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Cosmic Ground - Cosmic Ground IV CD (album) cover

COSMIC GROUND IV

Cosmic Ground

 

Progressive Electronic

3.85 | 10 ratings

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BrufordFreak
4 stars The latest Berlin-School-styled space music from Electric Orange's keyboard maestro, Dirk Jan Müller--this time with more "shorter" songs and only one long epic.

1. "Possessed" (7:38) like a soundtrack to a creepy movie scene around railroad station, tracks, and sounds. The first of Dirk's interesting sound studies--this one an industrial mélange. The entrance and stay of a horn-like organ in for the final two and a half minutes is a bit incongruous. (8/10)

2. "Stained" (11:30) a slow sequence with octave-spanning bass-line establishes itself from the opening and proceeds to slowly rise and morph over the first four minutes. At 4:30 the sequences shifts into a higher octave while the rhythm and bass line remain constant. In the seventh minute, new sounds and tension dynamics enter making this more interesting. Very Tangerine Dream-like! The more sustained notes of the arpeggiated chords in the thick of the ninth minute are very cool, but then everything quiets down as Dirk begins the process of unravelling his Berlin School weave. (8.75/10)

3. "Obscured" (7:25) pure TANGERINE DREAM! Even sounds like part of its tracks come from a 1970s TD classic (while the rolling bass line sounds like bass and rhythm guitar tracks on PINK FLOYD's "Run Like Hell" from The Wall). (8.5/10)

4. "Greasy" (12:29) opens with spacey strings synth and deep bass note to match--almost church organ-like-- changing chords every 20 seconds or so. In the fourth minute the "space organ" disappears and a cool percussive computer synth sequence establishes itself--seeming to continually "rise" for over a minute before slowly reversing, seeming to "decompose." By the end of the eighth minute we are left with just the quiet bones of the sequence. (8.5/10)

5. "Progeny" (20:21) nicely echoed and flanged groovin' sequence over and under which synth and organ washes rise and fall. Very smooth, calming, and hypnotic. (9/10)

6. "Plains" (9:02) opens with on long-held full board synth chord that slowly builds as internal components seem to rise and fall. (Or do they?) This single chord is sustained for over three minutes while very subtle elements get slight rises or falls (e.g., a single pounding piano chord in the background). When singular elements "disappear" it is amazing to suddenly hear a component that you had not picked up before. This is like an aural test! Name those sounds, instruments, and chords contribution to this melange. Fascinating! I find myself liking this super simple song/étude more and more the longer it plays. (9.5/10)

7. "Deep End" (9:57) distorted and misshapen echoes of percussive sounds. Again, a fascinating study in sound manipulations. (8.25/10)

Let's face it, folks: Herr Müller is a master at this stuff. If you're looking for a collection of masterful, pleasing Berlin School songs with excellent sound mastering and really interesting experimentations with sound, you need look no further than this album.

Four stars; a very nice addition to prog world--especially interesting for fans of Berlin School music and especially the experimentations of Tangerine Dream.

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |

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