PETER IROCK: Horizon (2015)
“Horizon is a solid album which mixes a wall of influences in the modern EM in a pattern of constantly evolving structures”
1 Horizon 8:01 2 Mountains Dream 8:03 3 Everest 7:47 4 Phenomenal 8:24 5 Moonlight 10:49 Peter Irock Music
(DDL 43:06) (V.F.) (Berlin School, E-Rock film textures)
A new name in my firmament of EM, Peter Irock is nevertheless not a newcomer in this wonderful universe of sounds and tones. Italian musician/synthesist who emigrated in Switzerland (Swiss), Peter Irock began his sound quest as soon as in his 17 years by composing and by performing his music during various festivals. Self-taught like his biggest influence, Vangelis, he then teams up with Lionello Ferrazzini in the 80's under the shape of the duet named Fairlight. Duet which hasn't made any known records yet but which gave numerous concerts of a more cosmic kind of EM. In 2010, Peter Irock makes a return with an album soberly named The Return. HORIZON is a 4th album which turns out to be a very nice surprise where Irock reveals all the paths of his main influences with a big 43 minutes filled of unexpected developments.
Tomita, Tangerine Dream, Jean Michel Jarre and Vangelis! The title-track explodes of these influences with a big and very pompous electronic rock where symphonic explosions a la Vangelis and Tomita splash an electronic structure in perpetual movement. An unstable structure which ablaze some unchained moments where the rhythms and its sequences kick down and nibble at our eardrums with perfumes of Tangerine Dream from the Miramar period. The whole thing starts with a wave of sequenced pulsations where the bass keys skip in a stroboscopic linear movement decorated of electronic graffiti. The approach is dramatic a la Vangelis. A line of sequences makes spin its ions which flicker in the shadows of heavy reverberations whereas, always, the sonic scrawls explode like ink stains on blotting paper. Synth lines, with harmonies torn between the influences of Vangelis and Tangerine Dream, temper the sound elements with beautiful harmonious solos while the explosions always shake the rhythmic crumbs of Horizon. Then comes a more ethereal movement, softened by tribal voice breezes and essences, which floats heavily under the threat of cymbals and of snoring and crawling bass lines. There is a scent of jazz in these synths! The title switches afterward for a more progressive of electronic rock structure with the presence of the alto saxophone of Hellmut Wolf, rooting down more this perception to be in the corridors of the Tangerine Dream's Turn of the Tides era. The music always remains anchored in a threat of rhythmic explosion with sequences which oscillates frantically in the strikes of the percussions while the saxophone clears the room in order to make space for a synth which is as much harmonious. After another brief ambiospherical phase, the rhythm stabilizes again. It's heavy and lively while the harmonies are pleasantly competed between a synth, a traverse flute and this alto sax blown by Hellmut Wolf. It's from this pattern that Peter Irock will expose the next 35 minutes of his HORIZON.
The introduction of Mountains Dream is forged in indecision. The atmospheres, fed by celestial voices and by explosions of electronic percussions, spread their threatening shadows among synth lines filled by a volcanic intensity and by very film orchestral effects. It's rather intense and gradually the movement adopts a more rock structure with good synth solos, one of the strengths of this album, which exchange its airs for those more rock of a guitar, played by Frank Steffen Mueller. The approach reminds me the good moments of MorPheuSz and I would like to draw your attention on the subtle play of the percussions rattlers which amplifies all the charm of this second furious part of Mountains Dream. Everest is a good electronic ballad which reminds me extremely the best of Vangelis. Orchestrations, sequences which dance in their echoes, percussions which stamp in the shadows of others, big rolling of percussions and the superb voice of Nanda Natukovis make no doubt as for Peter Irock's influences regarding this track. Phenomenal propose an intro sculpted in the supernatural with a multitude of rustles which whisper in a cosmic fog and in some very threatening breezes of a synth. Percussions click here randomly while the track goes to a very rich ambiospherical phase where the synth takes the shape of the apocalyptic airs of the descendants of Maya. There are lots of sonic flashes which remind me in the 82-83 years of Tangerine Dream here and the genesis of the rhythm is weaved in mystery with strange tones, sequences and percussions which sparkle in synth lines perfumed of ether. These sequences channel their fury to braid a plentiful flickering line which rises and comes down, pushing the rhythm of Phenomenal towards a solid e-rock arched on technoïd booms-booms. It's a short furious phase, very TD by the way, because the track is returning rather sooner in its ambiospherical envelope. Moonlight closes HORIZON with the same strength as the title-track has opened it. It's an intense track which is crushed by its multitudes rhythmic and ambiospheric turnovers where the influences of Tangerine Dream, for the tones, and Jean-Michel Jarre, for the cosmic effects, merge on a structure of rhythm which allies both influences; rock and technoïd. It's a great track with a finale which plunges us into these apocalyptic moods of Vangelis.
This HORIZON will doubtless knock down your senses at the first listening. Its numerous turnarounds and its plentiful references to the big names of his influences will doubtless destabilize your ears. But there is an impressive mosaic of sounds behind this music where the synths bring us to the reason with a strong presence that several artists refuse to exploit, giving a beautiful wealth to an EM where his main flaw is to run after all the flavors of its influences. A flaw of which the main quality on the other hand is to offer a music in continual movement with progressive, ambiospherical, rock, film and cosmic approaches boosted by great sequencing patterns and moderated by superb synth solos. A find which is worth investigating!
Sylvain Lupari (September 26th, 2015) SynthSequences.com
Available at Peter Irock Music