BEYOND BERLIN: Cosmic Nights (2013)
“This is a great cosmic rock album of the analog years when the dreamy rhythms of Klaus Schulze failed to cross the chthonian moods of Tangerine Dream”
1 DA14 22:13 2 Clippings 18:12 3 Brussels Return 21:16 4 Clippings - Reprise 5:32 Beyond Berlin Music
(DDL 67:19) (V.F.) (Berlin School and Cosmic Rock)
Oh that we find beautiful EM around the webs of Internet. Like this Beyond Berlin's MUSIC FOR COSMIC NIGHTS which has passed totally under my radar in 2013. And it's undoubtedly one of very beautiful surprises of this year. Evidently with such a name, Beyond Berlin, eyebrows swell of skepticism, but the ears always remain so curious. And they still ask for more of it, even after all those years. Recorded within the framework of the cosmic nights' Festival at the Planetarium of Brussels on May 17th 2013, this album is a real ode to Berlin School of the analog years when the dreamy rhythms of Klaus Schulze failed to cross the chthonian ambiences of Tangerine Dream. Rene de Bakker and Martin Peters make us travel between Timewind and Phaedra in cosmic moods that awaken in us the need to listen the music of Jean Michel Jarre. But the most attractive element of is without a doubt the magnificent bridges of sequences which modify the courses of static rhythms cut out by keys and their lively and impromptu movements.
The drizzle dripping along the walls of an oozing cave offer their crystal pearls to a brass band of synths and their slow and wrapping chants filled by aromas of an apocalyptic organ. Synth waves are rolling with a soft effect of backwash whereas that the eschatological singings smother the lapping of drops in suspension, shaping an introduction from which the macabre pattern brings us silently towards a delicate dance of jumping keys. Tenuous in a Mephistophelian membrane, the rhythm of DA14 sparkles and skips more than it moves. The movement is static and hypnotic with keys shining of harmonic tones as clear as marbles clacking on a conveyor. Softly, this string of sequences scatters its keys which spread weak adjacent rhythmic glows that the chloroformed shrouds of the synths are caressing of their sweetness. Another line of sequences emerges from this shining fog. We will hear a weak oneiric chant which rolls in loop on a delicate line of rhythm which makes dance its keys skipping like feet of Bambi on an ice-cold pond. The dance of sequences which follows, and its keys skipping in the shadows of others, is shaping those fabulous movements of sequenced canons and reminds the nice era of Timewind. Simply bewitching! Synth lines are rolling like cosmic waves on the intro of Clippings. This time, the onset of the rhythm is hastier. It's a good movement of sequences which skip in harmony with an ambient rhythm that synth waves wrap of an astral tenderness and of very melancholic breezes. The movement is very cosmic. But it starts to stir a little after the 7 minutes point with keys which jump and slam. Another line of bass sequences swirls and sneaks around between the bangings, creating a protean rhythmic motif among which the kicks and jolts are bursting in a pattern always rather cosmic. There the synths solos and the breezes of cosmic particles are reminiscent of Jean Michel Jarre's cosmic universe. Afterward Rene de Bakker and Martin Peters offer us a race about the art of sequencing with keys which skip and tumble under the mocking chants of the synths which sometimes awaken vague memories of the Dream. Brussels Return is the most ambient music piece of MUSIC FOR COSMIC NIGHTS, and this even with some great and delicate movements of the sequencers which embroider static and harmonious rhythms. They swirl in orbit, being coated and sucked up by synth waves which roll and coo in soft astral chants. You have to hear all the nuances with a good set of earphones. Wrapping and magnetizing! Clippings - Reprise takes back the very livened up portion of Clippings. It's a beautiful way to be entailed right away in the grooves of an attractive album which shows that the retro Berlin School genre has still some more charms to make listen. A great cosmic rock album! I'm looking forward to the following one.
Sylvain Lupari (March 20th, 2014) ****½*
Available at Beyond Berlin Bandcamp