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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

INDRA: Echo in Time (1998-2005)

I enjoyed this first meeting with Indra's Berlin School's electronic music

1 Alpha & Omega 35:26

a) Mysteries Of God

b) Dancing With Merlin

c) Sea Of Elves

d) The Great Celebration (end of the cosmic cycle)

2 Holy Mountain 16:38

3 Echo In Time 16:06

(DDL 65:10) (V.F.)

(Berlin School)

Directly from Romania, here is Indra! An independent artist who has been working since 1993 and who sells and distributes his music independently with his label Perfect Music. By visiting his website, you can see that he already has almost 30 CDs to his credit. In 2005, Synth Music Direct began introducing his catalog to its clientele with this album. The press notes mentioned a new artist with very Berlin School influences. It's a kind of Klaus Schulze's pupil who is strongly influenced by the German master of electronic music. Since then, the cascade effect was observed and several titles from the Romanian catalog were taken up and redistributed by different distribution companies. If this new treasure hunt includes some gems, it also includes some albums that are more difficult to tame. This is not the case with ECHO IN TIME which is a rather revealing CD of the early works of the Romanian synthesist since it was originally produced back in 98. I think it's the ideal CD to introduce his catalog and to offer another door to the wonderful world of EM. New door because Indra's sound is his own.

Alpha & Omega is a long track of more than 35 minutes divided in 4 parts. Mysteries of God starts things up with delicate Tabla percussions and a good bass line that sculpt a light rhythm. The synth layers are silky and answer by its most beautiful fluty assets. The percussions are divine and remind of Klaus Schulze's playing. Behind this main sequence of rhythm another melody takes shape. Subtle, it makes dancing and intertwining its silky thin lines to the main line of a good languorous synth. Romance, melancholy and sensuality are the prerogative of Indra's style, without forgetting his minimalist structures on which he adds charms and mysteries. The mysteries of Romania. The rhythm is soft and breaks on percussions' corals. In a very good moment of the album, the sequence radically changes its dangling and gets more rhythmic when Dancing with Merlin follows. This part seems to be casted in the rhythmic influences of Klaus Schulze with an amazing set of percussion and sequences a la Miditerranean Pads' Percussion Planante. This solo is surrounded by silky arrangements and stutters of a bass and its elastic chords. It's a pure delight that overflows in the soft phases of Sea of Elves. This third part is more quiet. Arrhythmic, the percussions are disordered and accompany a lost flute. This short atmospheric interruption dies in a symphonic thunder announcing the first lines of the finale with The Great Celebration. The initial melody returns with more subtle lines added, forming a beautiful violin ensemble. The effect is perfect. A great track!

We enter the ambient side of ECHO IN TIME with Holy Mountain. Lost in time, percussions clap in search of a beat to put under the sticks. The atmosphere turns more austere when we hear low voices impregnated by a Tibetan essence. The rhythm comes alive a bit on a bass line but it remains static, even if synth layers paired with percussions try to animate it. A sequenced bass line throws a light rhythm that leaves its mark around the 6th minute without wanting to take off. The keys dance on this line and quietly Holy Mountain takes shape on a sequenced rhythm line rolling in loops, triggering a cosmic bolero form that sticks a harmony to the mess of percussions and sound effects. A good track that requires a few listens. Heterogeneous noises and static effects compose the ambiences essence of the very soporific title-track. Synth layers with symphonic tones stick to this atmosphere filled of glass dusts. The harmonies that emerge are warm and also trapped in the stagnant universe of Echo in Time. A very ambient track that should please the fans of the genre with attractive sounds. Those who know me know too that this is not really my cup of tea!

Anyway, I enjoyed this first meeting with Indra's electronic music. It's very good Berlin School with all the harmonious side and these flights of a sequencer in polyrhythmic mode. Alpha Omega is one of these hidden treasures that we like to discover. Originally composed and produced in 1998, ECHO IN TIME should charm the pure and hard aficionados of the genre. A pleasant discovery!

Sylvain Lupari (June 9th, 2006) ****½*

Available at Indra Bandcamp

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