ROBERT KALYOS: Quantico (2021)
Updated: Nov 18, 2021
“Kalyos feeds his 2 beasts in order to skillfully extract the rhythm out of them”
1 Quantico (Part.1) 27:21
2 Quantico (Part.2) 23:22
3 Particle 7:05
4 Quantico (Part.1) Single Extract 5:24
(DDL 63:12) (V.F.)
(E-Rock, Berlin School)
The year 2021 was a year of revelation for Robert Kalyos with a first album, Cosmopolis, that pulled him out of anonymity. Since then, the Italian musician-synthesist has reintroduced some of his old albums, in addition to the excellent Hybrid System of Variable Sequences. QUANTICO comes full circle for the current year with a solid album that shows his ease to compose and tackle long musical pieces. QUANTICO revolves mostly around 2 long minimalist tracks that Robert Kalyos feeds in order to skillfully extract the rhythm. And all this time, the musician aims melody and flirts with the Berlin School.
A two-tones synth wave makes undulating its long, resonant oscillations and furnishes a sound territory that would be virgin without it. Scarlet filaments appear after the 2nd minute. Embracing awkwardly these sedentary arabesques, they gravitate adding a little color to the opening of Quantico (Part.1). These colors disintegrate into dust, irradiating the contours of this waltz whose partner is now this oboe tone coming from a synth layer. The tonal intensity reaches its point of comfort 30 seconds after the 5th minute, where the sequencer drops a rhythm line whose opalescent keys dance barefoot on small rocks. Here too the movement has two timbres, while being convulsive. A harmonious synth line wraps up this frail rhythmic movement by using its orchestral depth. The spasmodic rhythm of Quantico (Part.1) hovers while waltzing in unctuous orchestrations. Magnetized that we are, time steals 6 minutes to the title when a good bass layer stimulates the static rhythm by inviting percussions to make tap-dancing. This shadow expands its amplitude with a mesh of bass-pulses that get excited in harmonies having a strange accordion bouquet. Jumping from one speaker to another, the rhythm progresses under broad reverberating layers to release percussions and percussive effects that sculpt an electronic rock (E-Rock) surrounded by techno symbols. The arpeggios and the power of the E-rock march in stereo effects, feeding even more an exciting phase that the musician sprinkles with good harmonies of a synth that flirts with the melodious themes of the French music and with the desire to make sing its solos. Very good!
A heavy drone radiates its reverberations to create the dark sky that will host Quantico (Part.2). The synth's bellowing forms semi-circles, creating a sound storm effect whose woosshh hiss with the heaviness of its darkness. One of these mooing activates a pulse that absorbs the reverberating masses to march them in a series of jerks down the cosmic road with one foot on the brake. The mooing change orientation to draw arcs with golden colors. It's at this moment that a beat hits an abstract measure which, together with the pulsating jerks, form the cornerstone of what will become the rhythm of Quantico (Part.2). Just before the 6th minute, after another melodically matured roar, the rhythm is born from an alternating movement of the sequencer. A key jumps from left to right, solidly supported by bass-pulses and percussions, in a dense haze with violin orchestrations whistling in its drifting axis. The orchestrations' surges keep this rhythm in a minimalist state until the 30th second in the 11th minute when another rhythm structure transitions awkwardly into another good, spasmodic and nervous electronic rock. Flirting even with the borders of the Berlin School, Quantico (Part.2) moves forward like Quantico (Part.1) under synths with hazy orchestrations and melodies before launching some good solos on a structure which aims to be more and more energic. Particles wastes no time in developing an alternate sequencer movement that structures a street gang anthem over a solid driving beat. Synth pads add to the jerkiness of the rhythm while another rhythm line increases the velocity. This line is replaced by a whistling synth melody that is always creative in QUANTICO. In the 3rd round, the synth and the second rhythm line join their charms to concretize this Particles in a good melodious E-Rock that can serve as an emblematic anthem of Robert Kalyos' music. The purchase of the download comes with a hidden track, a shortened version Quantico (Part.1), Quantico (Part.1) Single Extract which serves as a single to the album. And it is the catchiest part that is put in it.
I liked this QUANTICO! The way used by Robert Kalyos in order to feed his two beasts is a Cartesian vision whose only goal is to bring the listener to an emotional paroxysm that knows how to make the hairs on our arms dance. Intense, tender, melodious and raging, this album confirms the place of the Italian musician in the spheres of the artists whose next album we hear with impatience. Let's enjoy this one, and his 2 others in 2021 which are just as good.
Sylvain Lupari (November 18th, 2021) ****½*
Available at Robert Kalyos' Bandcamp