PRZEMYSLAW RUDZ: Self-Replicating Intelligent Spawn (2010)
Updated: Jan 5
“There are great moments of music hidden within those complex titles in this album”
1 Stroll Along the Paths on a Chip 5:59
2 Neuronal Disorders Inside a Silicon Brain 13:35
3 The Race Towards a Knowledge 4:04
4 The 20th Century Dark Echoes 9:48
5 Short Message to Tomorrow 3:37
6 Giant Leap for Mankind 23:45
7 Home Again 7:40
(CD/DDL 68:19) (V.F.)
(Progressive Berlin School)
It's a bit difficult to tame the universe of Przemysław Rudź. A musical universe full of paradoxes where the Polish composer and synthesist delights in introducing a multitude of electronic sounds drawn from eclectic sources on structures in constant mutation, and this regardless of the time, in ambiences sometimes cosmic, dreamlike, morphic or intensely rhythmic. SELF-REPLICATING INTELLIGENT SPAWN is the last part of a trilogy that started at the end of 1999 with Summa Technologiae. A trilogy taking shape as each of the first 2 albums was born and which tells the story of humanity in the 21st century. A surprising album where, like his icon Jean-Michel Jarre, the musician destabilizes his listener by an astonishing diversity in his approaches.
Stroll Along the Paths on a Chip opens the album with percussions, like tablas and congas, and some whistling cymbals. Piano notes add a melodious nightclub dimension with a lounge feel. A bass line isolates and undulates with strength and surrounds itself of heavy muffled pulsations, interrupting this soft jazzy intro to plunge the title into a more electronic mood. Sequenced arpeggios shimmer and bounce, sculpting a choppy, nervous rhythm that bounces along on good percussions, while a synth with brief melodic breaths and twisted solos goes for the melodic portion. This first track catches the ear instantly, as does the very nervous and animated The Race Towards a Knowledge, with its hybrid solos and roaring rhythm, as well as the technoïd and heavy Short Message to Tomorrow that would make a dance floor take off while taking us to the land of dreams with its romantic chorus and symphonic synths. Short and catchy tracks that are inserted between other more audacious ones, like Neuronal Disorders Inside a Silicon Brain, a track that bears its name very well with its almost metallic intro that scratches the brain cells. Huge synth layers tear the webs of cosmic void to stimulate the neurons of a latent schizophrenia. They howl with their metallic magnetism between a pure atony and a disparate melodious movement that tries to pierce this wall of heteroclite sounds. Behind these syncretic sound panels radiating heavy reverberations, we sense a dramatic effect taking shape. A beat is slowly taking shape around the 6th minute with a nice sequence of subdivided jumping balls. Balls that are splitting up beneath a sky full of intriguing reverb effects and sound serpentines passing by like the pearls of a broken necklace. A strange rhythm nests in the hollow of a nervous but static structure which undulates on a long stationary circular movement. It's a long static cosmic bolero that P. Rudź quietly coats of a melodious form with percussions that redouble in ardor under powerful reverberations and strident metallic streaks before hazy mellotron strings and a bouncy bass line try to make us forget its long eclectic intro.
The 20th Century Dark Echoes takes us to those ever-changing rhythms that crisscross Przemysław Rudź's work. The initial rhythm begins with a windy pulsing sequence that intersects with another, an ephemeral one, with a more militarized roll. A wave of synth haze hovers over this rhythm that percussions hammer in a dysfunctional way, not unlike the finale of Neuronal Disorders Inside a Silicon Brain. And the Elbląg synthesist's elusive complex universe unfolds in our ears with synth layers hovering over an ever-changing cadence under warm streaks reminiscent of JM-Jarre's musical universe in Magnetic Fields. Around the 6th minute, synth solos float and entwine in a firmament filled by a mellotron haze and sonic lizard, plunging the finale of The 20th Century Dark Echoes into an abysmal musical world where a heavy organ traces a dark tenebrous line, while a delicate sequence dances stealthily in. A long, extremely musical intro introduces us to Giant Leap for Mankind. A light and celestial wave floats among reverberations and stellar streaks which parade in a musical decor as much morphic as psychedelic. A long intro where reminiscences of Kitaro's first cosmic tracks with a very Floydian floating synth graze the ears. A cosmonaut's voice, that we heard too often, emerges from this morphic intro around the 9th minute, stirring up rhythmic ashes forgotten in Short Message to Tomorrow with stormy and nervous sequences that clash. Sequences that bounce without forming a rhythm and that undulate with a heavy floating synth and Japanese guitar samplings. More than 5 minutes later, a frenzied minimalist rhythm hammers our eardrums, seconded by a syncopated sequencer line that wiggles under twisted synth solos and a plethora of cosmic electronic laments. A hellish rhythm that heats up even more with a heavy bass line, enveloping the finale of Giant Leap for Mankind with an infectious warmth. Home Again concludes with a beautiful ballad. Piano notes are lost over a high tide as Home Again progresses to embrace an undulating synth line. A stunning poetic union that spills over into a soft, poetic and hypnotic rhythm with strange sequenced chords from a duck's gullet with a cold. Przemyslaw Rudz dresses Home Again with an astonishing sonic and rhythmic diversity unique to his style. Thus, piano notes, sober percussions, a warm bass line, chords tinged like those of a xylophone and a saxophone send Home Again into a musical universe where minimalism allows this dreamy poetry that cradles the cortex of the unloved and the tortured. I love this track!
SELF-REPLICATING INTELLIGENT SPAWN is as complex and twisted as Cosmological Tales, but you can feel that evolution and desire to seduce that drives Przemysław Rudź's creative instinct. If the album presents some passages that are a bit more difficult than others to tame (Neuronal Disorders Inside a Silicon Brain and The 20th Century Dark Echoes) there are some beautiful pieces of music hidden within it that demonstrate that ME never stops evolving and surprising; two of Przemysław Rudź's greatest artistic qualities.
Sylvain Lupari (March 30th, 2011) *****
Available at Generator pl