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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

WOLFGANG NACHAHMER: Nachtwache (2021)

9 minimalist structures where lies a rhythmic diversity tied up in catchy rhythms that have never suffered from a lack of imagination

1 Der geheime Garten 9:43

2 Impuls 5:02

3 Der alte Weg 4:54

4 Belomantie 3:03

5 Der Tag des Erwachens 4:25

6 OB-session 9:50

7 Über den Zaun 6:20

8 Nachtwache 4:11

9 Der Korridor 14:45

(CD-r/DDL 62:18) (V.F.)

(Minimalist, Berlin School)

A more piercing shadow emerges from the introductory woosshh of Der geheime Garten. My keen ears already perceive a ghostly rhythmic structure where can be heard rattling with metallic clanking. At the same time, a nice musicality envelops the first two minutes with floating layers and cerulean mists. The sequencer then traces a Berlin School style movement with keys that take long strides in an ascending structure. Minimalist, the rhythm serves as the basis for good synth solos with a tinge of jazz in an underground nightclub. Still keeping the anonymity and having in mind that Wolfgang Nachahmer would be a talented musician, he is scattering on the soft ground of the music some half-arpeggios which flicker like candles seen from above. Other sound effects are added, deepening a musical field that is enriched by a keyboardist this time who weaves good synth solos, sober as piercing. A minimalist structure with a rhythmic drive and a good harmonic vision caught in a swirl of mists and daring sound effects, Der geheime Garten is a nice introduction to the album NACHTWACHE. For his 6th album on SynGate, this artist still requiring his anonymity offers an album easier to tame than the disappointing Triptychon. He is a night watchman making his rounds in a sound museum where the 9 exhibitions of WN are objects of curiosity for the ears. Curiosity for 9 minimalist structures where lies a rhythmic diversity tied up in always catchy structures and where the irradiation of the melodious structures are in sufficient number to appreciate this album.

Drops of sound drip in the opening of Impuls. Already, the flow seems interesting with a Teutonic scent in the movement. The haze is ideal to give to this unusual beat some power, as well as a synth line and its invasive melodic plan. A track without rhythmic life but with a beautiful sound intensity, the ticking and its shifted effect remains all the same very seductive. Der alte Weg comes to us with a secret rhythm, nevertheless quite resonant, with sequence basses and opal arpeggios dancing in their echoes. An ideal structure designed to accommodate prismatic solos and their acrobatic figures. The rhythm starts to overlap in the heart of its design, adding an even more attractive element in this structure that has amassed all it can in its objective; to charm the listener. It's a success! Belomantie was the first track to make me raise the eyebrows. The presence of an acoustic guitar and its pure ballad vision is quite unexpected in an album of EM. A particularly good ballad surrounded by sharp electronic effects which do not distort its acoustic vision. Der Tag des Erwachens makes in the weird with its quilt of synth pads that fit in a slowly oscillating block. This new minimalist framework receives the prismatic whispers and hums from a synth and its ever-going ululations as the percussions frolic in the background. There are guitar chords that add dramatic intensity to this track that has become an intense ambient mishmash whose rhythm settles in its last third with an intensity that we felt coming from the beginning. It reminds me of Michael Rother. I found that ingenious, except that the risk that Der Tag des Erwachens might be annoying for some is quite present.

We light the switch! The machine settles and floods our listening room with a heavy coat of resonances. Cosmic breaths, like psychedelic effects and overlapping layers flood OB-session. Sequences draw this imperfect circle of a Berlin School which finds its nobility in the majestic misty breaths of the Mellotron. Exploratory title whose excuse is the Berliner movement of the bass line-pulsations, OB-session becomes a sound canvas for the not necessarily audacious experimentations of the synth and its effects. But indeed, it gets OB-sessional! Über den Zaun is simply brilliant in its harmonic simplicity. A catchy track camped in a pool of sound effects and surrounded by a creative synth, it quietly develops into a dance music structure, even a good morphic techno for sated zombies. The title-track propagates a corrosive value equivalent to OB-session reverbs. Rhythm and melodic vision less! Der Korridor ends this NACHTWACHE with an excellent contemporary Berlin School a la E-Tiefengrund. It's more than 10 minutes of pure happiness for a music lover. Ten minutes!? Yes, because there is a big 100 seconds of black out before a cloud of reverberations and disparate tones are there to remind us how experimental and audacious Wolfgang Nachahmer's music can turn to be at times.

But not in this album, or so little. The German musician returns to the base, as in the album Synchromystik, with a creative vision well explored on rhythms sometimes soft as sometimes hard in armatures always minimalist whose insight of the musician-artist has never suffered from a lack of imagination.

Sylvain Lupari (April 9th, 2021) *****

Available at SynGate Bandcamp

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