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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Ian Boddy & Parallel Worlds: Exit Strategy (2011)

Updated: Dec 11, 2022

This is a great album where the shadows meet the melodious lights of a day sifted by the heavy sails of mellotron

1 Portal 4:44

2 Impresario 8:01

3 Soliloquy 6:53

4 Entwined 7:20

5 Exit Strategy 10:08

6 Hidden 4:59

7 Return 9:44

(DDL 51:49) (V.F.)

(Dark Ambient, Modular, Berlin School)

Ian Boddy's DiN label has always specialized in offering music that transcends the usual boundaries of conventional and even progressive EM. Imbued of mysticism and strangeness, unique to the sound universe of the duo Ian Boddy and Bakis Sirros, EXIT STRATEGY is an album where musicality is matched only by the creativity of the very eclectic duo. Yes, we can be musical while being creative! Woven from the ambient sculptures with the composite tones of Bakis Sirros and dressed in slow and languid layers of synth by Ian Boddy, this first collaboration of the boss of DiN and Parallel Worlds ejects between our ears a bewitching industrial music that nests between heavy atmospheric phases and the hesitant rhythms a la Redshift and Arc. A nice mix where the music is like nowhere else. Here, as in a parallel universe!

Portal invites us to this obscure and gloomy metallic universe with dark mephistophelic bellowing which float above felted percussions. Percussions/pulsations with suction cup effects resonate in a universe streaked of metallic ululations. Thin crystalline rosaries parade in a pure abstract ambience where the diurnal laments float like wandering souls before Portal moves towards a heavy static and infernal rhythm. A brief but heavy moment when spirits revolt and calm down to infiltrate the more musical world of Impresario. Protecting itself behind obscure atmospheres, Impresario evolves between different rhythmic segments filled with multiple heterogeneous tones' percussions. It takes off slowly with layers of synth, as well as nice moving and undulating orchestral layers. This movement takes a more animated tangent with a heavy and slow rhythm however which oscillates under sinuous reverberations of synth strata with howls of terror and some metallic-eclectic percussions/pulsations. A heavy movement with a slightly fuzzy rhythm where the reminiscences of Arc and Redshift are heard on murky pulsations and a diabolical piano which spreads a slight sneer on a rhythmic structure in perpetual renewal. The intro of Soliloquy envelops us in a soft, serene veil. In the distance we hear ticks that beat arrhythmically. A good bass line shapes a slightly heavy structure while Soliloquy deviates on a slow, sweet and sensual rhythm with nice crystalline percussions. The piano escapes and intertwines its notes among beautiful comforting layers, although always a little dark. It's a very good title, between beauty and darkness, which dispels the dark mists of the first 2 titles and which is intended as a good interlude before plunging into Entwined, a long ambient title with obscure ambiences where heterogeneous sounds furnish a long movement filled of black breaths which expire in a dark garden infested with metallic locusts.

The intro of Exit Strategy is steeped in a very creepy atmosphere. I hear inspirations from Johannes Schmoëlling as the tempo comes to life heavily with chords that transcend into ascending spheres. Chords which climb on a heavy and slow sinuous movement perfumed by heavy metallic layers and animated by a good bass line and heterogeneous percussions. The rhythm slips into an indecision where superb and strange sounds shape astonishing percussions on an endemic structure where suave and captivating metallic layers fly over beautiful melodious snatches. Hidden is a bit of Entwined mold. It's a dark and ambient title which takes shape with a nebula intro where fine scattered pulsations awaken a dark world and its dismal layers. The ambiences are vaporous with synth lamentations and metallic breaths which float and howl between metallic hoops with musical clicks. And quietly Hidden goes out in the introduction of Return and its uncertain rhythm which pulsates in a very intimate ambience where the mellotrons sings beautiful poignant melodies on a hesitant rhythm. Oscillating between two rhythmic phases, the ambient and the fragmented rhythm, Return progresses with slow wolf steps which span a rhythmic evolution constantly slowed down by eclectic musical elements and restrained impulses that the floating sails of the mellotron embrace of their vaporous musical mists. It's a superb way to conclude a very good album of a music always at the antipodes of its rhythms versus ambiences and harmonies.

Without a doubt, EXIT STRATEGY lives up to what we could expect from a duo fascinated by the art of modular. It's a great album where the shadows meet the melodious lights of a day sifted by the heavy sails of mellotron and synth as nebulous as celestial. Oscillating between slow, heavy and frank rhythms as well as somber ambiences of the unicorns of darkness, Boddy/Sirros succeeds in creating a unique musical atmosphere where the sonic quirks of Bakis Sirros are molded wonderfully with the very avant-garde musical vision of Ian Boddy. EXIT STRATEGY is an album to listen to with ears wide open. And the eyes will follow this astonishing musical journey.

Sylvain Lupari (May 19th, 2011) *****

Available at DiN Bandcamp

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