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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Carbon Based Lifeforms Derelicts (2017)

Simply majestuous in its enveloppe of deep spacey vibes and neo-psybient

1 Accede 5:43 2 Derelicts 6:12 3 Clouds 4:30 4 Nattväsen 5:38 5 Equilibrium 8:56 6 Path of Least Resistance 6:40 7 780 Days 6:16 8 ~42° 4:55 9 Rayleigh Scatterers 5:12 10 Dodecahedron 8:43 11 Loss Aversion 5:12 12 Everwave 14:21 CBL Music

(CD/DDL 78:35) (V.F.) (Cosmic psybient, down-tempo)

For the fans of psybient and down-tempos, a Carbon Based Lifeforms' new release is a festivity for the ears, a new sound paint on the walls of our listening room. Two of the Swedish masters in the art of building soundscapes of an instrumental enchantment which allies the Scandinavian coldness and those a little more cosmic to forms of rhythms as smooth as slow, sometimes even firm beats, the duet Johannes Hedberg and Daniel Segerstad offers here a very solid opus with a sonic envelope as so unique as delicious which are like sound tales with very poignant orgasmic crescendos.

And Accede doesn't waste time too much in order to put our ears in appetite. The rhythm is livened up with good percussions and bass pulsations which are stimulated by stroboscopic strands. This fusion of rhythmic entities is carefully draped by multilayers of synth in the colors of the prism. A sober entrance which aims to be very inviting in this abounding universe of sounds and ambiences which is DERELICTS. The title-track rises to our ears with a very good down-tempo which is set on very nice and bewitching impulses of a well molded bass line. The stellar strata which encircle the music and structure the ambiences are weaved by thin lines of celestial voices. We even hear murmurs occasionally as well as narrations in Swedish. If the effects of psybient place the music of Carbon Based Lifeforms where it should be, the layers of guitars which roll innocently add a little more to this impressive sound flora which is rather harmonious. But the percussive effects! They are rich and joyous, here as everywhere in DERELICTS, feeding a structure which increases slightly the pace in its second phase. A wonderful piece of music which allies esotericism and sensuality. You don't know yet the universe of CBL? Start with this title! We dive into the meditative celestial bodies of the album with Clouds whose music, rich with its effects of atmospheres, represents with dignity the spirit of its title. The wealth of CBL music is situated at the level of details and of creativity around its phases of ambiences, as around the magnificent ethereal melody of Nattväsen. Livened up by the reflections of the sequences' lapping, the melody swirls like the one that we find in the small ballerinas which decorate our night tables. A soft line of bass espouses the rolls of the sequences while the percussions structures a mid-tempo as fluid as nervous. The synth strata shine with their aggressive colors while the voices, the murmurs and the talks are divided between virginal voices and a more aged one always exposing these contrasting fluids which make the charms of the neo-psychedelic universe of the down-tempos from Johannes Hedberg and Daniel Segerstad. Equilibrium offers another introduction of ambiences with a bass line which mumbles under a sky densely decorated by multilayers of synth in moiré colors The music gains in intensity and so respects our expectations with the so desired hatching of a good down-tempo, a little in a Hip-Hop style, solidly anchored by good percussions. Still here the effects, as organic as percussive or words, enhance the already rather abundant colors of Equilibrium.

Path of Least Resistance is a real storm of sounds, hidden murmurs and different effects trapped in a huge pile of synth lines. These vibes greatly seraphic pour, like waters of an enchanted brook, towards 780 Days. This title is another mini nirvana from DERELICTS. Hidden under a dense sound tundra, the ambiences are buried by a thick cloud of lines in colors as scarlet as these chirping of phantasmagorical birds in their housing of emerald. A movement of sequences draws a delicate phase of harmony which sparkles and oscillates by waltzing with their shadows. These elements weave a emotional phase whose crescendo is rather poignant. A bass line forges a slow tempo which inhales as the heart of an ogre master of the place. And suddenly, no more breaths! Only this fauna of sounds which sparkle between our ears, always very comfortable with this mass of lines in the colors of the Eden. A stroboscopic friction hangs on to our lobes of ear while the percussions tumble with heaviness. While I swear to hear riffs of guitar, the synthesized melody rolls in loops with its shadow, creating a harmonious overload which will become even denser as 780 Days takes refuge towards finale. Intense! And CBL starts the meter to zero with a title of spacey vibes in -42 °. Then Rayleigh Scatterers follows with a huge tempest of winds and drones where hangs onto it a down-tempo as fragile as the melody strummed on a keyboard of glass. A suave synth voice coos in the background, adding a touch of sensualism to the esoteric ideology of the title. And like in 780 Days, the first moments of Dodecahedron decode a veil of ambiences before the title strikes us with a 2nd part which is just as much remarkable. Loss Aversion is of the same level of intensity, except that the rhythm is as well heavy as slow and pierces us of an incredible overload of emotions. This title is to DERELICTS what the incredibly overwhelming Last Step in Vacuum was to the astonishing Until We Meet the Sky by Solar Fields. Everwave covers this overload of emotion with a long phase of ambient moods which stimulates our appetite to re-hear this Carbon Based Lifeforms' last monument in music.

Sylvain Lupari (November 6th, 2017) ****½*

Available at Carbon Based Lifeforms' Bandcamp