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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

EAGLE (SYNTH MUSIC): Hypervelocity Star (2022)

Updated: Mar 2, 2022

These 3 new tracks are well worth the price of its download

1 Dobhar-chú 6:38

2 Bright Future 5:55

3 Lost Lake 5:41

4 Hawking radiation 5:53

5 Rogue Planet 3:33

6 Not afraid of the Dark 5:46

7 Faith over Fear 6:46

8 Hypervelocity Star 6:20

9 Love can be Real Pain 5:02

(DDL 51:40) (V.F.)

(New Berlin School)

It's a bit difficult to follow the evolution of Arend Westra. His sound ship Eagle (Synth Music) is very active in the Bandcamp universe by producing a multitude of singles, sometimes E.P. and from time to time an album. For the purpose of making a CD-R, produced and sold by the English label Synth Music Direct, the Dutch synthesist proposes an extended version of 18 minutes of his last E.P. HYPERVELOCITY STAR proposes 3 new tracks which follow the order of those of Rogue Planet. The electronic music (EM) lovers who prefer CD-R versions will have to pay the full price, while those who only want to get the 3 new tracks will be able to get them by paying per piece on Eagle (Synth Music)'s Bandcamp page. A good compromise in this ocean of singles that Arend Westra also offers for download. His last one, The Ghost of Kyiv, is offered for free. And what are these 3 new tracks worth?

Well, the greatest quality of this album is that it commands us to listen again to his E.P. and to remember how beautiful the Berlin School lullaby of Not afraid of the Dark was. Its ascending procession, its weeping melody and especially the one on crystalline arpeggios were magnetizing. Faith over Fear follows with a semi-ambient structure. A kind of ballad with a harmonious keyboard that spreads its melancholy on the rolls of sober percussions. The structure is armed with a good bass line at its second turn, structuring a little more a cosmic downtempo. The track reaches its transition point about 20 seconds before the 4th minute. The soft sequence line doesn't betray the perception of a finely stroboscopic structure that supported Faith over Fair whose melody blazes more in this short interlude before the rhythm takes its rights with more insistence. We are in the realm of narrative EM on this album that was sorely lacking in additional music. As someone who likes heavy, slow rhythms, I'm well served with the title-track, of which the curt and bouncy flow of its opening slides into a good ascending structure. The movement swirls in a hazy grip of a synth that spits its spleen at full ears over vaporous effects percussions. We tap our feet and roll our neck on this slow but catchy rhythm structure worthy of a good Berlin School. The keyboard lays down a melody with arpeggios that answer each other with an echo effect. That's the signal for Hypervelocity Star to start twirling and spinning under great synth solos. A delight my friends! The mournful violins of Love can be Real Pain perfectly match the meaning of its title. A beautiful ambient melody, more melancholic than Not afraid of the Dark, which concluded a more complete album of Eagle (Synth Music).

Finally, these 3 new tracks that help to fill the CD-R version of Rogue Planet are well worth the price of its download. The title-track is simply incredible while the two other tracks are as good as what we find in the E.P.

Sylvain Lupari (March 2nd, 2022) ****½*

Available at Eagle (Synth Music) Bandcamp

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