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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Patrick Kosmos Monument (1988-2018)

Updated: Oct 9, 2022

“A very charming album which depicts wonderfully the golden age of modern EM such as seen by one of its truly but forgotten pioneer; Patrick Kosmos”

1 Monument 22:49 2 Sunburst 15:16 3 La Silence 3:46 4 Slowmotion 10:04 5 The Last Monument 16:07 Groove | GR-249

(CD/DDL 68:01) (V.F.) (Cosmic Rock, Berlin School)

Finally, here is a first review about Patrick Kosmos! And it's to Ron Boots that we owe it. Groove's boss has been very interested by the EM from Belgium since he has reissued the too good Let the Night Last Forever from Walter Christian Rothe. Two other reissues of WC Rothe albums followed, as well as a reissue of an album by AGE. And now, it's Patrick Kosmos' turn! Discrete at the level of promotional activities, Patrick "Kosmos" Wille De Wael has become better known with appearances at various festivals or by giving concerts in places quite typical for the genre (churches, planetariums, etc...). It was during these performances that he sold his cassettes, several of which contained his live recordings. His trademark! With the help of his brother Philip, Ron Boots plans now to reissue the catalog of Patrick Kosmos. And the adventure begins with MONUMENT, an album recorded in concert at the legendary KLEM-Day of 1988.

Floating from cosmos, the title-track drifts to our ears with the usual cosmic noises and sonorous filaments which draws lines of fire in the dark. Strange noises are added to this opening rich of its electronic discoveries of the time, whereas strata dragging a heaviness of weeping violins modulate a slow interstellar procession. Pulsations, very spaced, get graft to the movement which turns into a fascinating Berber song. This song hums a melody which seems ancestral and adorned of rattling and of good percussion effects. If the movement remains of a magnetizing slowness, it hosts other percussions, more vivid, and resonant sequences as the song becomes more fluty. This slow opening goes over the first 10 minutes of Monument. Subsequently, the rhythm gets lively with a battle of rattling and drums in glass tones and whose tumult accentuates the velocity of an ascending line of bass pulsations. The music explodes more than the rhythm when the 10 minute's point arrives. The charge comes from a synth and its angry solos which hoot like extraterrestrial effects in the Twilight Zone of the 60's. The percussions are still in mode tap-dancing while the sequences spit weight and the orchestrations add a dramatic momentum as strong than disturbing. A deep and intense moment which deserves its ethereal finale. Sunburst offers a less homogeneous structure. After an ambiospherical opening unique to this time, the music explodes into a good cosmic rock with orchestral arrangements, at the level of synth pads which sing while flying with their violin wings. Even though the percussions display this soulless drum machine tone, some are simply delicious and lead to a lively structure with sequences of contrasting hues, either be bass tones or glass tints. These sequences are the cradle of a long interlude with no sustained rhythm, unfolding rhythmic refrains which sparkle like a mad xylophone. They also guide us to the 2nd phase of Sunburst. Towards its explosions of philharmonic percussions, its ephemeral rhythms and its fluty songs which show Patrick Kosmos' skill on Mellotron, whose cottony mists remain throughout the setting of this MONUMENT.

Majestic in its seraphic envelope, Silence spreads out its melancholy coat sewn into harmonies guided by a synth, its shrill waves and its perfumes of a sharp flute. Everything melts into a beautiful lullaby whose radiation exceeds our borders. Impossible to not like it, Slowmotion is a title that makes me think a lot about Robert Schroeder, period 82-83. The rhythm is as slow as the title-track, but more animated by an excellent sequencer game, for the time, and its many percussive effects. The Last Monument takes a little bit of the essences of the title-track but in a more lento vision. A vampiric bass line modulates an overwhelming procession under a sky filled of stellar effects. Little by little, filaments emerge from this slow approach and they flee towards an acceleration of the movement. The percussions get stir up at the same time as the sequences and the astral harmonies get lost in a fiery rock fed by good, thunderous and sharp solos. On a purely electronic rhythm, this rock phase of the guitar merges with a synth and its orchestrations which take an impressive form of solos. This is the war between this synth and this guitar, nailing one of the most violent heavy cosmic rock in the spheres of modern EM. This violent 5 minutes looks for its ambient phase a little before the point of 11 minutes, bringing The Last Monument to a cinematic, dramatic and very worthy of an album that gave me chills more than once. Quickly, the next chapter!

Sylvain Lupari (July 4th, 2018) *****

Available on Groove NL

(NB: Text in blue are links you can click on)

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