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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

ROBERT SCHROEDER: Floating Music (1980)

“With Floating Music, Robert Schroeder redefined the genre and proved that the so said synthetic music could have as many visages as tones”

Floating Music ... 17:30 a) Floating Music b) Divine my Future c) Pastime  Out Of Control ... 18:34 a) Out Of Control b) Visions  c) Meditation for the Next Part d) Shadows in the Night e) Rotary Motion Rotary Motion V II 5:17 Rotary Motion V III 8:01

IC | KS 80.001 (CD 36:04) News-Music ‎| NEWS CDR-12.002 (CD-r 49:13) (V.F.)

(Berlin School, E-Rock, Cosmic Funk)

After a first album, Harmonic Ascendant, where the ambient and atmospheric structures were moulding to a deep romanticism, Robert Schroeder undertakes a first musical change of direction by offering a 2nd album filled of a very great wealth in eclectic tones. Here, no romantic guitars that flirt with a solitary cello or vocoders which roam in a cosmic mist, FLOATING MUSIC (whose title has nothing to do with its musical structure) is an album where the rhythm at once funky and sensual thrones among suave cosmic flights. A first change of course from an artist whose versatility will be the cornerstone of his musical charms. FLOATING MUSIC's 1st part is opening with a long twisted breeze coming out of a synth with quavering and spectral tone. A first sequential movement introduces a minimalism structure with a tempo fed of low felted notes where limpid chords of a fickle keyboard cavort. Hesitating, the rhythm of Floating Music follows the tangent of an unreal world where the sequential movement waves and moves stealthily among a thick cloud of synthesized laments, an outbreak of undisciplined chords and maracas which erode a tempo vitamined by a little bit funky bass and heavy percussions. Already the soft musical universe of Harmonic Ascendant flees by this heavy and minimalist beat which takes advantage of every chord to grow richer of a new tone. But the wandering spirit of Schroeder lives and can be feels a little more in Divine my Future where the tempo is discreet and drawn by fine pulsations which beat under galactic sound effects and beautiful pads of a mellotron synth which go down from cosmos like leaves fall in waltzing from a tree. It’s a soft eclectic interlude, because a more caustic and insistent sequence plunges Pastime's intro into the uncertain rhythm drawn on FLOATING MUSIC. Less funky but more sustained, the rhythm of Pastime is moulded in a sturdier psychedelic minimalism where each strikes of percussions and sequence chord initiate a sound renewal of an exceptional wealth for that period. Out of Control begins with small electronic chirpings coated by a somber synth layer. A cosmic envelope where twisted solos are entangled there whereas percussions alternate their heavy striking in concordance with resonant chords. Yet, Rotary Motion's track is drawing while a fine synth pad wraps this stillness rhythm from where fuse fine solos with well chiselled edges. Visions follows with its spectral synth line which dives into a swaying sea where crystalline chords are lulling in a soft swirl of an always so romantic synth. But the tension increases and Visions offers a finale a little less gleaming with fatter chords that dance agreements fatter which dance and gambol on a sinister approach before falling in the charms of Meditation for the Next Part and its notes from a quixotic guitar which draw a brief moment of nostalgia. A glum well framed by a foggy and melancholic synth which is lying down up to Shadows in the Night doors and its soft cosmic intro which quietly is leaking away in rumblings, resonant chirpings and cosmic that overwhelm the tranquility of Shadows in the Night. Quietly, the heavy structure of Rotary Motion is rising with percussions which roll and hit curtly, sequences with alternate striking and chords in form of suctions. Rotary Motion tumbles of a wild electronic rhythm, with its discreet funky bass, surrounded by furious synth solos. It’s a furious track that will become a Robert Schroeder classic and will draw the path to more explosive musical pieces that will punctuate his long career. This last edition of FLOATING MUSIC contains 2 versions of Rotary Motion. If number II is more aired and frees a more electronic approach with beautiful synth solos which roll up a structure always so furious, version III is closer to Jean Michel Jarre's synth pop style with a funkier approach and solos always so suave and twisted. FLOATING MUSIC won some prizes and allowed to EM of this circa to overflow towards a more rock tangent while keeping its cosmic aspect. That’s a cosmic electronic rock where the heavy and funky rhythm cohabited with fineness with brief floating surges. With FLOATING MUSIC, Robert Schroeder redefined the genre and proved that the so said synthetic music could have as many visages as tones. It’s a pivotal work in EM history because it gave a new drive to the use of synths and sequences which were amply going to furnish the new wave of synth pop music. Sylvain Lupari (May 1st, 2008) *****

Available at Robert Schroeder webshop

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