PERCEPTUAL DEFENCE: TimeLines (2015)
“This is a colossal work at the greatness of Gabriele Quirici's inspirations who develops here a series of ambient rhythms that will seduce”
CD 1 Personal Time 74:34
1 Dreaming Time 8:43
2 Time Travelers 8:44
3 Time Lines 9:14
4 Meditative Times 12:43
5 Hypnotic Lines 8:16
6 Walking Time 8:39
7 Child Time 6:40
8 The Circular Sound (Healing Time) 6:35
9 Saluto ad una persona importante (Sad Time) 4:56
CD 2 Friends Time Lines| 78:53
1 Inner Space Time (Syndromeda) 9:36
2 Friends Time (Waveman) 9:04
3 Metaphysical Time (with Gerd Weyhing) 9:20
4 Ricochet Time Lines (with Rewo) 4:09
5 Subway Time to Castro Pretorio Station (with Ian Keely) 7:03
6 Silence Time (with Alluste) 11:27
7 Cosmic Time (with Pharamond) 5:16
8 Rainy Time (with Michael Brückner) 11:16
9 Reflection Time (with Tau Ceti) 4:48
10 Moments Frail (with Antara Annamarie Borg) 6:47
(2 CD-R/DDL 153:27) (V.F.)
(Dark Ambient, Berlin School)
Sound graphic and designer for a music which is a choreography for dreams, Gabriele Quirici amassed during the last 5 years a multitude of sound thoughts inspired by some emotional moments. Behind a sequencer and an Arpeggiator, he amused himself by composing short music pieces. Rhythmic loops which suit the shape of his emotions. TIMES LINES is the fruit of these momentary strikes of emotion. Initially, these very personal reflections would have found its place on a double album that would have includes only his music. The music of Perceptual Defence! But after mature introspections, he has rather decided to split the album into two parts. The CD 1, entitled Personal Time, would be very introspective, while the second CD would offer the possibility to some of his friends' musicians to compose their music through these loops of rhythm that would be more personal to them. The result is strange, eclectic and fascinating. Because beyond the appearances of rather complex rhythms molded by impulses of arpeggios, the shadow of Perceptual Defence keeps a close watch on this incursion of the Italian synthesist in the sonic sculptures of the New Berlin School and makes sure that TIME LINES stays under the bosom of the works to the dark and experimental flavors of Perceptual Defence.
Synth lines singing such as interstellar whales welcome the fragile rhythm of Dreaming Time of which the race of the arpeggios is drawing movement of back and forth. This ascending movement becomes more fluid, or less static, freeing even shadows, some are more crystal-clear, which pound in a freer style below a sky multicolored by musical lines which have become now more sibylline. Time Travelers dissipates these nuances between the chants of the synths with a violent rhythm which flutters like a seagull trapped in the tempest of the Pacific winds. Winds which sometimes moo with somber metallic impulses, destabilizing the race of the arpeggios which struggle fervently in an agile static ballet. Always in a membrane of motionless rhythmic ritornello, the title-track offers a more fluid approach where two lines of harmonious rhythms, one with a very boosted flow and the other one with a more waddling approach, crisscross their minimalist airs under the breezes of a synth and of its aggressive twisted solos. In spite of the swiftness of the arpeggios and the charm of their sometimes-destabilizing cadences, the rhythms which widen nevertheless a gap between the very ambiospherical approach of Gabriele Quirici and the model of driven based sequences rhythm of the Berlin School style remains rather ambient. No matter the forms, except for the superb Meditative Times whose sonic decor reminds that of Software in Electronic Universe. Here, the rhythm eventually imploded with keys which pound in all directions, drumming a rather abstract cadence which awakens a foot stomping. One could believe to hear a piece of music mislaid in the vaults of Software. It is very good, like Hypnotic Lines which also adopts this ambient-cosmic vision with keys which follow each other in a crocodile line, adjusting their flickered beatings in nice corridors filled of star dusts. Walking Time offers a more delicate rhythm, always so harmonious, with arpeggios which skip in a mess of synth lines filled of chirpings, of rhythmic loops, of cosmic mist and of ethereal voices. The finale pushes Walking Time towards more psychotronic corridors with some very furious arpeggios. Child Time is a sweet electronic lullaby with keys which sculpture some very wide oscillations, dropping to the passage other keys which try to follow the pace. The movement is as oneiric than soft with delicate structures of crisscrossed ambient rhythms which coil up each other in a good melancholic veil. This is very nice! The more we move forward in the section of Personal Time and the more Perceptual Defence is offering sweetnesses. Even with its sequences which stammer in a little more jerky approach, the rhythm of The Circular Sound (Healing Time) throws a captivating aura of serenity. The keys make contrast with the slow veils of the synth which wrap up a pace after all very musical.
