“A very good album from A to Z!”
1 The Sudden Collapse of the Circle 2:24
2 Somnum 6:30
3 White and the Black Point 5:24
4 Scottish Dance with Wooden Spoon in the Hand 3:36
5 Laponica Noodle Pulmenti 3:32
6 Weichspüler 4:38
7 Orange and the Green Triangle 4:00
8 Echoes from Stephenson 2-18 16:58
(DDL 47:03) (V.F.)
(New Berlin School)
The biggest frustration I experienced upon discovering Johannes Schmoelling's masterpiece, Wuivend Riet, was that the famous 3rd member of Tangerine Dream's most glorious period would not continue in this vein. So it is with a huge pleasure that I got interested in this latest album-download of Mypan that has just been released on SynGate Luna. You see me coming don't you? Even if a gap of more than 4 years separates the two albums, MIXTA CASEO PATINA follows the outline of Perpetuum Musica Momentum, a nice album of very accessible and hyper-melodious electronic music (EM). Both albums are built around melodic themes that are catchy and have nothing in common. This is the way Michael Stehl portrays his music as an extension of himself, a colorful character, sometimes simple, sometimes crazy and with a lot of humor and imagination. The difference is that this plate of mixed cheeses, free translation of MIXTA CASEO PATINA, offers a range of melodies embroidered in a delicious complexity and where the sonic perfumes of the mid 80's shine through and where the impression of hearing good old Johannes Schmoelling is more than tangible. Especially this period of Wuivend Riet.
A bass key of the electronic piano, a thin line of heavenly voices and a delicate melody make up the strange sound frictions in the opening of The Sudden Collapse of the Circle. Pleasant or annoying? I imagine that these rustlings are a call to our imagination to perceive the sudden collapse of the circle. I'm still undecided! But the shimmering resonances of the arpeggios that wander with a ball of melancholy tied to this first melody of this new Mypan album make these sound effects take a back seat. And when the staccatos of the strings bite our ears, we have already forgotten the 40 seconds of this opening. Strings and horns intertwine violently in a philharmonic setting that Michael Stehl directs to furious symphonic percussions. That's a lot of movement for a track that's only 2:30 minutes long! Get used to it, it won't be the only one in MIXTA CASEO PATINA. Somnum follows with nervous sequences that stir on the spot in order to support this fabulous melody that rocks our eardrums. This melody is both mocking and melancholic on a keyboard that swaps its glassy tint for a more stylized approach of a synth with solos modeled on the rhinestone melody. And, unlike The Sudden Collapse of the Circle, Somnun uses its 6:30 minutes in a minimalist course that ends up weaving a pleasant earworm. We are very close to Perpetuum Musica Momentum with this track. White and the Black Point initially offers a lifeless rhythm structure for the feet, but effective for the neurons, with tiny cadenced steps that slowly move forward around a cloud of clatters. What sounds roughly like a cross between a big trombone and a tuba casts a buzzing vampiric shadow. The rattlings impose their presence with an increase in volume, while this bass layer vibrates menacingly. The music and its rhythm take the shape of an unreal procession in the land of electronic delights to finally become catchy with a good set of percussions that make it heavy and slow. Arpeggios, always dressed in this glassy tone, stick together in a shimmering sequence to create a fascinating melody. This track is undeniably reminiscent of some of Wuivend Riet's structures.
One can easily waltz as well as jig on the traditional dance rhythm that Scottish Dance with Wooden Spoon in the Hand offers. The orchestrations on this track are of a high musical flight and guide us towards a sumptuous melodious vision blown by a synth with breezes of flute blown in virgin crystal glass. Cybernetic duck chirps on a ritornello struck in a xylophone, Laponica Noodle Pulmenti is the kind of track that shows Mypan's humorous side. It's cute and catchy with a creative edge that flirts with the world of Robert Schroeder. Weichspüler is an amazing ballad, like a cosmic nursery rhyme, set on a duel between a keyboard and its shimmering keys whose shimmering effect clashes with a delightful fluty tone of the synth. I found it so beautiful that even this voice from the Cosmos did not alter its majesty. A delight for romantics and those souls with a heavy past! Orange and the Green Triangle offers a rhythm as fluid as a high-speed waltz well framed in very good arrangements. You know those scary runs down long dark corridors where the victim is about to be killed? The music gives this auditory image but in a much faster flow. The pace is supported by a union between a bass-pulse line and sober electronic percussion as well as percussive clanking that jingles like puppets in madness to inject a more animated arrhythmic phase. The orchestrations are of silk with a synth which does not spare its melodious solos. As delicious as curious! Approaching 17 minutes, Echoes from Stephenson 2-18 proposes an organic, for the accelerated circadian beats, and cosmic opening that is related to this red supergiant star of the Sobieski's Shield constellation. These first moments literally project us into the Cosmos up until the sequencer runs a rhythm line that zigzags giving this impression of going out of tack. This atypical opening gets projected into the void, and the echo of its silence which translates into the sounds of clashing hoops and a distant melody set on a circular string of arpeggios with opaline tints. The melody is tied to a pulsing bass line that throws us into the rhythmic dimensions of Zeit, a majestic track from Schmoelling's flagship album. A haunting track that captures our level of obsession over its 17-minute. A recurring phenomenon in MIXTA CASEO PATINA where each track, no matter how accessible, is a source of extraordinary auditory pleasure. Very good from A to Z!
Sylvain Lupari (December 17th, 2022) ****¼*
Available on SynGate Bandcamp
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