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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

LENSFLARE: Kyrie Eleison (2018)

Updated: Oct 5, 2020

“Mostly ambient, even within its soft rhythm phases, Kyrie Eleison proposes a daring sound reflexion from Lensflare”

1 Kyrie Eleison 48:48 2 Theotòkos 6:00 Lensflare Music

(DDL 54:48) (V.F.) (Berlin School)

A slow, gloomy breath comes out of the dark introduction of KYRIE ELEISON. A religious exclamation or supplication, Kyrie Eleison is considered the last of the prayers before the end. And it's inspired by this liturgical prayer of the Catholic and Orthodox Churches that Lensflare plunges full creativity into a complex musical reflection on what he considers to be the last act of humanity, believers or not. And the first 5 minutes of the long title-track brings us right in the heart of this observation of Andrea Lensflare Debbi. Consisting of several segments, Kyrie Eleison exudes the influences of Klaus Schulze, Tangerine Dream and the psychotronic ambiences of Neuronium, all from the vintage years, on Lensflare's compositions. Like this Mellotron and its fluty mist, as well as this immense blanket of a Chthonian choir, which succeeds the apostolic raw breezes of its opening. In fact, its first 13 minutes are focused on changing atmospheres that range from black to translucent, while taking care to develop long lines of gloomy reverberations. Electronic effects, closer to the cosmos than the vaults of monasteries, and keyboard chords in mode spiritual meditation guide these ambiences to a first rhythm segment around the 14th minute. It's by a solitary key which continually leaps into layers of mists engraved with voices absent. Linear or delicately drifting, this rhythm is in the tradition of the old Berlin School flavored with Schulze cosmic tweets and layers of Gregorian voices. The synth provides decorative lines that stand out with spiritual songs while the rhythm remains mechanical, motorik, even with its small nuances which modify its stoic fuss. Five minutes later, Kyrie Eleison takes us back to another stage of atmospheres. Apocalyptic vibes this time with very good and percussive sound effects where the synth always cogitates its psalms as coded as evasive. In fact, and if we rely on the mythology of Lensflare, we are either in purgatory or the road to hell. Although heavenly layers can blur these perceptions. Another rhythm structure, brighter this time, implodes a bit after the 28th minute. Fluid and oscillating, the line of sequences sculpts a walk between dunes and plains with slight ascending inclinations. A flute accompanies this very post-vintage Berlin School phase as well as woosh and waash and different colours of lines. Other elements, such as this still incomplete song of the synth and lines that diffuse abrasive and organic radiations, adorn this 2nd rhythmic parade which stretches about 15 minutes still quite quiet before Kyrie Eleison erases in a less divided and seraphic finale than its introduction. In a more complex and abundant sound set of esoteric tones, Theotòkos takes a bit of the rhythmic guide of the last moments of the long title-track. The Mellotron is very enveloping in this title which concludes Lensflare's 5th album in 2018. An album that proves that the Italian artist still had beautiful things to explain and which should surely please fans of Neuronium, Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream.

Sylvain Lupari (November 11th, 2018) ***½**

Available on Lensflare's Bandcamp

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