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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

EAGLE (Synth Music): Black Eagle (2019)

Updated: Dec 13, 2019

“Good EM with a fine palette of genres ranging from more complex music to well-structured electronic rock to a sort of Kitaro's New Age”

1 Bucket full of Raindrops (6:21)

2 Black Eagle (7:03)

3 Steppenwind (6:09

4 Dream Voyager (5:47)

5 Mark III No.11 (4:44)

6 Gift of Life (5:51)

7 Return of the WOW Signal (8:50)

8 The Night the Moon Fell (5:06)

9 Under the Milky Way Tonight (8:11)

(DDL 58:06) (FR)

(E-Rock, New Berlin School)

There was a lot of keys between

Eagle (Synth.Music)'s BLACK EAGLE and The Lost Kosmonaut that I reviewed in early 2018. In all, Arend Westra has produced no less than 8 singles and/or EP before arriving at BLACK EAGLE. The sound hasn't changed. The artist, however, has matured in the writing with a collection of nine tracks still directed to the Berlin School style, but with a fine palette of genres ranging from more complex music to well-structured electronic rock to a sort of Kitaro's New Age and finally in essences of the Electronica.

After atmospheric explosions, Bucket full of Raindrops unleashes orchestral strata where are clicking hoof's footsteps. Like all over the album, the setting is lunar with a slow orchestral waltz and a series of luminous arpeggios that roll in a series of harmonies trapped in a minimalist movement of the sequencer. Between ambient phases and sudden bursts, the structure of Bucket full of Raindrops extends its harmonious voluptuousness and its slight complexity between the passages of between phases. But already, the sound of the synth does its work by weaving a link of complicity between the musician and the listener. We hook pretty quickly to the title-track and its movement of a more vivid sequencer that structures an ambient motionless pace. Synthia, this woman voice lost in the interstices of the synths, whispers sweet hums. Black Eagle drifts towards a slightly catchier cosmic rock with good percussion effects, while the keyboard follows Gert Emmens' trails. The 2nd part becomes more in mode electronic hard rock and offers good synth solos and guitar effects. Steppenwind is a cosmic rock title noisier than lively with an unequal duel between the hammering of a drum and arpeggios that sparkle trying to chart a harmonious path. Dream Voyager proposes an electronic rock with arrangements, and especially perfumes, of Tangerine Dream's Exit era. The rhythm is supple and fluid with a delicate movement in the harmonic saccades of the sequencer. The riffs of the keyboard and the vaporous haze are as melodious as the sequences and make of it a pleasant title to listen to It is not too complicated and close enough to the territories of an electronic Easy Listening.

Mark III No.11 uses a good melodious approach with a Tangerine Dream's ballad zest à la White Eagle. Gift of Life is really a Zen thing in the 80's-80's Kitaro. After an introduction filled by signal tones and electronic languages, Return of the WOW Signal brings us to the land of reverie with a melody that rolls in loops on a quite lascivious down-tempo. The bass line is striking us right between the senses with good vibrations, and the resonances of the bass pulsations are also effective in order to seize this slow spheroidal rhythm. The melody is woven in a synth with hybrid tones, among which a fairly sharp. Several layers with colors and tones rather diversified pile up on this sketch of Electronica good for dancing belly against belly. The Night the Moon Fell melts in our eardrums with a vague smell of Orient. No faster than the previous track, the rhythm is a slow tempo that gives Synthia all the chance to hum soft whispers, if not suggestive ones. Under the Milky Way Tonight finishes this latest album from Arend Westra with a good electronic structure that is in ballad mode with a base that is solidified by a tangle of sequencer lines, including a nice form of stroboscopic thread. By the way, a good harmonic vision comes from this swarm of sequences, but the bulk of the harmonic context resides in the cosmic orchestrations as well as a thin synth line with a very striking vocal texture which comes to make its turn from time to time. It's a rather intense track with a cosmic broth very moving at times. It's a very good title in BLACK EAGLE that couldn't end in a better way.

Sylvain Lupari (July 12th, 2019) ***¾**

Available at Eagle (Synth.Music) Bandcamp

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