SOLAR FIELDS: Random Friday (2012)
Updated: Feb 14
“Once again I got subjected by the music of Solar Fields and this even if it exceeds the borders of an ambient and sequenced EM”
1 Light Control 4:57
2 Random Friday 6:16
3 Cobalt 2.5 7:32
4 In Motion 8:15
5 Daydreaming 10:42
6 Swoosh 7:40
7 Landing Party 9:37
8 Lift Off 9:31
9 Perception 10:35
10 Polarity 2:56
Ultimae Records inre051
(DDL 78:01) (V.F.)
A distant and sinuous synth wave pierces the black silence of space and introduces the first floating breaths of Light Control. Another line follows. And another one, more resonant, floats like a threatening veil, while the intro lets heard a multiplication of synth waves which whistle and sing in an iridescent mist. Random knockings resound when sound hoops ring in a cosmos studded with bright celestial bodies, loosening cosmic choirs which sing of their oneiric voices. A huge pendulum makes listen its tick-tock, introducing the first hypnotic rhythms of this album which quietly goes out of its ethereal ineptitude with the echoing pulsation of the title track. And RANDOM FRIDAY to parade such as an immense rave party to the colors of its music with boom-booms and tssitt-tssitt which pulse and click within floating synth layers and a multitude of electronic tones.
Getting free from the meditative and poetic influences of Until We Meet the Sky, Magnus Birgersson takes his musical project of Solar Fields at arm's length to create a powerful psy-trance album with 10 titles filled by schizotronic phases. Phases linked into an orgy of pulsations and beats which throb like loud knocks of hearts in a rhythmic ultrasound scan. RANDOM FRIDAY is forged into pure and hard pace with pulsations/percussions which hammer rhythms skipping furiously like one-legged on LSD. The title-track starts shyly. Knocks of percussions pile up such like vertical pulsations, joining outdistanced knockings and oscillations of a bass line which accentuates a pace on a movement in its on going rhythmic progression. As usual, the sound fauna which wraps the structures of Solar Fields is rich in diversity and in tones attractive to the hearing. Here it encircles a rhythm growing with robotics syllables, break-dance words, breaths of extraterrestrials and more ethereal synth pads while the bass line spits chords which throb and pulse frantically, leading the second half of Random Friday towards a furious rhythm abandoned to its electronic tones which gobble up the strength of the rhythm. Cobalt 2.5 begins in some cosmic spheres à la Jean-Michel Jarre and Vangelis before giving itself to a heavy pulsating rhythm of which the hits draw a heavy one-legged gallop. Percussions get tie to this linear rhythm, giving alternate knocks onto a rhythm which is bitten by tssitt-tssitt cymbals and rocked by some very nice waltzing synth layers. Divided in 2 times Cobalt 2.5 embraces a brief ambient phase before exploding of a heavier rhythm. Even if the rhythms are furious, the melodic approach of the album is weaved in synth lines at both oneiric and smoothing. On this level In Motion is the softer track and it starts with an oblong rhythmic approach of which the keys gallop delicately into electro-cosmic spheres submerged by electronic hoops. Daydreaming grabs this semi-morphic phase to lay a more steady rhythmic approach. It’s a heavy pulsating rhythm seized by jerky synth pads which draw a very nice stroboscopic approach.
Pulsations forged in the suctions of mono-rhythmic suckers feed the intro of Swoosh which sees its latent rhythm being buried by superb morphic synth layers. We have the illusion to glide over a cosmic beat when some heavy pulsations harpoon this dance of winds to forge a rhythm filled by sequenced alternative keys. A rhythm which hiccups of its spasms and which is encircled by finely hatched harmonic lines, amplifying the stroboscopic effect which feeds the melodic approaches of RANDOM FRIDAY. The percussions resound with their hesitations in the intro of Landing Party which bends over the waves of synth cooing in a superb fusion of choirs and ethereal lines. They slam à la JMJarre in a cosmic broth intro when a threatening wave rises in background, awakening sequenced loops and sinusoidal boom-booms which begin the permutating rhythm of Landing Party. That’s another heavy and resonant rhythm which bubbles among wave-like synth layers while fine sequences strum a tempo weakened by more ambient layers. Hesitating in its rhythmic approach but secured by its sequenced truncheon knocks, the rhythm of Landing Party progresses among its poly-cadenced phases before exploding of an apocalyptic finale. The percussions of all kinds play a dominating role on this Magnus Birgersson's last work. And in Lift Off, they reach their technoïd paroxysms with a powerful bewilder rhythm which is not without recalling the drums of Juno Reactor in Conga Fury. Another polyrhythmic title, Perception evolves towards its heavy and furious oscillating phases which structure an intense dishevelled rhythm. The wildest and stormier one of RANDOM FRIDAY that our ears, and our feet, welcome with necessity the disoriented comfort of Polarity.
Once again I got subjected by Solar Fields' music and this even if it exceeds, and by far, the borders of an ambient, floating, and sequenced EM of a Berlin or Netherland School kind. Furious? Absolutely! But beyond the rhythms hammered with a concreted fury, the psy-trance universe of Solar Fields is of a surprising wealth which shows all the skill of Magnus Birgersson to merge his rhythms of lead into silky layers, allying psychedelic electronic music in a more ambient, even kind of oneiric one. Even if that knocks with loudness. Even if that explodes of deafening rhythms, RANDOM FRIDAY keeps a stunning harmonious envelope which raises this last opus of Solar Fields among the great releases of psy-trance music. I loved it and I still played it loud!
Sylvain Lupari (May 16th, 2012) *****
Available at Solar Fields Bandcamp