NATTEFROST: Futurized (2013)
Updated: Sep 27, 2020
“Futurized is a strong up-beat album sculptured in a futuristic vision which exceeds the enchantment”
1 Westhofen 5:35
2 Electro Shock 5:09
3 Poliment 4:18
4 Beware of the Destiny 3:23
5 Ghost Mind 5:08
6 Futurized 9:27
7 Will I get to your Heart 4:55
8 793 5:12
9 Red Angel 4:04
10 While Asleep 4:54
(CD/LP/DDL 52:10) (V.F.)
(Electro Synth-Pop, Berlin School)
Winds of Orion, and its quirky tones, cause the heartbeat of a pulse at the dawn of its excitement which resonates in star dust, while the rhythm of Westhofen struggles to find its cruising speed. A strobe line comes out of this indecision. It winds in its circular approach to follow the chords of a keyboard with vocal hues and stow at dull but sustained pulsations. Curt boom-boom tremble in our ears and make stamp a robotic rhythm. And Westhofen to vibrate vertically with a somewhat technoïd approach where the rhymes of a vocoder get lost in the harmonic chords and riffs which detach it from its cybernetic substance, whereas twisted synth solos try to bring it back to the Berlin School territories. Confusing? We would be less. Welcome to the splendid universe of astonishing rhythms and sweet cybernetic atmospheres of Nattefrost. Since the Danish synthesist introduced us to his first Absorbed In Dreams and Yearing chords in 2006, he has never ceased to seduce and confuse while growing his legion of fans. From album to album, Bjorn Jeppesen dilutes his primary style to annex piece by piece some visions of IDM and of psycho-techno with an artistic credibility that many take years to achieve. Just remember Jean-Michel Jarre? And each album brings its share of titles which hang and weave silky earworms. If we counted them by the shovel on the very good Dying Sun / Scarlet Moon and From Distant Times, FUTURIZED is far from being pitiful. And it starts with Westhofen and its robotic pattern which evolves in its varied textures. Performed with Remember Green, aka Steen Chorchendorff Jorgensen, Electro Shock takes off like a cosmic flight with the rattling of cymbals ringing in strobing nets with jerky lines. The rhythm is curt and nourished by sudden movements, like a cosmic break-dance, with a robotic vocoder and a mesh of pulsations / percussions which pulses with an arrhythmic cadence on a structure which passes from raw rhythm to ethereal atmospheres with fluid synths and fragile harmonies.
These rhythms woven into cybernetic percussions and stroboscopic threads swarm on this latest album by Nattefrost which slowly deviates towards some good organic-cosmic synth-pop, like on the very robotic and catchy Poliment as well as the very good Will I get to your Heart and its melody which tickles in our ears many hours later, two titles with Michel Moers, from the Belgian group Telex, on vocals. Beware of the Destiny is a powerful up-tempo with heavy pulsations and percussions which roll in an ambience of video games. The rhythm is fast, and the Kraftwerk robotic voices shape a very futuristic melodious approach. And if one thinks that Nattefrost fills our ears to the rim, wait to hear the furious Red Angel which immerses us in an amazing acid-house à la Leftfield. Ghost Mind bursts into our ears with its heavy oscillating line which undulates with a very harmonious pandemonium. The pace is heavy. It swirls with its huge shaded curls, combining Gary Numan-style of synth-pop with Kraftwerk-style of techno beat and a sentimental Bowie-style melody. It's a solid title which is powerful without being aggressive. These heavy and nervous oscillations structure the circular rhythm of the title-track which immerses us squarely in the rhythmic patterns of Kraftwerk. Everything is there; monochord and repetitive pulsations, interlocking robotic sequences, recurring melodic patterns and strange vocoder. The second part breaks away from its initial minimalist approach in order to offer a clearly more musical structure. But one as in the other, it's another very good track with a zone of cosmic turbulence which separates the two musical entities very well while holding them one very close to the other. We can say that it's progressive synth-pop tightly stuffed with its cosmic ambiences. 793 is a very good organicosmic down-tempo like While Asleep which is slower on the other hand without its strobe belt. But Michel Moers' voice… As delicious as morphic.
With its artwork which reveals a very sci-fi spaceship, FUTURIZED is as futuristic as its title and its cover let suggest it. It's a solid up-beat album sculpted in a futuristic vision that goes beyond enchantment. If we can be familiar with the rhythms and ambiences, sometimes vintage and sometimes more contemporary, which buzz and sing in our ears, everything around them adds a postmodern depth where the listener really feels in another galaxy. Nattefrost immerses us in what IDM (Intelligent Dance Music) has the best to offer.
Sylvain Lupari (May 7th, 2013) *****
Available at Nattefrost Bandcamp