought up to date and where the influences of Tangerine Dream are still present, but less dominant. POLARIS is a good little E.P. exceeding 20 minutes of a lively and melodic EM as Paul knows how to do so.

Sky Ride features a pulsating rhythm with rubber coated jumping keys that bounce around with a croaking effect in the tone. The synth layers are melodic and transcend their very Vangelis-like reaches with beautiful melodic lines, while the rhythm annexes electronic percussions to its crisp, curt flow that follows the harmonic tangent of the synth layers. A very catchy track where even the multiple voice effects do not manage to undo its charm. Lawman is a track without story. Its opening is in suspense mode with fluty pads on an uncertain rhythm, well pounded by solid percussions whose echo ends with hand claps. The orchestrations are well dosed and encircle well the fluty melody of the synth. Intro, verses, chorus and finale; Paul Lawler is faithful to his style of composing. The musician-synthesist has always had a knack for creating fantastic melody lines and the title-track is among one of his best. Initially, the rhythm comes to life on a multitude of arpeggio lines with intertwined fates. Fluid as jerky, it convulses on rolls of percussions and under the divine humming of a band of college students studying harmonies. They are celestial, even if almost mute. The rest...? You just have to hear it, it's worth all the words! After an opening focused on intergalactic sound effects, a bass chord casts a cinematic aura on the opening of Galaxy Runner. Wooden knock-knocks hang in the air until percussion docks in and drives this final track from the E.P. POLARIS into another beautiful fusion of sequenced rhythm and synthesized melody. Supported in a rock-electronic pattern and well-fed by percussions, the track exploits (intro, verses, chorus and finale) a beautiful almost symphonic melody with a synth blowing solos and harmony over a keyboard with sharp riffs. Yeah, a good little gift for the end of the year 2021 by Arcane. Hope there will be such a rendezvous at the end of this year 😊

Sylvain Lupari (January 9th, 2022) *****

Available at Paul Lawler Music Bandcamp

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