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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

KLAUS SCHULZE: Moonlake (2005)

Updated: Oct 3, 2021

Moonlake is a pure delight that is in the lineage of Klaus' great albums

1 Playmate in Paradise 30:07

2 Artemis in Jubileo 17:49

3 Same Thoughts Lion 10:38

4 Mephisto 15:23

SPV 63882 CD

(CD 74:04) (V.F.)

(Orchestral Berlin School)

For a few years now, our friend Klaus has been resurrecting his old unfinished works in big musical catalogs (the impressive Ultimate Edition and others) and dusting off his finished works while sprinkling them with a new mix and bonus tracks. All of this to the delight of his many fans. Through this, he even found the time to concoct a new cd. A CD that was not expected anymore because of the worrying rumors about his health. How would this new opus be? Would the prince of electro continue to flirt with a techno sound? Would he go back to his old loves? After all, didn't Tangerine Dream leaves the big synth odes and embraces an FM sound? Be assured! Klaus Schulze is back in strength. In a vision that equals his older works, MOONLAKE is a pleasant sonic feast that flirts with his many styles.

Playmate in Paradise is the pivotal piece of this new album. Thirty minutes of pure delight with a polyrhythmic movement that starts with a fluty sounding synth. A kind of atmospheric saxophone that dances on a hesitant line. The rhythm becomes more consistent, and a second flute-like sound introduces a stronger beat. Sitting on a juicy bass and driving percussions, the rhythm is sustained among a multitude of electronic sound effects. The great Schulze pulls out a plethora of sounds from his synth; flutes, clarinet, choirs, Tabla percussions and more, including a steamy cello that sounds like a human lament. All of them follow each other on mutating rhythms, combining funky, groovy, ambient and hypnotic spirals on Arabic intonations. Halfway through, the track becomes more atmospheric and wraps us in a looped sound that hypnotizes us on the pulsations of the percussions. Spinning, the rhythm increases and Klaus Schulze goes there with his sumptuous solos of mini-moog. A little more and we would believe to be in the time of Moondawn. Superb!

Splendid Tabla percussions playing on a swirling synth starts Artemis in Jubileo. The track rolls on bass lines and a light techno beat. Orbital's fans are in familiar ground here. A good track with a constant rhythm and sublime orchestral arrangements with violins a la Miditerranean Pads. The shortest title on this album was recorded during a concert in Poland in November 2003, Same Thoughts Lion. Mysterious, the rhythm is tepid and is courting nostalgia. A dreamy title which progresses like an immense bolero under thick synth layers. The silky percussions and the waves of synthesizer which are added do not deviate the title out of its hypnotic ambience. A slow and superbly attractive title. Recorded during the same concert, Mephisto has more rhythm and sounds like his last compositions that we find on Contemporary Works. It is after a soft intro that the track embraces a techno approach on sequenced piano lines. The small bites of piano that come and go are simply divine. The music progresses on a beat that breaks in places and ends its race on long synth solos, coated with the atmospheric effects that made the trademark of Klaus Schulze. And just like that, without warning, the 74 minutes of MOONLAKE have just passed by.

He stands the test of time! MOONLAKE is a pure delight that is in the lineage of his great albums; from Blackdance to Miditerranean Pads, through the best moments of Contemporary Works. There is no flaw and it is 74 minutes well placed where you are having a hell of a good time. A lesson to many of the electronic music's dinosaurs who have chosen commercial music that turns into Easy Listening or Muzak. Like what originality can age as well while keeping its original instinct. Thanks Klaus! Thank you for the transplanting of your works, the dusting of your tapes and for your durability.

Sylvain Lupari (May 25th, 2006) *****

Available at Groove

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