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  • Sylvain Lupari

ROBERT SCHROEDER: Ferro Oxid (2012)

Updated: Aug 16, 2020

Ferro OXID is a kind of musical will that Robert Schroeder signs for his fans with an album which is inspired by his first 27 works

1 Ferro OXID 11:15

2 Nature Processed 10:58

3 Reduction 8:01

4 Carbon Dioxide 6:02

5 Interaction 7:17

6 Time is Changing 6:36

7 Matter Decay 9:27

8 Acceleration 10:09

Spheric Music| SMCD-2028

(CD 69:41) (V.F.)

(A mix of Modern and Vintage Berlin School)

Robert Schroeder will never stop innovating so much as amaze us! With a title as playful as FERRO OXID, the sound designer and architect of improbable rhythms comes back strongly for a 28th lap where his musical researches, in all genres included, since Harmonic Ascendant reign supreme on this bewildering new opus which will amaze more than one. From his romantic incursions in the ambient universes to the rhythms slowly worn by groovy and lounge approaches, Robert Schroeder proposes more than 70 minutes of a lively and innovative EM where the antipodes of the Berlin School movements are kissing in structures that Schroeder pushes always and even more farther.

The first portion (Ferro OXID and Nature Processed) of this last Robert Schroeder's album is the one which surfs the most on the roots of Berlin School. Roots which soak unmistakably into a more contemporary sound but of which the structures always remain so antique. The title-track spreads its cloud of electric mist and its breaths of nuclear angels in an intro where the fragmented harmonies cry in the ringings and percussions eaten away by the iron oxide. These choirs and mists are eventually forging hoops, of which the hesitating shadows float as spectres lost in an apocalyptic atmosphere. Riffs are starting to stirs frantically, taking in their wriggling these hoops which become the harmonious elements of a circular rhythm finely hatched that percussions are striking and harpooning of a heavier and livelier approach. The harmonies of the MiniMoog are blowing such as ghostly lassoes on a structure weighed down by percussions slamming as the whips of the dances techno from the one-legged folks. And the first sequencer keys arrive, plunging Ferro OXID in a delicious mishmash rhythmic with sequences, at first galloping, which flutter in some sweet dislocated kicks and of which the dynamic alternating keys are swirling in a melodious intoxicating rhythmic pattern. And bang-bang boom-boom, the rhythm becomes blazing again with pulsations which slam in the harmonious figures of sequences, driving a Ferro OXID breathless towards the cybernetics meditative ambiences of Nature Processed, where waits us the romantic universe of Schroeder. We really have the impression to be soaked by the mystic atmospheres of Harmonic Ascendant on this track where a fine line of melody enchants in this lost world, painted in ethereal voices which hum over the sparkling of a brook abounding of amphibian birds. A universe outside of this world which charms a hearing dumbfounded by this totally unexpected return to basics from Robert Schroeder that a lunar rhythm awakes the soft pulsations of a union of percussions and of a pensive bass line in an atmosphere also morphic that unreal. This is a well placed 22 minutes that we listen to again and again before that we pass to Reduction which is a great funky-groove beat embellishes of a luxuriant sound fauna as only Schroeder can concoct. From these delicate percussions, clicking finely in the cooing undulations of a bass line with suave suggestive scents, the tempo oscillates with a digital slowness while growing its metallic intensity in the cold pulsations of the nuclear tones and the nasal lamentations of a synth, as morphic as orgasmic, whose harmonious aromas remind a scission of Double Fantasy. That's quite unique and very at the image of the steroidal universe of Robert Schroeder, quite as Carbon Dioxide which, while offering a similar structure of rhythm, skips off beat of its mid-tempo coated by a psybient fauna where the psychrotonic panting and solos to the always nasal harmonious forms decorates a rhythm torn by its ambivalence.

Interaction is a very beautiful lunar down-tempo. The rhythm is distracted and flows with the slowness of its echoing chords and pulsations, where are ringing cymbals and scattered drum rolls, in an abstract setting of lunar poetry with a synth which throws its contradictory harmonies on the carpets of a Milky Way bursting out of a silvery sound life. It's an organic slow dance in a psychedelicosmic fauna. Time is Changing is a good techno which with its intro tinged by an approach of Mexican tales and westerns. From meditative, with its strange chords of Hispanic acoustic guitar, the ambience becomes blazing with heavy pulsations which shake the anterooms of our eardrums and of which each echo whips up its multi-sonic harmonious particles on a structure interrupted of its rhythm bombarded by brief passages as much oniric as shambolic. The tones of MiniMoog are as well distinctive as mesmerizing all along FERRO OXID and the way Schroeder sculptures its meditative pearls on Matter Decay is extremely attractive. On a rhythm which hesitates to go out of its morphic torpor, limpid keyboard chords roam on mechanical pulsations. Swapping their musicality for breezes of crystal, they draw harmonious strands which cavort on the fine kicks of the percussions among which the ringings and the knocks on their shy skins are sculpting a very evasive rhythm. And this rhythm also switches shape for a fine stroboscopic filet of which the hatched outlines allow to be caress by the idle solos of a synth which abandons its primal imprints in order to breathe of neighboring harmonies with voices from an outer world which murmur in a so melodic wildlife that an organic universe can allow it. Acceleration concludes this Robert Schroeder's 28th work with an evolutionary structure which aims to be a beautiful conclusion to FERRO OXID. Pulsations sizzling such as the elytrons of wounded cicadas accompany the desert winds which uncork its first seconds. A brief and fascinating piano line lays the first melodic pattern of which the shade finds itself cornered in a musical life multi-coloured by some keyboard riffs, fuzz wha-wha and metallic pulsations. The first techno beatings arrive and Acceleration offers a linear rhythm which surrounds itself of streaks coming from a spectral synth. A synth which swarms of its colorful sound fauna, freeing also its cosmic voices which hum like chthonian choirs and leading thus Acceleration into an ambiospherical phase, there where some superb dreamy solos hang a sigh onto the ears. Revitalizing so a rhythm of a techno softens by the melodic approaches of the MiniMoog which has still full of mist and cosmic voices to spread on a delicate rhythm lost in its merger of morphic-techno.

Rarely the style of robotic psy-dance of Schroeder will have seduced me. FERRO OXID is a kind of musical will that Robert Schroeder signs for his fans with an album which is inspired by his first 27 works. We find of everything in there, in an even more sensational musical life if it can. It's the crossroads of a musical universe which, in any likelihood, will succeed towards other forms of ambiences and sound elements which will come to enrich the vocabulary as much musical as electronic of the magician of Aachen. What a wonderful album and it's highly recommendable to fans of any sort of EM.

Sylvain Lupari (April 9th, 2013) ****¼*

Available at Spheric Music & CD Baby

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