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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

STEFAN ERBE: Genesys (2017)

Updated: Feb 23, 2022

An overview of the possibilities of EM between Dance Music and Berlin School

1 Open your eyes 3:02 2 Near Zero 6:41 3 Spacedesigner 6:11 4 Equivocal 6:01 5 All the Stars 4:06 6 Two become One 6:38 7 Expedition Orbital 4:57 8 Axis 6:17 9 Gene 4:33 10 Incomplete 5:45 11 End of the Universe 5:04 12 Lightspeed 5:29 Stefan Erbe Music (CD/DDL 64:50) (EDM & Berlin School) (V.F.)

The visage of a cosmonaut in a universe colorful of the fuzziness from pastel colors; the artwork of GENESYS catches our eye and call out to our curiosity. Designer par excellence of an electronic intelligent dance music (IDM), by its tonal quest and its melodic tendency, Stefan Erbe comes back tickling our feet with an energizing music. Down from its 12 titles and its some 65 minutes, GENESYS is like a flying over the immense possibilities of an EM with its drift between the pure Dance Music style and a good old Berlin School without forgetting the delicate romances which cross this cosmos of which the unreal landscapes never stop evolving between our two hemispheres. And it's in a futuristic world stemming from Stefan Erbe's imagination that begins Open your Eyes. In an avant-gardist sound décor, an artificial feminine voice wishes us good morning. Flying objects whistle in the atmospheres while that some harmonious threads fly slightly with an unexpected innocence. Already, the sound painting of GENESYS settles between our ears with layers of voices and orchestral envelops which will sleep in background throughout the 12 titles of the album. The harmonious threads sparkle in more intensified arrangements whereas quietly, Open your Eyes goes adrift with more delicacy towards Near Zero. The game of the harmonious sequences lives in the introduction with a subtle variation in the tone. The bass pulsations (gnump, gnump) changes that, pushing forward the title to a good E-rock, rather danceable, loaded of very good percussive effects. The orchestral layers weave a kind of cosmic waltz driven by an Arabian heaviness. The music derives around an ambiosonic zone where one notice that the harmonious sequence of the beginning always breathes there of its innocent candor. A brief moment of calm which gives back to Near Zero its momentum for some 2 minutes to come. Already in these first ten minutes, our ears are stamped by a sound fauna which still hides other very nice jewels in the turning point of each track. Like in Spacedesigner which is a real machine of seduction. The rhythm is in the kind of cosmic down-tempo with good sound effects and a hunger for a Space Groove. We listen to that in loop my friends! Equivocal is more in the kind of up-tempo and Groove with a very lively rhythmic pattern which forgets at no moment the charms of the synths and of their solos. We forget the harmony aspect here, slightly noticeable, to concentrate on a pure dance mood. All the Stars follows then with a very beautiful cosmic ode which leads to forget us the absences of Vangelis. The arrangements are very well done in order to shake this lethargy of our soul after a too convulsive dance in Equivocal. After such a pearl, Two become One melts between our ears with thin lines of sequences which crumble between a vague melodious approach and an always uncertain rhythm. The fusion between the keyboard keys and the crumbs of rhythm forge a charming universe where everything seems to shine as much as there are stars. The percussions structure a heavy and slow rhythm where a synth is crying such as a saxophonist who scatters his gloom on the roof of the world. Fragile and uncertain, the sequences shape a spasmodic and circular dance, a Berliner rhythm, where are dragging these lines of synth as melodious as tearful. This is a track where the arrangements accentuate its mystery and its beauty. Expedition Orbital is divided between a slow rhythm and an ambient structure filled with sequences which fly slightly in a heavy tonal veil. Stefan Erbe crosses with dexterity the borders of artistic time by blowing these apocalyptic layers from the old musical essences of Tangerine Dream. In a cosmic vibe, this idea is even more brilliant. Axis dips us back into the universe of the rhythmic turbulences of Stefan Erbe's repertoire. Gene, it seems to be the name of the artificial intelligence, looks like to fall asleep in a good phase of cosmic ambiences where its rhythmic breath is cajoled by a seraphic choir. But Gene is Incomplete and reboots itself with a good movement, not too much disheveled, of cosmic dance. We arrive at the End of the Universe which ends GENESYS with a nice passage of ambient elements and of tonal poetry. Lightspeed goes out of the concept behind this last Stefan Erbe's by offering a lively Dance Music which is even more furious than on Equivocal. Between S-thetic² and Electric Garden, realized with Steve Baltes, and the very dance universe of 2Club Genetica, Stefan Erbe brings the destinies of GENESYS a little higher than the usual standards. One finds of everything in this album and everything is not absolutely botched! But not at all! The sound aestheticism here also reaches new standards of creativity with a tonal fauna which catches our mind from the first listening of this album. The IDM!? OK for me, when it's done with what it needs to catch my attention. And believe me, GENESYS has all what it takes to drag me in. Sylvain Lupari (February 3rd, 2018) ****¼*

Available at Stefan Erbe Music

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