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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

TORSTEN M ABEL: Sequentrips (2009)

Updated: May 27, 2020

“More musical and less experimental than SynthsOrganics, Sequentrips is build around circular movements which blow on the ashes of Ashra, Software and Mind Over Matter”

1 Circular Movement 8:05 2 Garden of B 10:19 3 Beautiful Moments 6:39 4 Andhere Jangala 11:44 5 Iceland Slither 8:50 6 Tangling in the Modules 8:04 7 Audible Forces 10:09 8 Deja Vu 3:39 SynGate | CD-R TA-02

(CDR 67:29) (V.F.)

(Progressive Berlin School)

SEQUENTRIPS is Torsten M. Abel's 2nd solo album. It's an intimist album where he does a flying over his last two years and all the things that happened during those months. Intimist but not melancholic, because TMA serves us these ambiences that had seduced us so much on SynthsOrganics, to be release the next year and that I heard in first, where the spiral rhythms of a hypnotic Berlin School approach revolve in atmospheres that are at the diapason of a style always versatile and avant-gardism from the German musician-synthesist. SEQUENTRIPS is mainly an album of sequences. Keys that are charmer of rhythms, and which parade in lunar whirlwinds on tempos divided by electronic percussions and their ways of forging rhythms of a prog electronic rock unique to Torsten M. Abel's style who, by ricochet, has retain the services of Martin Rohleder. This guitarist has a style and dexterity that bring us in territories formerly created by Ashra and Mind Over Matter.

Circular Movement starts the slow sequenced voyage of SEQUENTRIPS with jumping keys which oscillate like two intertwined lines passively following electronic percussions. The rhythm is smooth. Multiplying these keys, weavers of rhythmic harmonies, in a minimalist pattern fed by a fusion between a bass line and arrhythmic pulsations, Torsten M. Abel spreads its keyboard keys which roam, pensive, on a finely jerked structure where are whistling some solos from a dreamy synth. Garden of B is a track of ambience which has a delicious procession. If at the beginning the track is without rhythm and bustling of an organic fauna where lie cawing and other heterogeneous and suspicious rustles, an embryonic rhythm takes shape with chords of a xylophone of glass which sparkle and ring in this universe in suspension. This ballet of chimed arpeggios resounds and forges a harmonious line which sparkles in the black breezes of a synth and of its cosmic waves when that the void seizes of our ears and that a sequenced approach offers its jumping ions a little after the 4th minute, drawing a limping rhythm which hangs onto the fall of heavy percussions in order to lead Garden of B into a heavy electronic rock structure where e- guitar and synth are exchanging solos in the mists of silvery ether. After an intro filled of cosmic wanderings, Beautiful Moments take roots on synth chords which dream in the forgetting. The approach reminds me Rick Wright from Pink Floyd when Beautiful Moments is waking up slowly with a pulsating line which draws sequenced circles in the fragrances of these chords to lunar harmonies. The track kisses then a fine synth-pop tangent with delicate percussions of which the slamming resound on a rhythm slightly stroboscopic where arpeggios of glass sing and hiccup in the airs of a beautiful electronic melody. A beautiful crossing between Ashra Temple and Mind Over Matter, Andhere Jangala plunges us into a universe of spiritual trance. The intro presents a smooth pulsation which beats of a slow hypnotic pulse in a tropical Eden for multicolored birds. A celestial voice lulls to sleep the cradle of our imagination which is chiselled by Martin Rohleder's floating solos. Quietly, a circular and hatched rhythmic shape takes root in the shadow of keyboard riffs and loops of guitar which harmonize their tones in a slightly increasing stream, livening up a psychedelicosmic structure which inhales the green smoke of a dreamlike synth and of a guitar with its sharp-edged solos squeaking on the crystal clear and sharp knocks of clanic tom-toms.

The hoarse breaths of Iceland Slither sweep an intro fed by fine spasmodic kicks which oscillate occasionally in lunar mists. These synth layers impose a calm strength and blow a morphic mood on a rhythm which of gradually explodes at the dawn of its 3 minutes with the fall of electronic percussions. The rhythm is soft. Hopping of a meshing percussions/oscillations, it gets a hold on the rotations of a line of sequences and of its jerky keys which swirl and waltz in this mystic universe where synths are singing the soft sweetness of the morphic fogs. Recorded live at the Happy Knobbing - Modular Synthesizer Meeting, Tangling in the Modules makes swirl its sequences of which the variable speeds gets interlacing in a superb astral ballet worthy of Software's most beautiful intergalactic impulses. Synths solos are weeping and they travel in stereo on top of this delicate stroboscopic approach and these finely jerky sequences which swirl lasciviously in a beautiful lunar approach. The rhythms in spiral and finely hatched are in the heart of the hypnotic sequenced trips in SEQUENTRIPS and Audible Force is not outdone with these sequences which draw a quiet spiral ascent. The percussions fall and bring out the intro of its spherical cocoon with a rhythm rather near the kind of electronic rock where charming synth solos go tangling all over this hypnotic sequenced tendril. And Martin Rohleder's guitar beats down on this chaotic twisted movement, freeing riffs and solos as much smothered than incisive on a structure which divides marvellously its envelope of sequences to hybrid tones which skip such as echoing riffs trapped in a musical magma which flows back to front. Deja Vu contrasts in this universe of rhythms embroidered in spiral with a very melancholic approach where Torsten M. Abel speaks to us through his piano about these events which profoundly affected him during these two years which preceded SEQUENTRIPS. It's soft and gloomy but at the same time unmistakably beautiful.

More musical and less experimental than SynthsOrganics, SEQUENTRIPS is a very good album from Torsten M. Abel who likes to thrill the listener with spirals of sequences to the hallucinatory rhythms. Rhythms which waltz with mixed velocity in order to adapt themselves to these ambiances sometimes lunar and sometimes explosive of an album which blows on the ashes of Ashra, Software and Mind Over Matter. Highly recommended to fans of progressive Berlin School.

Sylvain Lupari (February 22nd, 2013) *****

Available at SynGate Bandcamp

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