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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

CREATE: Lost on an Island of Adventure (2008)

Updated: Nov 20, 2021

Lost is one of those works that must be savored slowly to grasp all its dimensions

1 Just Above the Surface 17:28

2 Out of Bounds 9:45

3 Follow the Shoreline 11:28

4 Run for Cover 5:52

5 This Island Life 8:47

6 Paradise 12:28

7 Heaven Waits (for Grandad) 4:52

(CD/DDL 70:42) (V.F.)

(England School)

Welcome to the complex world of Create. Over the years, this fervent follower of Air Sculpture and Tangerine Dream has forged a unique style with his nasal synth and strident laments in a nebulous sonic environment where rhythm hardly carves out its place in an immense intergalactic maelstroms that shakes Stephen Humphries' works. Although inspired by the Lost series, LOST ON AN ISLAND OF ADVENTURE does not escape the visions and structures of Create.

From the first chords of Just Above The Surface the listener is plunged into a cosmic darkness that takes us back to the early 70's with electronic warbles that unravel in a mellotron spatial density. Uncertain keyboard chords create an embryonic melody in an opening that is in the purest tradition of the English musician. The music comes to life quietly on a galloping sequence that goes, growing, on layers as melodious as hypnotic. The rhythm gets heavy and hammering while the music effectively depicts the universe of contrast that we find on this album. The title is heavy and very dark with this spectral vison of the mellotron while, yet the rhythm is very fragmentary and wanders in an ambient universe tinted with a desolation that Create transposes with accuracy. Out of Bonds brings us in a cosmic forest. Bird and animal cries bicker on deviant mellotron layers, as if reason escaped us. A deafening sequence releases a paranoid rhythmic that traces an undulating shape under a synth with equally disturbing breaths. This hybrid ambience where milky ways meet Amazonian elements continues on Follow the Shoreline. An intriguing track that starts with undulating strata and high-pitched tinkles that inspire a nice dreamy flute. It's a kind of procession that progresses on an almost hypnotic bass-sequence. A galactic cha-cha-cha full of splendid whistled solos which coo while contorting around a pretty ditty with minimalist tinklings in a very fleshed out mellotron field.

A good track which plunges us in a more atmospheric part of LOST ON AN ISLAND OF ADVENTURE with the turbulent zones of Run for Cover. This Island Life extends heavy veils of the mellotron from which emanate filaments of reverberations under a fragile flute. A poetic contrast from which escapes a sequence whose delicate metallic gallop animates an uncertain rhythm in this misty opacity. Reverberating synth layers animated on the crashes of threatening cymbals in an atmosphere that seems about to burst at any moment; Paradise is a good track on Create's 6th opus. Accompanied by the corrosive synth harmonies, a beautiful sequence floods our ears at the beginning of the 4th minute. It's a heavy and hypnotic moment worthy of the repertoires of Redshift, Volt and Tangerine Dream of the Chris Franke years and which fades quietly into the rich ambiences of Create. Heaven Waits (for Grandad) closes this last work of Stephen Humphries with a sober and very atmospheric approach. Here again the mellotron's airs are intense and superb. They endorse a sadness that spreads with floating wings in a heavy cosmic swirl that silky tinklings revive with a newfound happiness.

Not everyone loves Create! Stephen Humhpries has developed the art of complexity with dark albums of a sonic density with very tight links. LOST ON AN ISLAND OF ADVENTURE is one of those works that must be savored slowly in order to grasp all its dimensions. A good album!

Sylvain Lupari (November 16th, 2008) ***½**

Available at Groove nl

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