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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This electronic keyboards music album is quite artificial although it clearly has tender & charming elements. The miscellaneous sequencers are still quite melodic, but the airs are definitely less catchy than on the previous album; actually, the previous record "Electronic realizations..." is more symphonic, more sophisticated, more catchy and more accessible. The only song that sounds a bit alike is "Chateaux". There are tons of futuristic keyboards that sometimes sound a bit experimental. The sound is good, the keyboards are dynamic and restless, but the compositions do not have enough subtlety. If you find this record not melodic and catchy enough, then I do not recommend you the next records from Synergy, since they are even more experimental and cold.

Rating: 3.5 stars

Report this review (#53746)
Posted Friday, October 28, 2005 | Review Permalink
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
4 stars In some ways, Larry Fast's followup to the first Synergy album was an improvement. His own compositions are better here than on that first album. The liveliness of his songs, and the freshness (for 1976) of his synth sounds made this a favorite of mine back when it was released.

It's in his choice of cover songs where Fast lapses here. Attempting Slaughter On Tenth Avenue was a bold decision. And one that he pulled off astonishingly well. On this album, he plays Mason Williams' Classical Gas, a pseudo-classical hit single, and the not very daring choice is fairly well done, but the obviousness of the selection diminishes the track. His other cover piece is an excerpt from Dvorak's New World Symphony, a grand classic which is impossible to perform without invoking massive yawns.

As I mentioned above, Fast's own pieces, which make up the bulk of the album, are good enough to more than make up for the lackluster covers. Cybersports and (Sequence) 14 are the two that consistantly grab my attention.

Another must for synth fanatics.

Report this review (#490381)
Posted Monday, July 25, 2011 | Review Permalink
Conor Fynes
3 stars 'Sequencer' - Synergy (6/10)

Electronic pioneer Larry Fast's second album is a neoclassical exploration that verges on the ambient. Along with others such as Jean-Michel Jarre and Vangelis, Synergy was helping to define the electronic genre, using these new sounds to transport listeners to other worlds and dimensions. 'Sequencer' certainly maintains the astral sense of adventure that largely defined electronica in this period, but all the same, I find the sound a little too thin to provde a truly memorable experience.

As is evident with Fast's use of faux-harpichords and baroque scales, Synergy is very much a project rooted in classical music. Although electronic music is now in the hands of the dance- craving masses, 'Sequencer' reminds me that this once young style of music was under the direction and control of modern classical composers. The electronic palette of sounds does work for the classical compositions that Larry Fast crafts here; although lacking the same dynamic and richness that an orchestra would have, the synths make these old conventions sound new again, a nice fit for the space age. As far as the compositions on 'Sequencer' go, there are some rich ideas here, and moments where all of the synths come together to create something rather majestic. As a rule though, there is that feeling that Synergy needs to diversify itself; using only a few different synth sounds, many of these compositions end up tasting the same. Paired with a somewhat thin recording sound and the odd time where a spacey effect feels wholly out of place (such as a high pitched squeal during the cover of Mason William's acoustic piece 'Classical Gas'), I don't find myself as impressed by the work here as I am by some of the better focused electronic albums of the period.

Synergy can really be lauded for its ability to take the approach of classical music and somewhat gracefully transpose it into the world of electronics. The music is pleasant to listen to, but washes over me rather than capturing and holding my attention. With compositions a little more eventful and dynamic, and a more filling presentation, 'Sequencer' may have been a lot better.

Report this review (#566710)
Posted Saturday, November 12, 2011 | Review Permalink

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