NORD: Mare Nubium (2016)
“If only for its first 15 minutes...Mare Nubium is worth to be the entering door to the universe of Nord”
1 Mare Nubium Part One 24:52 2 Mare Nubium Part Two 18:16 3 Mare Nubium Part Three 9:32 Nord Music
(DDL 52:49) (V.F.) (Ambient beats, sequencer-based style)
The Romanians have decided to invade the market of EM manufactured massively! Sztakics Istvan Attila's second album in 2016, MARE NUBIUM aims to be a sonic vessel where the listener is submerged by a sea of cosmic clouds. It's a sound experience in the land of the mass production where Nord approaches our ears with a powerful first part which will throw shade to the 28 other minutes of an album which has all the attributes to seduce, of whom the splendid Mare Nubium Part One! Although the rest is not bad at all...
Chords split up in oblivion gather themselves in order to form this embryo of emotions which will revolve around Mare Nubium Part One. Tears of synth are crying over this assembly of dissimilar tones while that quite slowly takes shape in our auditive horizon the atmospheres of this long introduction which is the equal of the laziness of a dreamer in his moon. The synth is delicate. Dividing its presence with dark waves and other waves which drift such as slow static primitive orchestrations, it also releases these tones of prism which crackle, sparkle and tinkle some harmonious stammerings that will roam all along the cosmic way of MARE NUBIUM. A movement of sequence forms inside the 5th minute. Pounding as an excited heart, the movement is as these rodeos of sequences which roll on themselves without ever exploding. Except that here, the echo of its pulse enriches ambiospherical elements by freeing sequenced keys which turn in a loop with more liveliness. These sequences are called Franke! And without notice, the rhythm of Mare Nubium Part One is already anchored between our ears. The pond of disparate tones which roamed in the cosmos tightens its tones to create an envelope of emotionalism that a magnificent piano is caressing of a melody to make pale every fan of Vangelis. The synth spreads its orchestral veil and the crescendo, that we felt coming since a couple of minutes, crumble more and more its effect of surprise. That's the rolls of percussions around the 8:22 that give us the goosebumps. And this piano! Divine, it draws a melody with high tone notes which eat us the soul. We forget the multiple circles of the sequences which drive the rhythm, so much the melody is wonderful. It's a meshing of Tangerine Dream, for the sequences, and Vangelis, for the piano harmonies, which is coated of synth which multiplies its airs with solos in the shape of lasso and of which the tone remains unique to the signature of Nord. Ten minutes later, our level of emotions requires a break. An ambio-cosmic pause with a thick cloud of tones which moves in troop and in loops. such as those movements of fire torches that we roll in the semi-darkness of the night. Orchestrations get back to haunt our senses. And we recall then of this superb first part which still haunts our senses, even in this long bad patch. A long ambiospherical phase of a dozen minutes before that the rhythm becomes wilder again, but in a little less appealing form than the first 10 minutes of Mare Nubium Part One.
Mare Nubium Part Two begins its psy-cosmic journey with tones floating in a cosmic ocean and which resound as drops of prisms in layers of synth and of their twisted forms which buzz like droning groans. Nervous cymbals and their fragile metallic jingles peck at this silence pierced by fragmented tones. The movement, as well as the droning waves, draw an ambient rhythm which feeds on the disparity of the tones. The synth throws some fluty harmonies. Two fast knocks of pulsations and a line of circular sequences get bind to the floating movement of the metallic elytrons, shaping a delicate morphic beat which fatten its state with the addition of other sequences which flicker in parallel. The crescendo here is in the rhythmic approach. Except that there is no explosion! More static than mobile, the rhythm increases its swiftness with a thick cloud of tones and with electronic twists up to the doors of the 8th minutes. There, it transfers its energy to a good oscillating line which waves as a snake of seas. A snake which metamorphoses into a unique pulsation and which emits rhythmic radiations then grows the rhythm in a stillness state, but very pulsatory, like a troop of one-legged people who tumble down the invisible corridors of the cosmos. Structured in 3 phases, a little as in Mare Nubium Part One but in a steadier envelope of rhythm, Mare Nubium Part Two is an exercise of ambient rhythm fed by a profusion of tones and sequences which gather constantly around a hypnotic phase. And it's the very opposite with Mare Nubium Part Three and its strip of oscillations which dance like ticks that are shaken on a conveyor. The movement is knotted into occasional jerks which go and come, switching forms with some intergalactic SOS which lose the strength of their beams in the crawlings and the hummings of a bass line and in synth lines which sweep the intersidereal horizons like a huge eye and its gurgling lamentations. This is pure sci-fi in tones and pure sound experiment of Nord.
See! Hear! The imagination is unlimited in this Sztakics Istvan Attila's new cosmic tale. Certainly, the Rumanian maker of sounds is as much prolific as the fates of our shadows, but he manages all the same to sculpt some pretty small jewels which are worth the outlay in this MARE NUBIUM. If only for its first 15 minutes...
Sylvain Lupari (April 1st, 2016) ***¾**
Available at Nord Bandcamp