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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

KUUTANA: Rebirth (2015)

I was quite surprised by the wealth of the meditative structures in Rebirth which at the end turns out to be as ambient as strangely haunting

1 Awakening 6:01 2 Twilight Mist 8:12 3 First Light 5:29 4 Timeless 2:34 5 Warming Spirits 5:52 6 Aqua 5:04 7 Moonlight Whispers 5:43 8 Infinite Improbabilities of Life 5:50 9 A Mindful Moment 5:26 10 Morning Glory 4:40 11 One Lazy Afternoon 6:28 12 Serenity 5:48 Kuutana Music

(DDL 67:10) (V.F.) (Ambient Music)

After the cosmic genre and the New Berlin School, with Sequential Dreams, some smooth Chill and electronic rock, with Undiscovered Shores, and a prog music soaked by the fragrances of Pink Floyd with Midnight Airship, Kuutana returns tickling our senses and our ears with an album of purely ambient, of meditative music. This time it's mainly in the essence of Vangelis that Ron Charron, the man behind Kuutana, decided to draw his inspirations. REBIRTH is plentiful of these slow synth pads filled by metallic colors and among which the nuances, as well as the slow crescendo, soak us of a mesmerizing halo of emotionalism. I found that very intense and very representative of its naming which aims to be a celebration of the life which is reborn at every spring.

And that begins with the rumblings of Awakening. Rumblings which are transformed into concerto for mooing from colored winds. Winds which little by little are toning down a sibylline envelope in order to make shine some fine lines to the colors of the serenity which break out like slow astral waves. What amazes the most are these piles of lines with for tones as much solemn as musical and these dramatic effects which shake our soul like a knock from a hammer which thunders in the atmospheres. The atmospheres are also surprisingly lyrical for an ambient album. Tracks such as Awakening, Warming Spirits and its ethereal voices, and Serenity, which is very dreamlike by the way, redefine the meditative genre with sparks of tones which feed as much the curiosity as the ambient spaces. And everything is not really linear here. The synth layers are speaking to us, murmuring the breezes of Fountain of Youth. Twilight Mist is a very intense track, molded on the concept of Serenity, with arpeggios is which sing like those of Vangelis in China. The tears of synth, the smothered explosions and the sound effects always haloed of Vangelis' influences confer it a vision more futuristic than passive. Like with First Light which plunges us into Blade Runner with threatening bass lines which will awaken a small ambient melody just before the finale. To this level, A Mindful Moment is deliciously more intense, and its orchestrations pierce our human shell. And what about the voices which caress a melody fragmented in the thoughts of Kuutana? Doubtless one of the most moving points of REBIRTH. A short music piece, Timeless is not less attractive with its hollow breezes, its lines of flutes and its delicate arpeggios embroiderer of melancholic veils which at the end are sculpting a delicate morphic melody perfumed of the Arabian mysteries. I could write at great length about this album that I would describe sensibly the same thing; music of ambiences remains ambient music. But sometimes there is more! Kuutana imposes a vision clearly more musical if not filmic or yet very emotional. Except for the sneaky, and rather surprising should I add, rhythm of Infinity Improbabilities of Life, which does quite like Steve Roach, the rest of this source of meditation offered by Kuutana inhale a total tranquility and is forged on a shower of multilayer of synths which bring thin lines of astral voices as well as particles of the arpeggios which are ringing and sparkling into some beautiful and rather poignant pieces of melodies lost in cosmos, as in the soft and very beautiful Warming Spirits. And each piece of music reveals little by little a shade of harmony which goes and comes, bewitching constantly a listening which ends to be less passive. Aqua is soft and very luminous with good orchestrations which are going to make you capsize the soul. Moonlight Whispers is more passive and more austere, while One Lazy Afternoon blows his winds which always lift a bed of melody scoffed by the time.

Honestly? I was quite surprised by the wealth of the meditative structures in REBIRTH. I take care of saying meditative because we are far from the banal astral territories where the winds forge linear sound arabesques to strictly speak of an ambient work. It's obvious that REBIRTH possesses an ambient form, but it's at the same time a form where the music and the harmonies get tangle in orchestrations welded by a good dose of emotionalism. And I must admit that Kuutana impresses. With all his hats and his projects, he always manages to bring his musical visions as high as very good productions which are inevitably worth being listened to.

Sylvain Lupari (July 18th, 2015) ***¾**

Available at Borders Edge Music

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