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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

HARALD NIES: Dual Systems (2007)

A good album with great finds and more daring structures showing Nies' evolution towards other music frontiers

1 Spacejuggler 7:12

2 Dual Systems 6:00

3 Lights in third Eyes 6:42

4 Orange Temple 13:20

5 Magma Chakra 11:52

6 Weightless Suite 5:49

7 Organic Section 7:46

8 Starrain 7:26

(CD-R/DDL 66:09) (V.F.)

(E-Rock, New Berlin School)

A bit in the same spirit as Magnetic Deflection, Spacejuggler opens with a more symphonic rock approach. The bass is undulating and its rhythm is supported by good percussions on a synth with mellotron arrangements. Guitar and synth agree on rhythmic impulses of a harmonious complicity. A solid entry which depicts a more direct approach on rhythms and melodies which will hang throughout this 4th opus of Harald Nies. Dual System is a good title that makes spleen flow through our veins. A nice intro with a slight whirlwind on a good bass' basis. The tone becomes more airy, playing between rhythms with melodious harmonies and a melancholy retained on a good dreamy synth. The guitar is heavy and amplifies this ambience of nostalgia. Disorderly cymbals open Lights in Third Eyes on a sensual and daring bass that a mellotron synth supported by a solitary tenderness. A good track that moves with an eclectic sensuality without sustained rhythm but with a captivating ascent. Orange Temple is closer to a traditional Berlin School with its uncertain curly effects that couple to a minimalism rhythm whose oscillations are barely perceptible. The synth emits continuous fine rings which gallop on frank percussions, while melodious twists meander a rich sound universe which spreads out its mellotron layers in order to forge a striking cosmic depth. Magma Chakra is the only ambient track on DUAL SYSTEMS. A title with ambiences as heavy as its undulations which inspires a future listening of Chronos by Michael Stearns. Around the 7th minute, the ambiences get aroused to conclude with a soft rhythm guided by a synth with melodious whistlings. At the end of the road, Magma Chakra is this kind of title that seduces with every listening.

More volatile than Dual System, Weightless Suite flows with the same nostalgia. And the piano which engulfs our dreams with romantic sweetness somewhat visits the pink universe of Suzanne Cianni. More impactful, the big organ of Organic Section transports us to a dark world where the breaths of infantile sweetness rock our senses. A bit like on the first Vangelis, the tone is soft, before escaping by the road of insistent percussions which open a cavalry rhythm on oscillations and their sustained buzzing. A title full of artistic paradoxes navigating in troubled but harmonious waters which is also endowed with a superb and very catchy synth solo. It's under a shower of chimes that Starrain oscillates with tenderness. A title in two movements on a soft rhythm with a good guitar with sinuous, intense and poignant solos.

If you liked Magnetic Deflection, DUAL SYSTEMS will definitely please you. Harald Nies continues the work started on his 3rd album but with more daring. Its unambiguous evolution with titles like Orange Temple, Magma Chakra and Organic Section, testifying to a growing maturity and a taste to develop more complex music, but always favoring an opening for a still lukewarm audience. A good album with great finds!

Sylvain Lupari (September 21st, 2007) ***½**

Available at MellowJet Records Bandcamp

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