THE ROSWELL INCIDENT: Adrift (2015)
“We are indeed adrift with this album filled of strong perfumes of vintage tones in this Adrift which is for those die-hard fans of old Berlin School”
1 Out of the System 29:45 2 Reaching the Speed of Light 22:58 3 In Search of the Ancient Dominion 17:55 The Roswell Incident Music
(CD 70:38) (V.F.) (Vintage floating Berlin School)
ADRIFT for drifting. Drifting like the music from this latest album by the brothers Koen and Jan Buytaert which is filled with these atmospheric perfumes from the ether years of the retro Berlin School. Under the stars, because the music was played at the Cosmic Nights 2015 festival and at the E-Live 2014 where in our living room with the eyes fixed where our ears are taking us, this 4th opus from The Roswell Incident follows the precepts of Escape with long introductions which serve as a rampart, except perhaps for In Search of the Ancient Dominion, to delicate movements of minimalist rhythms always torn by opaque movements of cosmic turbulence.
Hollow winds adorned with singing prisms open the long floating phase of Out of the System. The dialect of machines extends chirps which sparkle in slow orchestral movements imagined by fake violins which murmur like these words of comfort lost in oblivion. It's a bit like drifting in a cosmos filled with very fuzzy tones of chimes that sparkle under the caresses of warm winds. The orchestral whispers tenderly caress muffled impulses that move like waves under a thousand feet in the ocean depths. These waves become the accomplices of our solitude while quietly Out of the System deploys its arrhythmic armor where a sly structure of rhythm emerges between the clamors of an invisible crowd at the edge of the 10 minutes. Fluty synth pads harmonize their catatonic chants with sequenced pulsations, weaving a minimalist step that hops like a wandering one-legged man. The walk gradually accelerates the pace through many sonic graffiti that twist in the void of hollow winds. We are in the heart of retro Berlin School. As long as this approach reminds me a lot of Robert Schroeder from the Paradise era, especially with these murmurs which are added some 3 minutes later. This movement hits a knot around the 15th minute, restructuring this rhythm, always very relaxing, into a more fluid phase where sequences, some with voice tones, jump and sparkle in the gentle oscillations of a creeping bass line. A prism cloud encloses this movement whose velocity is constantly increasing where other sequenced keys add a weight of romance while Out of the System reaches its 4th phase with sequences which swirl under very good synth solos. This is what I call a very good Berlin School.
Reaching the Speed of Light is clearly more ambient with a heavy introduction charged with cosmic winds and sibylline waves. We must wait until the 12th minute to hear a structure of rhythm whispering in our ears. Again, it's very ambient with weak pulsations. The resonant beats freeze an echo where arpeggios dance timidly. The synth tears which float lead this improbable waltz towards a more animated phase, one has just crossed the bar of 18 minutes, where the rhythm trots gracefully under a sonic sky illuminated with electronic effects. In Search of the Ancient Dominion gets rid of this ambient introduction to set a rhythm that gets rid of winds, woosh, wiishh and synth larvae that force a strange harmony from the 3rd minute. The movement is fluid and crosses two lines of rhythms; one ambient with sequences which jump in their shadows and another, more discreet, with pulsating keys which jump with a desire to explode. The synths weave a psychedelic language with piercing and misshapen shadows that float with these winds of discord. Except that the announced explosion won't happen. The rhythm structure, apart from the pulsating line, is wrapped in an atmospheric decor that offers a duel between rhythm and completely unequal ambient elements. And that will be the spirit of Klaus Schulze, for these convoluted structures where everything is structured in a fascinating symbiosis emblematic of the Picture Music years, that will dominate In Search of the Ancient Dominion, thus concluding an album which is in the continuity of the previous works of The Roswell Incident. Yes, we were adrift! And this album is for aficionados of old cosmic Berlin School style.
Sylvain Lupari (December 23rd, 2015) ***½**
Available at The Roswell Incident