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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Perceptual Defence & Syndromeda Wormhole (2015)

Updated: Oct 11, 2022

“Fuzziness rhythms, sinister moods and a huge apocalyptic sound decoration; Wormhole is an album yet difficult to tame which hides nice treasures”

1 Into Dark Space, Beyond Fear 15:41 2 Approaching the Wormhole/Inside the Black Vortex 20:23 3 The Discovery of the Unknown 25:51 4 Into the Alien Machine 15:53 SynGate Luna | CD-r PDSS2

(CD-r 77:48) (V.F.) (Ambient, psybient and sequencer-based EM)

The introduction of Into Dark Space, Beyond Fear plunges us directly into WORMHOLE with a cry of fear of which the last breath gets lost in heavy circular reverberations which sweep the darkness of its beams filled with industrial dusts. Rumblings of machines join this ode to despair which little by little seeks for its resources. A beating appears a little before the 5th minute. The pulse is in a series of 3. And its shadows forge an ambient rhythm which oscillates on the spot, entailing the glaucous breath of a bass line and its spectres which eliminate its mean source. It's in a rich climate of fright where squeak blades of metal and whir some metallic bangings that Into Dark Space, Beyond Fear pursues its somber procession which falls over slightly at around the 8th minute with a line of sequences and its keys which flutter like the last beams of a flashlight which tumbles down a long steep slope. It's a small rhythmic jolt which will fade in the heavy layers and their ochred drizzle and of this ascendancy which breathes a dread mood which, little by little, melts in the last beating of this long track which in the end introduces us in the sordid universe of Perceptual Defence and Syndromeda.

Noises and ambiences dense and rich in nuances. Fuzziness rhythms, and sometimes just as much ambient as the sinister moods, which crawl under intrusive some ambiospherical, otherwise ambiosonic, synth layers and an apocalyptic sound decoration which bring us near hopelessness; WORMHOLE is an album as disturbing as Fear of the Emptiness Space. This time the tandem Perceptual Defence & Syndromeda explains his visions throughout 4 long tracks built a little in the same mold but with variations which testify of their perspicacity to want constantly redefine the progressive ambient kind, even a little bit psychedelic. And they have it easy, because Dany Budts and Gabriele Quirici pursue here the sonic quest of an unreal world which suits so well their boldness. An album difficult to tame? Of course, it is. But an album which also hides its treasures as we accept to let the minutes pass by with the curiosity of this album needs. Dark and invasive winds! They are a dime a dozen here. And they give a very sinister opening to Approaching the Wormhole/Inside the Black Vortex. One would imagine to be on Mars, besieged by a heavy radioactive sandstorm. The pulsations liven up the ambiences also at around the 5th minute. This time the structure of the rhythm is more accentuated and more steady with a troop of keys which oscillate and skip. Some of them with organic tones. The rhythm remains passive, drawing a slow procession with impatient keys which skip in the echo of its forerunner. In fact, the rhythm seems near the instability when that a heavy sequence moves forward with large steps and defies the sonic storm which always stood back. These two elements will forge an always processional rhythm which will find refuge in the multiple streaks and intergalactic breezes before returning with more ferocity in a finale which adopts some of Tangerine Dream's most furious sequenced rhythms. It's mad race of a half-dozen of minutes which will crumble down in the corrosivity of the Martian breezes. I quite liked that! The long The Discovery of the Unknown takes a little bit the same shape, except that the winds are soaked of rustlings, of jingles, of terrified voices and resound of gongs. The rhythm extricates itself from this distressing introduction with a good meshing of sequences of which the tones of percussions peck at the thin hopping of the mean line. Some sinuous solos sing over this rhythmic progression, varying their airs which whistle like those flavors of Klaus Schulze in his years of ether, also giving a tribal approach with a timbre of what sounds like a muted didgeridoo. More limpid keys invite each other in this hopping dance, molding a more nervous rhythm with two opposite elements which form the assizes of a structure as complex as passive. Because in WORMHOLE the rhythms are cerebral and make react our two ears and so our two hemispheres. The Discovery of the Unknown plunges again into a black ambient phase where the guttural breaths and the dust of sonic discords are wrapping beatings scattered in an obituary atmosphere. A small end of rhythm is reborn some 7 minutes farther. A discreet rhythm which seems to climb the mounts of the unknown where winds and their ochred materials are even more omnipresent. Strange pulsations of a huge and strange insect equipped of suction cups sculpture the very ambient rhythm of Into the Alien Machine which overflows of a fauna of colorful noises and of sordid atmospheres. Here also the rhythm gets loose at around the 5th minute to take the shape of a gallop of which the ample arabesques are trapped by other ghostly beatings. Some sinuous solos spin all over and accompany this structure of rhythm which ploughs into with quite a certain velocity into a hallucinating sound decoration where winds are hammered by percussions of which the violence of the knocks sculpture effects of cosmic waves. That's probably the best, if not mine, track in this WORMHOLE.

Nope! It ain't easy to tame the music of Perceptual Defence and Syndromeda. It's the abstract sonic art at its very weird side sculptured in the boldness and the complexity. Dany Budts and Gabriele Quirici flood our ears here of a myriad of synth lines with colors and tones which confront constantly and become tangled in a sonic decoration which fills our ears, and our listening room, of a rich music wave to the thousand nuances. The addition of the structures of rhythms, sometimes too short-lived, bring the music to another level, making thus the intimate links between the ambient music and the sequenced rhythms of an EM always at the diapason of its audacious possibilities.

Sylvain Lupari (June 18th, 2015) ***½**

Available at SynGate Bandcamp

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