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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

Syndromeda Mythical Pursuit (2008-2021)

Updated: Oct 11, 2022

This is right up your taste if you like Black Mass' and cosmic witchcraft atmospheres

1 Mountaintop Consultation with a Slime Mold 12:36

2 Hidden in the Asteroid Belt 8:27

3 Crossing 2AU 1:44

4 Her Insane Majesty's Entropic Empire 18:26

5 Inside her Tomb 14:36

6 A Lingering Dread 5:00

(DDL 60:51) (V.F.)

(Progressive Berlin School, Dark ambient)

Second album of Danny Budts to come out of limbo at the end of 2021, MYTHICAL PURSUIT is one of those gems of contemporary Electro music that actually deserves to be brought to the attention of the fans of heavy and dark Berlin School. Initially released in April 2008 on Horizon Music, MYTHICAL PURSUIT has the particularity to evolve in concept mode around a short story by Matt Howarth, who could also be read in David Wright's The Lost Colony and Fanger & Schönwälder's Analog Overdose in the Applebaum Nebula. SynGate is re-releasing this album with the novel in PDF format without any other attributes than those already known at the time. So, no bonus, no remaster. The album as it is! An album with sinister and gloomy atmospheric music tendencies where the rhythms are to tap your foot or fingers on the arms of your chair. But the sound envelope is as dense as it is dark with good permutations between atmospheric zones and rhythmic revivals.

Mountaintop Consultation with a Slime Mold puts us in the mood with a rhythm line in building. Its flow is fluid with the constant cackling (Syndromeda signature) of the jumping keys. The echo of the cymbals accompany this ride of electronic sparrows that a delicious bass-pulse line accosts at the 30th second. Its flow undulates in ascension mode while the synth lights a bluish thin line to extend its prismatic hold. Percussions makes a discreet entrance as the synth raises the tension with calligraphic solos in an alien language. These solos draw acrobatic figures that glide and twirl horizontally in that tone so unique to Syndromeda. And as I already wrote in one of my reviews about Syndromeda, the sounds of his synths, solos and sequencer are unique to the signature of Danny Budts who has developed his own electronic music instruments. So, we are in his world when Mountaintop Consultation with a Slime Mold enters a spooky zone with sequenced arpeggios that have that mocking tone. A chthonian choir, winds of emptiness and a long spectral synth chant develop this gloomy phase that stifles the rhythmic threat of the track since its last beats spaced around the 5th minute. After an opening covered of sonic squiggles and absent voices, Hidden in the Asteroid Belt drives the sequencer with arrhythmic beats under a sky blackened with vapors and siren-like synth effects. A sedate rhythm develops fairly early on with electronic castanet claps that sound like a flock of magpies covering the morning excitement of a neighborhood life. This atmospheric turbulence calms down around the 4-minute mark, paving the way for a series of oscillations as sharp as a flock of rabbits on acid in a finale where synth solos attempt to realign the track for a 3rd time. Too short and almost rushed, Crossing 2AU features a sequenced melody from the Halloween mold which is fading out over a spasmodic rhythm structure.

It is in a dark and gloomy introduction that Her Insane Majesty's Entropic Empire rises to our ears. Layers of synth tinged with the blackness of apocalyptic trumpets multiply in an opening made up of organic noises where a ghostly melody also prowls. Driven by muted impulses, the opening gains ground until the 5th minute. From this moment on, the dark rhythm unfolds its progress with a bass-sequence line rolling in a cosmic territory. The synth pads hook a vampiric melody a la Redshift, or Arc, on a Berlin School movement coated of anaesthetic layers. The rhythm loses its tracks 4 minutes later when engulfed in a phase of anguished atmosphere. A short moment before it comes back in an ambience where knocks, spectral ululations and echo effects, sinister reverberations as well as synth solos accompany this Berlin School literally sculpted in Dark Ambient. Eerie and dark breezes provide the introduction of Inside her Tomb before an ancestral tribal rhythm sets up its first phase of hypnotic rhythm. The tom-toms are delicate and beat in an ambience of black magic. The synth injects a breath more sibylline than melodious over this soft meditative trance which awakens as gradually as its core of ambiences grows. Moreover, the sequencer unties a rhythm line that waddles innocently after the 5th minute. The night is black as the ebony tree's hollow with incandescent synth filaments as the only subdued light. These anaesthetic beats reorient to another, more animated tangent around the 7th minute, sculpting a zigzagging gait supported by the sequencer's jumping keys resounding of grey noises. A raucous shamanic breath and a twisting synth line surround this new, more spasmodic phase that dies in a drone-fueled finale. A Lingering Dread ends MYTHICAL PURSUIT with a rhythm built in a Mephistophelian lair. Good, intriguing and murky, it shows that Syndromeda has that knack for horror melody in his blood! 😊

An intense album in its own way, MYTHICAL PURSUIT is right up your alley if you like Black Mass' and cosmic witchcraft atmospheres.

Sylvain Lupari (October 23rd, 2021) ***¼**

Available at SynGate Bandcamp

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