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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Michael Brückner The Giant Illusion (A Compilation) (2016)

Updated: Dec 29, 2022

The Giant Illusion is a fair compilation that requests some listens if you want to tame the complex and ambient universe of MB

(CD-r 144:10) (V.F.) (Ambient, Tribal Ambient, Atmospheric)

Composed between 2004 and 2015, this fascinating compilation of Michael Brückner confirms all the talent and the genius of the one of which the very eclectic universe can easily be compared with the one of Steve Roach so much the sonic range covers wide. And to prove it, the friendly German synthesist has concocted us an unusual compilation, to say the least, by grafting more than 10 titles from various eras and glued them in a continual mosaic where everything seems to get congeal in a stunning realism. The two longest tracks on CD were, until today, unpublished as well as the very long Rübezaal that Michael Brückner has composed for THE GIANT ILLUSION. To the menu! Those two long ambiospherical rivers fired up by ambient and\or tribal rhythms which cross the plains of the cosmos as those more paradisiac which are to the colors of our perception.

Noises and intergalactic moods, a little as in a video game, open the borders of Small Steps Towards the Light (Alrah'ir), a title written around 2007 and offered as a gift to the members of the Brückner group on LastFM. This long title of 23 minutes is a series of 3 segments where the moments of ambiences are daydreaming between more or less ambient structures of rhythm. A first phase loosens its keys which roll into ascending loops while the second phase, at around the 5th minute, offers a more convincing rhythm with cascades of sequences which break out by jolts. And after a long ambiospherical phase, the rhythm reappears with a structure more in mode Groove, like Lounge music. Disciple of synthesizer capable of making flown away of solos in the forms of psychedelic braids and sound effects of another dimension, Michael Brückner sprays Small Steps Towards the Light (Alrah'ir) with these small jewels which are the attractions of a very stylized music. He shows this fascination for synths while he literally makes sing his own in Les Oiseaux De Valheyda, took from the Le Jardin Oublié album released in 2013. It's a short title which united in an admirable way element of ambiences and of drama on a surprising melodious texture. And everything flows like a beautiful melodic brook into the atmospheres which open The Goddess of the Amber Trees, a title pulled out of the excellent Thirteen Rites of Passage released on the SynGate label in 2014. Album of which you will find the review here. After this landscape of celestial moods, Tala Magna, from Five Small Nails in 2004, proposes a tribal rhythm very rousing with a great play of tribal percussions. Valkoire, Oddwind album in 2009, is a wonderful title of meditative ambiences. A line of bass throws the pattern of an evaporated rhythm where are flying nice embraces of a synth and its tears which steer on an earth of serenity. There is a lot of emotion at square inch here!

This Fading Memory (Part 1), which is pulled from the sessions of the intergalactic ambiences 100 million Miles Under The Stars, plunges us literally into the atmospheres of this Michael Brückner's first album to have flirted with my ears in 2012. The extract presented here is a part of a titanic sessions work entitled 100 Million Miles Under The Stars - The Supplementary Volume which contains more than 6 hours of music. When I drew a parallel with Steve Roach … There is an abundance of music and of music styles which group together between these two musicians, as in the ambient tribal Salam' ander from Salaméander 2004, where the violin cries over some soft manual percussions until the explosion of the ambiences among which particles and perfumes are going beyond Return Inside-Outtake A from the Endless Mind Portal album in 2011. This version proposes a different mixing from the original version and dips us back into these cosmic and astral atmospheres which decorate the majority of Michael Brückner's works who always knows how to make sing, to make cry and to make sigh his synth waves throughout the hollow winds. We stay in a long phase of atmospheres, even with the sophistical jerky rhythm of Island (another extracts from Five Small Nails) where effects of synth are panting in a spheroidal structure. Flüchtig, a title which is part of Scattered All Over - Contributions, Collaborations and other rare tracks, compiled in 2015, as well as Jetzt und Hier - ein Album für Flüchtlinge Vol. 2, ends this first CD with a piano which scatters its thoughts like Vangelis knew so well how to do it. The melody remains minimalist and progresses between vaporous atmospheres and a delicate rhythmic of which the crescendo fades out in these mists which deform our ways to hear things.

Michael Brückner never does things by halves. He therefore offers on this compilation a very long sonic river filled of these sound elements which seduce the hearing while captivating our attention, our senses. Thus, the opening of Rübezaal puts us on the alert, even makes rise a flow of excitement, otherwise apprehension, to finally plunge us into a storm of winds and of the multi-dissimilar dust which she makes spin. And then the rhythm, sat on a movement of vintage sequences, progresses towards the various phases of EM and between some well imagined and very well-fed atmospheric moments. In brief, a long title where Klaus Schulze and Steve Roach are behind Michael Brückner's shoulders to blow him the best advices. The magic and the symbiosis here are unequivocal. Rübezaal rewards the one who tames the bends and bounces, the lengths and permutations in order to be totally enthralled some listenings farther. Just like the majority of the works that Michael Brückner presents here in spare parts on THE GIANT ILLUSION. Let yourself be tempted by this sweet and crazy excursion in the universe of an artist who will always know how to please you. That, it’s guaranteed!

Sylvain Lupari (March 18th, 2017) *****

Availaible at Michael Brückner Bandcamp

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