REMY: This Is Not the End (2008)
Updated: Oct 20, 2021
“Sequencer variations on anguishing themes, an album where EM goes beyond our fears”
1 Return to the Dream 12:34
2 There's Something in the Air 6:37
3 Because it's Said 11:42
4 Those Days 9:36
5 The Great Escape 13:28
6 You and I 6:23
7 The Day Before We Die 11:24
(DDL/CD 71:48) (V.F.)
(Orchestral Berlin School, Cinematic themes)
Sequencer variations on anguishing themes, THIS IS NOT THE END is an audacious album where EM crosses the obscure meanders of a contemporary progressive music on crystalline sequences girded with synths' aromas as apocalyptic as its anguished choruses. A trip back in the time of Exhibition of Dreams or a catalyst opus that will animate your evenings of questioning and anxiety for sure.
Return to the Dream opens with an unfathomable intro. The rubbings of strings of an imaginary cello animates wanderings that float gently in a Dantesque cosmos. A dark, siderurgic ambience reigns in this hermetic, buzzing sphere, shaping a world of paranoia that awakens under the soft tinkling of a crystalline sequence, the promise of an enticing hypnotic melody that shimmers in the mist. Soft, gentle, the movement goes off on a dramatic tangent with orchestral arrangements worthy of a nightmarish thriller with thin synthesized streaks that envelop an increasingly heavy atmosphere. These reverberating waves marry threatening strata, opening the door to a finale that explodes of sensuality with a nice bass line, good percussions and a moaning synth. There's Something in the Air continues in this surreal atmosphere. Strange circles of sound sculpt an astral nebulosity where galactic choirs and ethereal breaths of ghostly sirens grow in a suggestive atonal penumbra which is fill with jangling percussions shoot in a dactylographic style. It's a world of arcade sounds that sinks in the stratified softness of Because it's Said and its hushed intro of soft percussions and resonant shadows crashing into nothingness. Gradually, the rhythm is agitated on a bass line and nervous sequences with metallic flickers. Awakening from its rhythmic atony, Because it's Said accentuates a processional cadence before melting into a percussive chaos where feverish percussions are shaping a zombie-like sequenced spiral, a heavy resonant bass and its submissive choir. Exceptional musical theater that reveals a boldness unique to great contemporary composers!
Those Days brushes an ambient world that languidly awakens to a groovy jazz cadence with a cold accordion-like synth. Superbly lascivious with a more than musical synth, Those Days is steaming of an abstruse desire before sinking into the neurotic madness of The Great Escape and its play of rhythms/non-rhythms on overdriven synths. A track at the borders of the madness of a certain Klaus Schulze which evolves in a musical complexity, and which leans on a solid play of percussions. Delirium and electronic delight that we unfortunately hear too little nowadays. After this delusions of grandeur, the superb You and I brings to the reverie with its soft introductory sequence which undulates in the dark corridors of Return to the Dream's finale and its feebly sensual bass line. The Day Before we Die takes up this sequence with a more crystalline approach. An intro that waddles on a limpid minimalism rhyme, girded by a synth with spectral mid-high-pitched breaths. A strange soundtrack of a virginal nightmare which resumes this choir with bewitching breaths and which charms under percussions with the strikes of typists. A beautiful finale to the disarming prelude of Return to the Dream.
This 7th opus of Remy is a daring work, full of musical twists and turns with sequenced similarities that surprise and charm, as much by their unpredictability as by their lyrical, even poetic endings. An album as it is made that too rarely in this aseptic universe of redundancy in lack of inspiration. Great obsessive music that astonishes and surprises at each listening.
Sylvain Lupari (May 7th, 2008) *****
Available at Deserted Island Music