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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

SCHULZE & GERRARD: Dziekuje Bardzo (2009)

Updated: Mar 8, 2022

A very good album, too long, which is absolutely more magical in DVD

CDI 69:57

1 Shoreless Two 28:23

2 Bazylika NSJ 41:34

CDII 53:39

1 Godspell 20:25

2 Shoreless One 33:14

CDIII 48:10

1 Ocean of Innocence 41:32

2 Spanish Ballerina 6:38

Synthetic Symphony SPV 306872

(3CD 171:56) (V.F.)

(Ambient and Sequenced Rhythms)

There are some who think that the Schulze/Gerrard artistic union has had its day and that our friend Klaus should move on. I have mixed feelings about this, especially after hearing this DZIEKUJE BARDZO. Certainly, I miss his long-improvised wanderings where he was thwarting the prognosis by throwing an album that cheated time and that took us well above the beyond. On the other hand, I believe that there are still good things to come out of this duo whose duels and harmonies transcend what Schulze can make us imagine with his virtual choirs. If Lisa Gerrard had put the Master to sleep on Farscape and not totally on Rheingold, Klaus Schulze maltreats the diva of wordless chants on this album recorded live with divinely sequenced passages where the voice of his muse is as aggressive and biting as in the Dead Can Dance era. The most important thing to remember about DZIEKUJE BARDZO is that it's a 3CD box set that includes 2 concerts given in 2 days: one in Berlin and the other in Warsaw on November 12 and 13, 2008. For sentimental reasons to KS, 25 years after Dziekuje Poland, the Warsaw concert is much more inspired. So, in my opinion, a double album including the Warsaw concert plus, as a bonus, Spanish Ballerina, would have been more than enough. But Schulze being Schulze in all his excesses and knowing that all his concerts were pirated (hence the birth of the Silver, Ultimate, etc... Edition), he preferred to release a 3CD box set with the 2 performances which are similar except for a few variations. So, that's it for the polemic of some EM reviewers who think that the Schulze/Gerrard union has had its day.

The first 3 tracks are taken from the concert given in Warsaw, on November 13, 2008, that is to say hardly 4 months after the concert in Loreley (Rheingold) and Klaus Schulze brings out his armature of heterogeneous sonorities where voices and throat scrapings bathe in a strange climate of Muslim pastoral on a soft synth with angelic voice effects. Around the 9th minute a fine sequence takes shape on Shoreless Two. It floats while multiplying its arcs tinted with light whistles of mist on another sequence which undulates in a superb sequential fusion that few artists dare to play. A dance of cymbals is added to the movement whose undulation has taken over rhythmically. A choir of ethereal whispers grafts itself onto this sweet symphony set on chaotic but symmetrical rhythms, in the shadow of a synth that cuts its solos as abrasive as cosmic. It's like the link between the lost world of the analogue and the more pragmatic and robotic one that is the digital. And the rhythm undulates under twisted solos that stretch over it for ten minutes. The time to embrace a long ethereal finale with soft musical silk threads where Klaus spreads out all the architectural possibilities of his synths. Bazylika NSJ is the 1st Schulze/Gerrard communion on this new album from the duo. A long track divided like Shoreless Two with its angelic intro and finale, interspersed with a most audacious segment for a vocal performance where Schulze's crazy sequences marinate on solid percussions and an absolutely magical voice that bites at the heart of a frenzied rhythm. The divine intro shows us the power of Ms. Gerrard's vocals that Schulze supports superbly with his synthesized choir. A cosmic opera where the singer overhangs an unreal universe with a superb fusion of stimulated and artificial voices. Magically, Gerrard's voice borrows various intonations before hovering softly towards the opening of the hybrid sequences that jump from all sides around the 18th minute. And there we witness a musical duel where the rhythm, which undulates with aggressiveness, gets measured against slow but fluid orchestrations and syncopated sequences where Schulze pushes Lisa Gerrard in the depths of her ramparts, pushing the limits of a simple singer. A diva who spreads the spell of her voice on a more ethereal finale.

Godspell closes the Warsaw performance with a track divided in 2 times and movements. The first 10 minutes tackle a minimalist rhythm that pulses and undulates like a cosmic ascension on good percussions that hammer a progressive structure embellished by a superb vocal performance. A track where the vocal improvisation is as impressive as that of the synths and sequences in hallucinatory movements. With the quietness and sublimity of her voice, Lisa Gerrard alone feeds all the dreamy fantasies of the 2nd portion of Godspell where the artificial cellos gravitate around a voice with a thousand intonations that lulls us into an infinite idleness of the soul. Recorded the day before, the Berlin concert offers similar structures to Warsaw's, with a few variations. These variations are more present on Ocean of Innocence where heavy resonant chords sway heavily under the laments of a Lisa Gerrard who seems to be without limits. A soft celestial voice on heavy reverberations with claustrophobic resonance circles, she is in a superb vocal delirium while gradually Ocean of Innocence borrows the soft paths of Bazylika NSJ, as well as its heavy unbridled rhythms. Spanish Ballerina stands out with its intro full of anarchic vocals before a sweet Spanish serenade comes to polish off this crazy opening.

The only flaw of DZIEKUJE BARDZO is that it offers 2 concerts that are too similar. If one has the means of worship, there is no problem, although it remains a shameless exploitation of fanaticism. This will remain Klaus D. Mueller's problem of conscience. On the other hand, the Warsaw concert is a marvel where the gargantuan impulses of KS are finely supported by a superb mastery of the vocal cords from Lisa Gerrard who undoubtedly swallowed a synth in her childhood. A splendid voice which embraces all the madness of Klaus Schulze who on the other hand, acquits himself superbly well of the emotions of his muse. A very good album, too long, which is absolutely more magical in the DVD version which presents only the concert of Warsaw.

Sylvain Lupari (September 16th, 2010) ***½**

Available at Groove nl

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