Birds of a feather flock together!
That cannot be truer than on the second CD where the music finds takers with the boldness of his friends. Let's say that it's rather eclectic and that we need to be curious here. We are resolutely in the lands of ambient and abstracted EM which bears the seal of Perceptual Defence. Written with Syndromeda, the storm of oscillations which pushes Inner Space Time at the borders of a cosmos a bit bitter and uninviting is in the same vein as the cosmic storms of we find in Fear of the Emptiness Space. I don't know the music of Waveman (John Valk) but I quite enjoyed the ambiguity of the ambient rhythm structure in Friends Time which unwinds its series of arpeggios in a pattern of parasitic rhythms and within a lot of cathedral sounding synth pads. It's full of carillons and the movement of sequences in the background that haunts the ear is very appealing. A good surprise here, while the heavy and stillness rhythm trapped in the synth layers and in the howling of guitar in Metaphysical Time is going to graze the timorous ears. I must be honest here; my hearing holes have suffered! And it doesn't get any better with Ricochet Time Lines and its multiple oscillation loops which wave in a heavy ambient pattern decorated of very experimental tones. TD on LSD! On the other hand, I like those furious oscillating loops which eat up the pace of Subway Time to Castro Pretorio Station which is really shaping the race of a train in a very colorful electronic soundscape. Silence Time is the most beautiful moment of this album where Alluste brings us literally in the lands of old Berlin School. It's as very beautiful and poetic, like Child Time, and the imprint of the Italian synthman is omnipresent. The rhythm is delicate, magnetic and follows a beautiful hypnotic tangent with collusive shadows under a beautiful electronic cosmic sky. Cosmic Time, with Pharamond, is more audacious. After a very ambiospherical intro which is knotted in sizzling synth waves and in singings of flute, the sequences run away in keen pulsations which eat up their shadows, creating a starving and undisciplined structure of rhythm which finally converges into a nice but too short Berlin School. Rainy Time offers another structure of loud and dark rhythm which imprisons its fury into long ambient corridors. The oscillations run against synth layers which waltz in opposite currents. The track deserves to be known more deeply in order to appreciate all its nuances. It's Michael Brückner! Thus it deserves that we give an attentive ear because the music is always on an evolutionary mode and is ending with nice undulations filled by perfumes, as much oceanic than esoteric. Reflection Time hides its slow and brooding rhythm, like the march of a thinker, in a torrent of black breezes from some very sinister twisted shadows. I like the echo of the tap-dancing which gives a mesmerizing depth to the rhythm. The voice of Antara Annamarie Borg carries the dark and almost apocalyptic ambiences of Moments Frail out of the limits of this double-album, ending so a very polyvalent opus where the thoughtful moments of Gabriele Quirici saw the light of day behind some great modulations of sequences and arpeggios.
When we take a closer look to it, TIME LINES is a colossal work to the measure of Gabriele Quirici's inspirations. Contrary to the sound envelope of his Perceptual Defence project, the Italian synthesist develops here a series of rhythms, for the most part ambient, which adapt themselves to all forms of listening. The approaches of New and Vintage Berlin School is merging in envelopes as ethereal as cosmic, allying those of Software to Klaus Schulze without denying Tangerine Dream, I think here of REWO and Pharamond collaborations. So, there is of everything for all tastes and some of the lengths pass well enough if we really want to dive into the experimental spheres of Perceptual Defence. There are some very beautiful moments in this album which is a real demystification of the Arpeggiator.
Sylvain Lupari (February 24th, 2015) ***½**
Available at SynGate Bandcamp