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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

YOG SOTHOTH: Prehistoric Dawn (2012)

Updated: Apr 9, 2020

Dreams of Mystery is a delicious mixture of Pyramid Peak and Jean Michel Jarre with as background some powerful sequencing from Yog Sothoth

1 Tomb of Pacal (Chillout Mix) 8:51

2 The Mountains of Madness 5:11

3 Tribute to Axess 5:07

4 Ancient Skies 5:26

5 A Peaceful Moment 5:43

6 Into Eternity 7:33

7 Belly Soundshapes 8:50

8 Spirits of Atlantis 6:11

9 Entropie 4:35

10 Genetic Sequences 7:24

11 Galactic Voyage 8:04

12 Quasar (Space Version) 5:24

Self-Release (CD-R 79:42) (V.F.)

(E-Rock, New Berlin School)

Admit that with an award for the best new artist of 2011 by the prestigious event Schallwelle EM Award, Yog Sothoth has something to arouse curiosity. And in this case, curiosity kills the ear instead of the cat. Michael Wilkes' musical project, Yog Sothoth has from his mythical name all the energy of a parallel universe in continual anarchy. A close friend of Axel Stupplich, his music, at the very least on PREHISTORIC DAWN, caresses no influences of him, if only a discreet one for the New Berlin School style. More influenced by Jean-Michel Jarre and Kraftwerk, as well as the synth-pop movement of the 90's, the Cologne-based musician unleashes his creative enthusiasm on a first album which rocks the universe ... and not just a little! PREHISTORIC DAWN is a first album built around 11 extremely powerful tracks where heavy and hammering techno, up-tempo, acid-beat, rock and electronic punk are distant cousins of synth-pop and Berlin School.

A delicate morphic veil ambered with fragile wandering chords opens Rise of Cthulhu. This brief atmospheric episode will be the only one of this album which discolors the walls and lifts the slats from the floor with a first heavy rhythm which rolls at high speed. The sequences and percussions are stamping by hyper-jerky movements and bubbling with a heavy bass line of which the hectic chords shape a lively and furious rhythm that a distant morphic wave envelops in a waltzing veil. These harmonic elements of an EM à la Berlin School style are the challenged witnesses and the innocent pretexts for 80 minutes of stormy music that burns both the feet and the ears. Ready for Take-Off infiltrates these ears with a heavy funky approach. The rhythm is detached to sink into a powerful dance-music movement with a pulsating beat where angelic voices and vocoders robotize an approach silky coated in solid technoïd orchestrations. Dreams of Mystery takes on the essences of Depeche Mode and New Order with a frenetic tempo where sequences with alternating strikes split a rhythm always enveloped by synths with vocal lines and threads of morphic dances. The more we move into PREHISTORIC DAWN, the more our eardrums vibrate by furious rhythms. After a silky intro, Gates of Ishtar bursts into an extremely heavy and powerfully hyperactive rhythm. A hellish tempo that shakes our head and in which we perceive a clear influence of Jean-Michel Jarre and Kraftwerk. More melodious with its synth sails fill of Afghan aromas, Flights in Space is like an anemic movement inserted between the demonic and fiery Legend of Lemuria, whose frantic rhythm disarticulates our feet, and Gates of Ishtar.

Head in asphalt frost, we continue the adventure of heavy and pulsating rhythms on the techno cyborg of Cosmic Movements where the minimalist rhythm turns into a fiery cosmic rock. The mutation is extremely successful, and the electronic envelope is also very harmonic. Once again, the references with the universe of the French musician abound. Twilight Moves is the closest track to New Berlin School style with a good intro where circular chords trace a delicate spiral under the rattling clicks of cymbals and dense foggy veils. The rhythm develops slowly to deviate towards a more robotic structure which beats a steady techno under jerky synth strata and a heavy effusion of electronic guitar, in particular towards the final. Well sat on its 11:30 minutes, Lost Paradise of Nan Madol offers a changeable structure full of subtleties. With a subdivided flow, the rhythm is heavy and catchy. The harmonies are woven by a discreet piano line which goes back and forth, as well as a keyboard which adopts its minimalist keys with melodic synths orchestrations. It's a good title that hooks instantly. While our ears are still buzzing, Beyond the Horizon kills any redemptive approach with a super heavy rhythm whose jerky waltzes release acid chords which discord under an intense avalanche of wild pulsations and of corrosive synth strata. And if you thought you could hold on; this tempo broke out even more at the halfway point with a heavy and anarchic intrusion into acid and psychotronic jazz. It hurts the eardrums! Despite its dark and bizarre rhythm, the title-track tumbles with a form of lightness, testifying to the heaviness and powerful rhythmic explosions of PREHISTORIC DAWN which retains its harmonic bipolarity at all times.

I was curious to discover this Oscar winner from the Schallwelle evening, and my old crumbling ears took a solid hit. If you like frenzied and powerful rhythms jostling in electronic approaches influenced by the king of French Techno and the German robot's quartet, you will discover a new passion for Yog Sothoth and his PREHISTORIC DAWN. For my part, I have to cover my floors and repaint my walls ... Ah yes, I have planned a visit to the otolaryngologist!

Sylvain Lupari (October 13th, 2012) ***½**

Available at Cue Records & Groove NL

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