BOUVETOYA: Super High Frequency (2016)
“With its load of Mellotron winds and old organ tones, Super High Frequency draws pieces of architectures of atmospheres which will charm the fans of an old era”
1 The Apollo Question 4:08 2 Frequent Modulations 13:32 3 Project A 3:26 4 Bad Robot 4:16 5 The Hobo of the Skies 15:48 6 Beyond the Visceral Labyrinth 5:48 7 The Great Eastern at Heart's Content 17:21 8 Valentina Calling 5:15 SynGate Wave – CD-r MJ05
(CD-r/DDL 69:34) (V.F.) (Mix of Electronica rhythms trapped in B.S. moods)
The advantage of the Internet downloads is this freedom that appropriated the artists to put their fantasies, their stories and/or their visions into music. So, the doors of accessibility are even big absentees. I have this reflection because I am not certain that this last album of Bouvetoya would have found buyer without this new opportunity of free creation which is the foundation of progressive EM. And I don't say that
SUPER HIGH FREQUENCY is a bad album. I would rather say that it's a nice album where the Mellotron draws pieces of architectures of atmospheres which will know how to charm the fans of the old era. Except that with Michael Jones there is nothing really set in stone!
The Apollo Question begins the last fantasy of Bouvetoya with a thick cloud of super high frequencies which wave and intertwine in a slow morphic ballet where the momentums of pulsations and the gravitational chords perturb an ambiosonic peace of mind which haunts the sense of hearing. These keyboard chords will eventually weave a soft melodious from which the quiet beams of passivity are strained by the concert of high frequencies. The title dives quickly into nothingness, towards the 3:30 minutes, before being reborn in a more spectral dimension. This very ambiospherical opening is the main veil of tenebrous ambiences which will sets the tone to this strange voyage through frequencies that Michael Jones serves us. And it leads us to Frequent Modulations, the first jewel of the last one Bouvetoya. But it also asks for a little of patience, here as on the superb The Hobo of the Skies, in order to discover all of its charming dimension. Cracklings, noises of sound turbulence, winds and woosh as well as nasal voices fill its opening. Slow layers, disguised in tones of old organ, are freeing mixed and sibylline harmonies which flood our ears with delight before a line of sequences putting down a spasmodic structure which quivers in this bed of layers from the past. A line of pulsation draws a vampiric wave while the layers of old organ filled the harmonious and the dark side of Frequent Modulations. We are in full Berlin School of the years vintages with this title which offers 4 minutes of pure electronic rhythm before that a Mellotron flute moderates the enthusiasm of Frequent Modulations which finds refuge beneath the slow layers of its opening.
Project A is the most accessible title, although Beyond the Visceral Labyrinth is not so far, with a quite nice fragile melody which spreads its twinkling arpeggios on a structure of cosmic down-tempo. It's the kind of track to which we tie our ears right on the spot and gives us the desire to move a little the hips, immediately. We stay in the field of Electronica with the rather dislocated beat of Bad Robot which explodes its spinal with spasmodic beatings in a removable magma of growls and gurgling beneath the high frequencies which wind up and twist like a thick cloud of big sonic worms. Effective, even if the mixing (I hate the way here the way that Michael Jones ends the music here) leaves me a bitter tone between the ears. After an intro fed by amphibian lines which bask under the burning beams of high frequencies, an intro of more than 6 minutes, The Hobo of the Skies spits a short structure of electronic rhythm of the Stratosfear years, before withdrawing in the bed of its introduction. Here the patience to discover as much the rhythms as the atmospheres becomes the sinews of war. Less effective than Project A, Beyond the Visceral Labyrinth is a nice little title which seduces rather quickly. I don't know why, but I began thinking of Synergy from here! Faithful to the two other long structures of SUPER HIGH FREQUENCY, The Great Eastern at Heart's Content begins very slowly before revealing its structure of rhythm, which is closer of the Electronica style here, at around the 11th minute. The intro is loaded of layers in tones of old organ and of noises of frequencies and the rhythm which goes from it lives on a meshing of sequences and bass sequences which oscillates and beats under a concert of spectral waves. The rhythm, of a length of 5 minutes, wins in velocity, as well as the chants of cosmic cybernetic whales, before fainting in the last minute The Great Eastern at Heart's Content. Valentina Calling ends this album a little like The Apollo Question has begun it, except that here the melody is more evasive.
The strength of SUPER HIGH FREQUENCY becomes its Achilles' heel, either its lack of finish. If the moments of ambiences are very wrapping, the rhythms sound sometimes stripped in this immense wall of high frequencies. The sound wealth is doubtless here, both at the level of the rhythms and the melodies as the atmospheres. I also like this vision of offering a beautiful pallet of rhythms which travel between the borders of EM without the purists of the Berlin School style is offended. And I push my reflection farther by imagining that if this last album of Bouvetoya would have been mixed on the foundations of Cords by Synergy, the result would have been as much brilliant here. A sign of an album with an unlimited potential!
Sylvain Lupari (August 9th, 2016) *****
Available at SynGate Bandcamp