WELLENFELD: Fusion (2005)
“Harmonious music guided by orchestral layers of melody-cutting synths”
1 Genesis 4:58
2 Matrix 6:22
3 Fusion 5:45
4 Atmosphere 5:40
5 Nordlicht 9:02
6 Hal 7:39
7 Odyssey 6:53
8 Freeze 7:31
(New Berlin School, EDM)
According to some reviewers and what one can read about Wellenfeld via Internet, this second CD would be the most tepid of his repertoire. It's thus with informed ears that I undertook its discovery. And, unless I have holes in my eardrums, I did not find anything weak on FUSION. On the contrary, my ears met an opus that is in perfect evolutionary harmony with Cosmic Waves.
Noises, electro-magnetic distortions and percussions! The flow is bouncy with curt hits and double of bass-drums responses. Sound interferences weave twisted thin lines whereas a fraction of a fuzzy melody breaks off to become a kind of riff that blends in with all this sonic fauna from which an undulating rhythm emerges in these tonal traps and rhythm woven into everything but normality. Genesis is off to a great start! A rhythm as catchy as its melody in an arsenal of noises that softens its technical side in good orchestrations, it's creativity by the square inch in a quite lively zone of electronic rock. A mixture of fragmented rhythms whose welds give a unique charm to Genesis, one of the most prized pieces of Wellenfeld's repertoire, and I understand why! A melodious piano with obsessive chords opens Matrix, which lets itself be subjugated by heavy symphonic synth layers, waltzing to the rhythm of mostly sober percussions. This symbiosis offers a melodious synthesized chorus which will hook throughout Matrix, and which has the particularity of having two refrains, or two similar movements, which intersect at regular intervals. Fine notes gravitate in a circular ambience where odd vocal fragments pierce a movement which goes in crescent to explode with a heavy rhythm. Fusion is a very lively track with a hammering beat interspersed with jerky lines of a synth that seems hesitant. Halfway between a techno for dance floor and a big synth-pop rock, the title-track is one that stirs and finds all its nobility at high volume. An undulating bass movement establishes the basis of Atmosphere. Notes dance lasciviously there until the arrival of down-tempo style percussions which bring a suave and sensual rhythm. A good track superbly covered with layers which sow beautiful melodious refrains which hook us and leave their sound imprints.
Nordlicht is a boiling track with a punchy multi-level rhythm. Ambient passages, with superb synth waltzes, cross this title which hides a discreet influence of Jean-Michel Jarre on percussions and cosmic sound effects. Well-arranged dynamite on frenetic sequences that roll in stunts. A celestial organ opens Hal which breathes on buzzing pulsations. The title floats on a synth with floating breaths and violins. The rhythm marries a well-felt drum'n'bass while a stroboscopic effect, tchicka-tchika-tchika, surrounds the music and the floating laments of the synth which encrusts a superb melodious chorus which hooks us as much as the rhythm. Sound effects and arpeggios twirling in a spiral movement invite us to Odyssey. Roaring pulsations resonate eardrums and floor slats in a heavy, slow rhythm with props to give it more speed. Always so melodious, the synths abound in abundant and harmonious streaks on deviant sequences, with rhythms interspersed with cascading movements, which relaunch the hammering beat which could liven up in a good techno evening. A long buzzing movement opens Freeze. Intermittent movement flows with an echo effect while surrounded by metallic percussions and analog sound effects. At the same time, a sequence follows this impulse to blend into a rhythm animated by sober percussions. Flooded with the slow course of violin strata and analog sound effects, Freeze progresses on a rhythm animated by a good bass line and virtual drum rolls, consolidating its hold on catchy and sassy beat.
It's nice to discover a band like Wellenfeld. Harmonious music guided by orchestral layers of melody-cutting synths. The sequences are round and juicy, initiating frenzied, hypnotic rhythms or downright dancing on sober percussions. I think that if you liked Cosmic Waves, you are going to like FUSION which is a sequel that makes more sense.
Sylvain Lupari (November 25th, 2006) ***½**
Available at MellowJet Records