MERGENER Et Amici: Nox Mystica (2004)
Updated: Feb 26
“This is a very large-scale symphonic EM album with orchestral arrangement dominated by amazing layers of emotions in its string section”
1 Soleae Umidi 3.15
2 Spectaculum 7.02
3 Fornix 3.27
4 Aquae Ductus 2.54
5 Porticus 7.14
6 Nox Mystica 4.54
7 Pyrricha 3.04
8 Cuniculus 2.27
9 Bestiarius 7.43
10 Aquarum Calentium Fontes 5.31
11 Te Deum 9.10
12 Video Addendum: Nox Occulta 6.57
(CD 56:50) (V.F.)
The beauty of electronic music, and of the components which help art to develop the most extreme tones, is the possibility of creating, of sculpting complex works that would probably never have seen the light of day because of the financial costs involved they generate. Obviously, it takes talent. Knowing how to write, play music and have an overflowing imagination to be able to transpose his ideas, his visions on music without words. Peter Mergener is a very talented artist with an incredible sense of composition and an immense knowledge of electronic equipment. He has been in it since the beginning of the 80's. The Mergener/Weisser years and the Software years followed by his solo period which began in 1991 with the album Passage In Time. NOX MYSTICA is his 11th solo album. Presented as part of the Bread & Games 2003, this album is composed with singer Alquimia and performed with guitarist Achim Elsen and Oral Shakir on percussions. It's a play of musical theater of astonishing realism because of the EM possibilities which is also offered in DVD format.
Soleae Umidi opens with a theatrical intro and violin strata on this era's sound samplings. Nothing is left to chance, from the blows of the swords to the crackling of fire, NOX MYSTICA sparkles with authenticity as soon as it opens, which is running to Spectaculum. The speaker of the arena addresses the crowd in Latin and Spectaculum shakes the columns of the temple with its pompous opening, its bass drums and its bugles that transport us to the Roman era on a slow and lascivious rhythm structured by superb layers of an orchestral synth. The synths are amazingly rich in sounds. Very well structured, each move has its role in this dense musical sumptuousness. From flute movements to orchestral layers to the equivalence of a complete section of violinists, Peter Mergener delivers an opus complex in detail, but harmonious and melodious in the results. Fornix and Aquae Ductus are atmospheric corridors with cavernous sound effects, structuring a detailed ambience, as if we were there, on the discreet and soft voice of Alquimia. Guitar chords intertwine with synth layers which marry the same modulations, while the echo of fine percussions pierces the atony of the moment, feeding a fluid and melodious rhythm. A good title with the tribal aromas of an ancient Greece, enhanced by the indisputable flair of Peter Mergener in the realization. More dreamy, with a guitar flowing like a harp, Nox Mystica is a sweet melody with a magic flute and orchestral arrangements that waltz and impose a romantic rhythm.
Pyrricha and Cuniculus are titles with tribal ambiences of an untapped jungle that open the doors of a bloodthirsty arena with the underground practices of gladiators among the roars of hungry lions. With an intro also under the sign of the lions, the austere breaths of Bestiarius throw a disturbing atmosphere in the arena. Drums instill a progressive march on layers of an Olympus symphony with harmonious modulations and sound effects of percussions struck on an anvil. A Bedouin flute pierces the silence of Aquarum Calentium Fontes and cradles with the wonderful voice of Alquimia forming a beautiful celestial melody. Te Deum ends this musical theater with a progressive melody whose notes crisscross a mini sequential whirlwind guided by an excellent guitar solo from Achim Elsen and the voice of Alquimia. A title very close to the melodious-cosmic repertoire of Peter Mergener.
NOX MYSTICA is a very large-scale symphonic EM album with orchestral arrangement dominated by amazing synth layers of emotions in its string section. Rarely have I heard a synth that is both so structured and so melodious in such short tracks. Intense and symphonic, this is also a pleasantly story told on stunning arrangements. And here I'm not just talking about violins or string sections. I am referring to sound effects, to those scattered percussions which gravitate here and there, to manual and tribal percussions, to bugles, to sumptuous processions, to mellotron flutes and to sublime arrangements with the celestial voice of Alquimia. In short, a colossal job where nothing is left to chance. And, for Mergener fans who feel a bit lost in this structured universe, Te Deum is a superb one where he cannot deny his past, nor his roots. But after 1 to 2 times of playing the album you will find the arcs, the melodious modulations and his strokes of genius of his magic synth which has just deviated from its course to present us a great piece of musical theater.
Sylvain Lupari (January 27th, 2007) ***½**
Available at BCS Music