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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari


Updated: Jan 2, 2022

This is a good album for the aficionados of 70's EM with a nod to TD

1 Alpha Primitives 43:40

2 Streams 20:00

3 Hashra Simpel 10:35

(DDL 74:14) (V.F.)

(Classic Berlin School)

We can say that the musical adventure of Brendan Pollard, Michael Daniel and Phil Booth is similar from an album to the other, but it's always pleasant to hear it. And this even if the trio doesn't invent anything and takes pleasure in investigating and transcending the limits that Tangerine Dream defined with the fabulous Phaedra. POLLARD DANIEL BOOTH Vol. IV still embraces this nostalgic adventure of a vintage electronic music (EM) that PDB shapes since 2009 with the very first Pollard Daniel Booth album. We are still in the territories of a retro Berlin School from Ricochet to Sorcerer here. The England trio is even slipping some superb samplings here and there in this album which in the remains a good studio album built on improvisation sessions that will make the delights of the always insatiable fans of the Dream in the 70's.

Alpha Primitives starts this new musical adventure in the lands of the mythical German trio with a long atmospheric intro. Moving waves, long breaths with chthonian resonances, schizophrenic whispers and keyboard chords wander here and there between apocalyptic synth blasts. With its tones of bugles, this introduction spills its overflow of sound samplings reviving musical memories of a distant era that is best enjoyed with green grass 😊. Our mind drifts in a mellotron haze, as in the distance we hear a heavy wavy sequence. We're around the 8 minute mark and this sequence from the abyss reminds us of a bit of Phaedra's rhythms and shakes up the inertia of Alpha Primitives with another sequenced line that ties in. These two elements forge a sublime moment of the sequencer swapping and scrolling its rhythmic vision in a rapid flow under twisted hazy synth lines. The sequence splits, subdividing a hyper nervous rhythm that undulates with frenzy under nice mellotron layers. A delight for the fans of Tangerine Dream, still Phaedra era! This storm of the sequencer calms down towards the 20th minute, where everything returns to square one of the atmospheric introduction. Clearly divided into 2 fractions, Alpha Primitives embraces an atmospheric sweetness with limpid chords that are pushed by the wind of mellotrons and some more serene voice layers. Guitar solos hang around. Beautiful solos that cling superbly to this desert ambience, just before a sequence with nervous chords undulates with heaviness, always caressing in passing the sweet memories of a youth forgotten in the sequences, mellotrons and synth of the 70's.

Streams begins with piano and keyboard chords that resonate softly in a dreamy nothingness. Lonely chords that stroll and scroll like sonic stars under the tunes of a soft mellotron's flute. An intro of reverie in a fauna of scintillating arpeggios which dance and jump delicately around a mellotron and a synth which spread out mist, dreamy flutes, and twisted solos in an opening where the poetic softness dissipates little by little to make room to these nervous and undulating sequences which draw a rhythmic that we recognize only too well to have heard it in Ricochet. The music then scrolls some samplings of The Call and Ricochet with symphonic synths which make duel to a guitar under a dreamy sound background where the keyboard chords sparkle like sound prisms which never tarnish. Hashra Simpel closes this Tangerine Fest album with a strange cosmic blues à la Ashra Tempel where Michael Daniel's guitar lays down delicate solos under a sequenced bass line, muffled cymbals and discreet piano notes.

Yes, POLLARD DANIEL BOOTH Vol. IV is a good album for the aficionados of 70's EM. An album with a nostalgic tenderness and a rhythmic fury that comes straight out of Tangerine Dream territories. Alpha Primitives and Streams are two solid tracks that you can listen to over and over again and that make you say. Ah...if TD story was told me, it would be by none other than Pollard Daniel Booth.

Sylvain Lupari (January 3rd, 2011) *****

Available at Pollard Daniel Booth Bandcamp

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