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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

STAN DART: Murinsel III (2020)

Even if it isn't my cup of coffee, this Murinsel III ends up to be comfortable in the ears who expect quiet music in a Café-Lounge ambience

1 Fading Day 6:33

2 Rain 6:12

3 Klang des Abends 5:55

4 Birds View 7:17

5 Isolation (Album Mix) 6:13

6 Memories of Blue 5:26

7 Leavin the Island 5:45

8 The Moon (Album Mix) 7:30

(CD-r/DDL 50:57) (V.F.)

(Chill, Lounge, Down-Tempo)

The confinement of spring 2020 will leave its traces in our memories up until the ends of our roads. For artists, it was more often than not a source of inspiration which resulted in mostly melancholy music. For Stan Dart, those events have confined him to a solitude that he tamed for his 3rd volume of The Lounge Cafe Experience series, MURINSEL III. Except that here, the pandemic has changed the name of its famous musical café into The Lockdown Cafe Experience! And like the first two experiences, the EM is traversing to reach the side of the evasive melody anchored in a good Chill or Lounge style. A style of composition influenced by the period 90-96 of Vangelis with melodies abandoned in the interstices of his imagination.

Fading Day slips into these moods linked to the pandemic with a slow rhythm, weighed down by the many nostalgic thoughts that have guided its conception. Very sober percussions are linked to the ample oscillations of a bass line in a concept where the rhythm is too slow to dance and too fast to dance a slow. Already, the piano goes into Lounge mode by scattering the tinkling of its notes in a setting softened by the bluish haze of the synth pads. This melancholic piano makes tinkling its notes in a melodious minimalist carousel that takes me straight into the borders of albums such as The City, where the rock side turns into Lounge, and Oceanic. This bass line, this keyboard with crystalline notes and this cozy atmosphere oxygenate the main axes of the first 7 compositions of MURINSEL III. If the Chill and Lounge styles are still in the spotlight in the 3 Murinsel repertoire, there is a little sadness that covers this album whose last title, The Moon, will undoubtedly be Richard Hasiba's greatest commercial success. This slow rhythm and this hesitant piano have more life in Rain which is enclosed by a veil of twilight mystery with tearful synth pads which float all around it. Klang des Abends offers such a smooth rhythm, almost similar to the first 2 titles but with notable differences which play on velocity, such as the slowness of the music. Except that here, the tears of the synth flow in a vase dedicated to Robert Schroeder by the nature of the synth which takes the appearances of a saxophonist trying to charm the Moon, this only true companion who accompanied millions of people each night to through the duration of the global quarantine.

The same emotions are shared on Birds View which unties our legs with a rousing rhythm for mature adults in a Lounge-style coffee bar. Ditto for the lunar down-tempo of Isolation exposing a fragile duel between the keyboard and the piano which exchange their shyness for fragility in a universe where the synth is still imbued with the influences of the Aachen musician. The more we advance in this ultimate café for a containment experience, the more the rhythms gets lively while keeping the same melodious and ambiences' essences. A bit like in Rain, it's with the rustling of sea waves that the very melancholy Memories of Blue lands between our ears. And as Blue isn't too far from Green, we're not far from the Memories of Green's introduction from you know who. But here, I'm only talking about the opening… Well, Leavin the Island comes out of left field with its energetic and energizing rhythm where the bass line turns into a line of pulsations and the keyboard becomes more a synth. The inclusion of this playful title here is undoubtedly important since The Moon arrives some 6 minutes later. The critically acclaimed track was released as a single a month before the album, testifying to the commercial vision of this fusion between Electronica and dance music for mature adults. It's not my type, but I understand very well the infatuation of this catchy rhythm caressed by the sweet voice of Petra Bonmassar.

The music is sweet and beautiful. The link with Vangelis is tangible. It's therefore unthinkable to say that MURINSEL III is not a good album. It just didn't land in the good ears… although I didn't hate it. I even found that the emotions and the vision of the first 5 titles matched my reality quite well. But all in all, I think it's a pretty good album with a very charming melancholic vision. 😊

Sylvain Lupari (07/22/20) ***½**

Available at SynGate Bandcamp

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