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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

SHINPAL: Seven Lives (2019)

“On a musical canvas approaching 50 minutes,Seven Lives seems to center on the model of the Pacific School with a zest of Manuel Göttsching”

1 Motion in Horizon 4:49

2 The Eight Million Gods 7:11

3 Something on Dark Moon 6:26

4 Deepmind in Silicon 6:23

5 Silence in Horizon 6:53

6 Boundary from Nature 7:44

7 Seven Lives 6:48

(CD/DDL 46:17) (V.F.)

(Pacific School)

Another new name gets added to the impressive list of musicians practicing their art on SynGate. Shinpal is a Japanese artist who composes meditative music with strong accents from the Pacific School, at least on SEVEN LIVES. On a musical canvas approaching 50 minutes, the Osaka musician projects his musical influences that seem to center on the model of the Pacific School to a structure of Dance Music and the new steps of cha-cha-cha such as imagined by Manuel Göttsching. This musician-synthesist seems quite prolific with his 9 albums that have been produced since 2017. SEVEN LIVES is his 8th album and his first on SynGate Wave.

And it's with a peace of mind that Shinpal undertakes the quest for our ears, of our senses with Motion in Horizon. This ambient title is built on warm waves that frolic in a spirit of serenity. These ambiences are disturbed by more aggressive lines in which a slow spherical waltz is formed, or yet these suspended clouds whose astral colors paint the northern lights. The Eight Million Gods is a title that sounds strangely like old Steve Roach, Traveler/Now, with a sparkling arpeggio ballet spinning with a musical cannon effect. The delicacy of this choreography twirls our spirit with singing glass tones. I found it very nice and especially very musical. With its oblong shadow woven in a dark but comfortable wooshh and sound effects of the old cosmos of the 70's, Something on Dark Moon gravitates around arpeggios hesitant to create a spontaneous rhythm. This is a bit of a darker answer to The Eight Million Gods, except for this line of sequences that paces a Berlin School road under twinkling stars. The rhythm is more ambient than animated, but livelier than the previous title. This shadow of the synth, which serves as the ambient base, bears the colors of a certain Michael Stearns with a hesitation between the moods of Chronos and M'Ocean. But this last album of the American synthesist has certainly please to Shinpal more than we think, just by judging the backdrop of Deepmind in Silicon which hosts a spasmodic movement of the sequencer and arpeggios whose nasal chants are clauding and turning around in a short spiral without a way out. Let's say that the convulsive effect of the sequences and arpeggios are shady to this sea-fabric that waves lazily in the background of Deepmind in Silicon. And if we fall for this M'Ocean album, Silence in Horizon will seduce you with its long and languid caresses of its ambient lines. One moves from one subject to another by listening Boundary from Nature which projects us in the beats of new dances of Ashra and/or Manuel Göttsching. The arpeggios move like a jerky electronic bossa-nova in an atmosphere pecked by these delicate percussive tinkles that adorn the majority of SEVEN LIVES titles. It's ok, but I like the original better! Unlike Michael Stearns' soft structures that have not been overused by other artists. The title-track concludes this album with a structure where these live chords in Boundary from Nature become more vaporous in contact with the moods of Something on Dark Moon, demonstrating the clear influence of Michael Stearns on this first album of Shinpal on SynGate. I would like to hear more to get a better idea! In the meantime, it's a good album like dozens of others are in the ever-changing spheres of the Berlin School style EM and of its derivatives.

Sylvain Lupari (August 13th, 2019) *****

Avalaible at SynGate Bandcamp

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