Baaden & Cremer Aufbruch (2019)
Updated: Jan 9
“Here's another strong surprise as it happens every year and which makes me love so much this kind of music”
1 Das Lebenselixier 14:47 2 The Rise and the Fall of Proxima Centauri Pt II 4:37 3 Kurz Vor Dem Aufbruch 4:09 4 Moonglow 12:07 5 Das Möbiusband 15:21
6 Steamroller on the Interstellar Highway 7:57
(CD-R/DDL 58:58) (V.F.)
(New Berlin School)
I'm listening this album in loops for a couple of days! In this attractive universe of EM where everything is alike and nothing is exactly the same, or at least, there are times when new artists come up with a different vision that transcends gender. It's a bit much the story of AUFBRUCH from the German duo Baaden & Cremer. Not really that it transcends the genres but plunges with disconcerting ease to bring them all together in its 6 chapters. The roots of this first album collaboration between Uwe Cremer and Andreas Baaden go back as far as 2008 when the two musicians met, virtually, on MySpace. Then came jam sessions whose ideas will be on this album and whose mastering was completed by Bernd Scholl. Produced and distributed by his label MellowJet Records, AUFBRUCH offers a very wide range of styles that are all related to the German musical universe. Each chapter here is a gateway to universes that are familiar to us, but with just enough differences to make sure they are not too much alike. From Software to Ashra with winks to modern Klaus Schulze and Mind Over Matter, AUFBRUCH offers a very good 60 minutes of a ME filled with a thousand and one charms.
Do you like these soft morphic ballads, like in Software's? You will be well served with Das Lebenselixier! Breezes from a cave from which water oozes are paving our ears towards its road in a layer of sharp noises, a din. A veil of orchestrations falls, and a delicate movement of the sequencer sculpts one of those ambient rhythms that frolic in an ascending axis with the principle of; 1 you go up and 2 you go down. Wrapped in a wadding with plump seams, this rhythm is bass tone sequencing. Another line of sequences tinkles in the background, like this Halloween masks shaker on a Mardi-Gras evening. The orchestrations have some very beautiful impulses of emotion in a seraphic envelope that is very cosmic and where these crystal tones come from those samples of the 80's and the 90's. Electronic effects scribble the wall of atmospheres with some explosive springs, allegorical twists, resonant chords and/or musical solos. These sequences that danced like those of Halloween spells come back with more impact in the second half of Das Lebenselixier which accepts this ambient velocity and whose tranquil feverishness of this new phase of rhythm becomes also the bed of many sound effects, as melodious than disparate. A Software track forgotten somewhere? It sounds like such! The musical envelope is as rich as it is diversified with multilayer of synth lines and of orchestrations as well as multiline lines of electronic effects on a very Berliner vision at the level of rhythm. These elements, regardless of their durations, are the basis of each title in AUFBRUCH. The Rise and the Fall of Proxima Centauri Pt II is a title of noisy atmospheres with some dissonant effects roughly drawn by a bank of samplings and by the resonances of pulsating sequences. The guitar injects very good solos in this title which is a bit short. I wonder where is the first part? Another short title, Kurz Vor Dem Aufbruch may be reminiscent of the early Teutonic rhythms of Kraftwerk, or Neu! because of the guitar. The rhythm is not complicated and vey catchy, while the moods plunge us into the vintage years or in the psychedelic rock of the late 60's, early 70's.
After an introduction proper to vintage cosmic rock, Moonglow proposes a sneaky rhythm which sways in a universe of ethereal haze. The guitar drops chords which adorn this musical panorama of a vintage decor, a bit like the Motown years. The ambiences and the structure change little by little in order to fall into a heavy and dark ambient rock which is tortured by heavy guitar' riffs, a bit psychedelic and sometimes more musical. The guitar also flows very good solos in this title that sounds more psychedelic rock of the 60's than of EM of the 70's. If I had to choose the most beautiful title of this first album of Baaden & Cremer, I would opt for Das Möbiusband which sounds quite like Ashra of the years Blackouts to Correlations. The rhythm is vaguely jerky and inspires these kinds of morphic semi-trances, like those dances where we swing the hips with rotational movements of our soft body on drugs which seemed to be sucked up by vacuum, by a slight smoke grenade swirl. The guitar sounds like that of Manuel Göttsching and even the percussions are very like Harald Grosskopf's. The music range is very large, and strongly impregnated with the perfumes of the German music pioneers of the 70's. It misses only the progressive German rock on AUFBRUCH! Well, it's done with the very diversified, maybe a little too much, Steamroller on the Interstellar Highway which melts a Ballroom Blitz kind of rock to the clattering percussions of Gary Numan. And poof! It's a guitar in mode Klaus-Hoffmann Hoock that spits its demons in a structure that calms down a bit, in order to expel this desire of Deep Purple's impulses, and ignites itself in a short phase where I remember Dead Babies, from Alice Cooper, before the music concludes with a strong progressive electronic rock where the perfumes of Frank Dorritke and even of Michael Schenker travel without hold. Too many styles for so little time, but it's still seductive. Possibly the only weak link in AUFBRUCH! It's not that bad, no?
Sylvain Lupari (May 2nd, 2019) ****½*
Available at MellowJet Records