GERT EMMENS: The Tale of the Warlock (2006)
“Futuristic or medieval themes, Emmens always manages to bring a melodious and a rhythmic aspects to his musical journeys”
1 The Warlock Returns 10:33
2 Warlock meets the Young Princess 16:24
3 Myths and Legends as told by the Storyteller 13:45
4 The Dream That Came True 3:47
5 The Confrontation-Warlock vs the Wizard of the Dark 17:17
6 Ghosts Calling from Yonder 11:20
7 Warlock’s Death 5:11
(CD/DDL 78:42) (V.F.)
(Sequencing Netherlands School)
Since Waves of Dreams, released in 04, Gert Emmens has carved out a solid reputation for writing very harmonious opuses that bubble up in a series of sequences with unexpected paths of rhythms and with complexly melodious movements. Futuristic or medieval themes, the Dutch synthesist always manages in bringing out a melodious and catchy aspect of his wonderful musical journeys. THE TALE OF THE WARLOCK is his 1st concept album. An imaginary quest whose music perfectly marries the romantic imagination of a musician whose development never ceases to surprise and to charm.
An intriguing intro welcomes us in the lands of The Warlock Returns. A breath of shadow leaves a threatening sound imprint, like the caresses of a siren who enchants in the midst of rumblings whose coming escapes us. A superb dark sequence skips and flutters in an ambience where the choir of winds and the cries of bat confirm the dense darkness. Another shorter and sharper sequenced line modulates a more fluid rhythm which leans on these lonely beats among layers of a stagnant synth. It's a dreary and not very reassuring landscape which awaits the return of the Warlock, and this even if the synth harpoons an undulating movement and traces a superb melody which remains anchored like a thematic refrain. The percussions are heavy and accompany a synth with equally heavy layers and whose harmonious course is constantly evolving. The evolution and modulation of rhythms and of polyphase structures are the great strength of Gert Emmens who continually to explore new developments with the continual arrival of new lines of sequences with very melodious outlines. These static and obscure sequences shape the intro of Warlock meets the Young Princess, where we can feel Warlock walking along a long intimidating corridor. The echo of a dull blow floods this solitary track by a superb segment of synth with supple chords and short silky solos, like a short luminous fairyland. A shower of chords is the forerunner of the modulations to come.
And the synth releases ethereal and silky layers of which the low ascending flow opens the rhythm of Myths and Legends as told by the Storyteller, a title teeming with sumptuous solos which coo on the undulations of a sequence line whose sweet chords cross a musical landscape stuffed with synthesized melodies. This melodious clarity disappears halfway, leaving a long resonant trail to tread the territory of ambient noises. A sequence emerges. Galloping, it progresses on felted metal percussions whose strikes flutter like an unreal insect on the tunes of a synth with nostalgic layers and violin strings wounded by the stigmata of a forgotten war. After the progressive hypnosis of The Dream that Came True, we enter into the celestial intro of The Confrontation - Warlock versus the Wizard of the Dark. A sequential structure swirls in an ionosphere which is filled of various tones. Scattered tones that roam on a bewitching and hypnotic movement of sequences where choirs, felted percussions and good solos tinged with schizophrenia furnish this heterogeneous universe torn by indecision. Behind a spectral breath, the sequences of Ghosts Calling from Yonder reach titanic proportions. Nice muffled sequences which quiver on subdued metallic percussions begin their spiral climbs on the back of a synth with melodious chords. In my opinion this is the most beautiful track on THE TALE OF THE WARLOCK. A beautiful album which ends with a sad and funeral track that Gert Emmens renders so soberly well, like the rest of THE TALE OF THE WARLOCK; a great story so well told in music!
Sylvain Lupari (March 28th, 2008) *****
Available at Groove nl