“This is a solid album that reserves us as many charms as only Rayment accustomed us to”
1 Phases of Equilibrium 15:17
2 Composure in a Dreamlike State 9:47
3 Motion in a Sensory Plane 8:27
4 Counterbalance 6:38
5 Calmness in Symmetry 10:22
(CD-(r)/DDL 50:33) (V.F.)
(E-Rock, New Berlin School)
With its Radio Hit that transports us beyond dreams in the last part of Phases of Equilibrium, Colin Rayment transports the listener to that zone where memories cross the fog of our subconscious. In fact, the English synthesist hits hard with his latest opus EQUILIBRIUM! So much so, that this seductive melodic rhythm phase haunts, with a few nuances, the other structures of the album. The discovery of EQUILIBRIUM transports us as far as the doors of the excellent Underwater Sunlight of Tangerine Dream. Notably by the structure of Song of the Whale that extends its musical memories in variations that do not manage to get away from its rhythmic, melodic and emotional flavors.
It's with an opening that makes shining the distant musical perfumes of The Alan Parsons Project, the I Robot album, that Phases of Equilibrium accosts our ears. The rhythm which follows marries an organic texture with rubbery impulses which let hear the effect of a dialogue between springs. A tender synth layer envelops this momentum, which is now supported by a line of bass sequences that hops around in a hurry. This electronic tam-tam structures the first part of this first track where the sound memories of Tangerine Dream in Near Dark rise to our ears with the presence of an electric guitar. Its harmonies, like its riffs! Longest track of this EQUILIBRIUM, Phases of Equilibrium has all that a catchy electronic rhythm can offer. Its first part evaporates in arcs of drones that start to buzz a bit after the 4th minute. Resonant shadows, spectral wails and droning winds fill the next 5 minutes of this track which takes its second rhythmic flight 30 seconds after the 9th minute in a 3rd part conceived around the theme of Stranger Things. It's 5 minutes of pure happiness! A sibylline wave blows on the introduction of Composure in a Dreamlike. The second one, more emotional, stimulates the rhythm of the sequencer which extends a bumpy structure. A handful of acrylic blue arpeggios dance with these bumping bass sequences in a floorless rhythmic structure until another line drums a sustained pulsating rhythm that becomes more animated. The rhythm is nervous, you can even hear it quavering, with this mesh of cadenced chords spreading its percussive colors in a way that accommodates the prismatic chant of the synthesizer. Like a sound architect, Colin Rayment embellishes this minimalist structure with chord that dances between the evasive synth harmonies and some keyboard riffs, stimulating a listening experience that perceives the influence of the musical theme of that great Netflix series. Ditto for the structure of Counterbalance, whose heavy, vivid oscillations are bludgeoned by percussions that bounce off the tarmac of the skins. Another solid electronic rock whose spectral synth vapors enhance the listening pleasure.
Fluttering around at good speed, the rhythm structure of Motion in a Sensory Plane is like a dance of dragonflies whose metallic wings clash on a bed of percussions that end up structuring a good electronic rock. The strength of this title lies in the emotions unleashed by the guitar which, without joining the emotional acuity of Edgar Froese in Song of the Whale, seems to be conceived in the reminiscences of this title. A perception that is also attached to the rhythmic structures of Motion in a Sensory Plane and Composure in a Dreamlike. Calmness in Symmetry offers an ambient procession of bouncy limpid arpeggios that make chime a tune divided between Tubular Bells and Halloween. Little by little, the melody detaches itself from its first imprints to gambol like the uncertain steps of a Bambi on a frozen pond. It glitters in this wavering lunar choreography that harmoniously develops its intensity, as much rhythmic as atmospheric, under a subtle veil of humming. This obscure veil introduces a heavier, more intense ambient rhythmic framework in a finale where the spectral airs of the synth confirm that the perfect balance remains a vague notion that will always escape us.
Sylvain Lupari (August 17th, 2022) ****½*
Available at SynGate Bandcamp