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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

TRIPLE S: Poles (2011)

Updated: Apr 10, 2021

A world of ice beneath a guitar on fire, Poles is a beautiful EM story which rides a more rock side

1 Ninety Degrees South 11:10

2 Erebus Ice Tongue Part One 7:11

3 Erebus Ice Tongue Part Two 6:23

4 Shackleton Ice Shelf 5:57

5 Mount Ellsworth 10:19

6 Pole of Inaccessibility 16:33

7 Aurora Borealis 7:13

8 Arctic Finale 7:06

(DDL 71:52) (V.F.)

(E-Rock, New Berlin School)

Hearing the cold moans and roars out and to feel its bite, its erosion and its explosions. This is all the atmospheric setting which surrounds this first album of Triple S. Consisted of Erik Seifert, Max Schiefele and Josef Steinbuechel; Triple S concocted a concept album which describes the experiments and the wild lives on both poles and its extremes coldness with a music which is not at all the equal of the subject of their thesis. POLES is a good album where the electronic rock caresses the morphic sweetness of atmospheric approaches with a Maxxess in great shape who frees wildly his strings to sculptures riffs and solos which invade structures as oneiric as quietly stormy.

A Siberian wind engraves frosty dunes, propelling particles of ices among solitary arpeggios which have the fragility of glass. Floating and melancholic, the intro of Ninety Degrees South sweeps the horizon with good synth which are resting on the ice floes of solitude expiring hatched panting which get lost in the crystal-clear echo of the arpeggios of ice. Maxxess' guitar tears up this wintry tranquility. His scattered solos and echoing riffs light up fine percussions and awaken keys from lunar keyboards. Slowly the rhythm is rising with a delicate morphic approach, switching between a floating tempo and its more percussive momentums just like the 7 other titles which dance and waltz on POLES. It's a soft but firm rhythm which oscillates between a strong progressive rock and a cosmic rock where distorted riffs, lascivious solos and strong percussions with tones of metallic gases structure an eclectic sound fauna. After an intro where the crackling of ices converges towards twinkling tones, Erebus Ice Tongue Part I stumbles over a delicious electronic rock approach à la Code Indigo. A merger of acoustic and electric guitars floods our ears with a mixture of notes, riffs and solos as heavy as ethereal which interlace on a nest of twinkling chords. Sometimes heavy, sometimes fluid and slightly jerky, the rhythm remains catchy. Harpooned by slamming percussions à la Jean-Michel Jarre and flavoured of delicious hesitating and melodious chords à la Tangerine Dream, era Underwater Sunlight, it continues its progression towards Erebus Ice Tongue Part II with soft angelic vocals, before looping the loop with a finale with ambiances as much richer and intense as the introduction. The intro of Shackleton Ice Shelf jumps with the noise of the icebergs which crash violently on ice floes, offering a show of lunar desolation returned with aptly by the laments of a forsaken guitar. Max Schiefele's solos are bursting out of emotivity and float with the violence of the winds, accompany by morphic synth layers. It’s of a very poetic icy serenity.

Fine percussions draw the delicate chipped rhythm of Mount Ellsworth which is surrounded by a very electronic aura. Floating into Software and Pyramid Peak's spheres, the rhythm is finely jerky and decorated by electronic streaks which overhang the knocks of felted percussions before folding the loin over the harmonious solos of Maxxess. Afterward the rhythmic approach becomes more complex, lining up melodic phases which tire oneself out on others jerkier where synths and choirs compete with a more accommodating guitar. Built a little on the same principle, Pole of Inaccessibility offers a beautiful intro slightly morphic where notes of acoustic guitar glide over some weak pulsations. Streaks as much ghostly than iridescent shake the atmosphere while heaviness settles down, paving the way to a progressive rhythm which becomes predominant around the 6th minute mark. Heavy and slow, the rhythm is lascivious and skimmed over by beautiful strata of a spectral synth which copulate with solos of a morphic guitar. A guitar which becomes more aggressive by freeing riffs which roll in loops, accelerating a pace of which the rhythm is skilfully surrounded by layers and choirs of a hypnotic synth. More atmospheric and more claustrophobic, Aurora Borealis is unfolding as being in a state of weightlessness. The guitar floats like the waltzing strata of Erik Wollo, forging loops which get astray in riffs and heterogeneous tones. Howler winds open the angelic heavens of Arctic Finale which shines with its superb celestial intro. Torn between its powerful impromptu rhythms and its ethereal ambiances, Arctic Finale is divided by its heavy percussions which fall and its twinkling arpeggios which flutter on a beautiful circular movement. But the heavy and slow rhythm takes the lead. For a few seconds it rages of its symphonic drums to then find shelter in the calm of the morphic strata of an oneiric guitar and the crystalline arpeggios of a solitary keyboard to still bend under the knocks of the big drums and embrace a philharmonic phase just before ending in the winds of the cold ice. This is a wonderful track!

A world of ice beneath a guitar of fire, POLES is a good EM album which rides serenely a more rock approach. The presence of Maxxess and his guitars bury his two friends that I find rather discreet, but the result is not less good; it stays a pretty good album. Except that I would have like that the synths and eclectic ambiances of Erik Seifert emerge as much as the guitars and riffs of Maxxess. I have the feeling to hear a Maxxess album written by Erik Seifert, because we cannot deny the poetic touch here of the German synthesist that we hear and feel all along Poles, an album which will please both fans of Mike Oldfield (The Song of Distant Earth), Code Indigo, Erik Wollo and Pyramid Peak. A good bunch of styles, we have to admit...

Sylvain Lupari (January 25th, 2012) ***½**

Available at Seifert & Steinbuechel Bandcamp

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