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Hydrus Midnight In Space album cover
3.91 | 25 ratings | 6 reviews | 12% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1978

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Midnight In Space (5:18)
2. Hibernation (10:12)
3. Earth Calling Space (4:07)
4. Milky Way (6:21)
5. The 2 Planets (6:35)
6. Space Link-up (6:55)

Total Time 39:28

Releases information

LP PDU PLD.A.6096 (1978)

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HYDRUS Midnight In Space ratings distribution

(25 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(12%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (40%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

HYDRUS Midnight In Space reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by DamoXt7942
FORUM & SITE ADMIN GROUP Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams
4 stars My first listening to "Midnight In Space" gave me a sharp shock, and the fact that there's no more information about them except this album gave me a shock again.

Would like you to listen to this dreamland at ease, relaxed. You can be impressed and immersed into mellow, dreamy, hallucinogenic synthesizer waves and gentle but poignant electric piano touches. No eccentricity, no perversity ... but only a virtual safe 'n' sound river flows under you, and you can fly over the sound stream. In the first track "Midnight In Space" you can feel as if you were into brilliant meteoric streams. Synth reverberations are like explosion of stars in the dark sky. Whatever you hear, you can get so comfortable to reach an entrance of a fantasy space named HYDRUS ... in Space you cannot help weeping.

Basically, throughout this album, the core essence is an electronic synthesizer soundwave here and there ... undoubtedly ... indeed quite a few have recommended them as an electronic outfit, but please listen to the creation thoroughly in the Midnight and you can feel more and more bulkier psychedelic background in it. (And yeah, the beginning of the fourth song "Milky Way" should be a serious Space Rock we can mention!) Not only mysterious and addictive female scat voices nor artificial, inorganic synthetic sounds but also, let me emphasize, some intervals between a sound and another, can raise you over the Space. Can we consider this stuff not as simply electronic progressive album but globally as a psychedelic psychotic wake of a flood ... until the last "Space Link-up", a mixture of all their psychospace elements?

Enjoy the lingering sounds upon the calm, fresh space. And let me say, do not come back from HYDRUSPACE. :-)

Review by Rivertree
4 stars What a wonderful dreamy atmosphere is implemented here! It's almost nothing known about this project ... the members ... the origin ... everything went lost in space so to say. An album originally released as a long player on Italian PDU label, founded by famous female pop singer Mina - something like an equivalent to the OHR/Kosmische Musik label in Germany. This one should be heard when you're over a day full of hard work for example, when you're already on the way to relax. 'Midnight in Space' gives you THE rest finally. Take the chance, maybe while your partner is sitting in front of the TV, put the headphones on ... ready for an extraordinary cosmic trip!

You are listening to roundabout 40 minutes of melancholic spacey excursions, mainly based on electronics - however also provided with accentuated acoustic piano which also serves a classical touch here and there. When I'm in the right mood the meandering couple Midnight in Space and Hibernation can bring tears to my eyes - it's so lovely. Here we have a bunch of soaring and playful electronic gimmicks, perfectly applied. A heartbeat is leading somewhere in between, some ethereal female vocals are put in, subtle drum playing surprises suddenly. The album's centerpiece - a big hit concerning composition and realization.

Then Milky Way showcases some acoustic drums again - steps out of line due to a common rhythm work as such, at least partially. This probably points to the musicians' popular origin with a short jazzy dance music flirt, until mournful piano and strings take the lead again. After a while the project slips away to other planets with comfortable ambience, accompanied by a symphonic attitude and spooky voice samples. HYDRUS finally link up somewhere ... it's dark, midnight in space ... nearly forgotten up to now.

Grab it ... if you can. Dedicated to fans of top-notch spacey electronic stuff. A fantastic effort which cries for a digital re-issue ... eh, okay, time will tell.

Review by colorofmoney91
4 stars Midnight in Space is another one of those one-off Italian progressive classics from the '70s, and maintains a very "Italian" attitude of high-art and beautiful melodies that are usually attributed to groups of this nationality in the '70s.

This album cannot be compared directly to the works of Tangerine Dream or Klaus Schulze because there is a much stronger focus on slow building melody in a more serene and empty sense than the usual countless layers of perpetually buzzing synths of the aforementioned artists -- this effectively gives Hydrus a sound all their own. The dynamism on this album is also incredible, usually opting for quiet and subtle, which makes the huge electronic crescendos stand out more. But on some tracks, such as the energetic "Milky Way", the group plays with a thumbing bass line, a choir of trumpets, and smooth guitar that all makes for a fun synth-enhanced Chicago-like composition that is as bombastic and unique as it is entertaining. The bass sound on this album, by the way, is substantially low-end and clean sounding, though there are no technical displays.

Beyond being spacial-sounding electronic music, as most electronic music was in this era, there is a moderately romantic vibe to Midnight in Space, which could very well explain the naked woman on the album's cover art. There are only very small traces of any kind of jazz within this album's compositions, but the atmosphere throughout reeks of jazzy class. This is electronic music for slipping on your tux, sipping on your dry martini, and... drifting off into space?

Again, each of the tracks on this album are primarily slow and quiet, which might bore some new listeners, but more noticeable moments creep out into the moonlight after repeated engaged listening. Because of the generally subdued nature of Midnight in Space, it's very possible that it could have influenced many modern-day ambient electronic composers. Specifically songs like "The 2 Planets" sound similar to some of the more interesting Harold Budd compositions.

While I definitely wouldn't recommend this to people who have no patience for slow music, I could probably safely recommend Hydrus' only album for fellow ambient electronic fans as well as post-rock fans. Considering that this is a gem of the Italian '70s progressive music scene, huge fans of rock progressivo Italiano might enjoy this along side other Italian classics such as Franco Leprino's beautiful Integrati... Disintegrati and Claudio Rocchi's Suoni di Frontiera.

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This mystic electronic vinyl artifact from the late 1970's Italy conjures really beautiful nocturnal dreams from the aquatic cerulean of vast cosmos, which I personally felt containing a deeper meaning in its charming abstractions and thematic clues. This hour of midnight in space is introduced from fatalistic piano notes summoning electronic oscillating voices. A vortex of keyboards elevates from the synthesis, revealing wonderful emotional visions from the union of romantic piano and supporting electronics. Slowly progressing melodic theme reminded me slightly the Blade Runner's love theme from Vangelis, swimming gracefully on the ethereal tides of imagination. Bass guitar, cautious presence of drum cymbals and distant voices of lady singer are introduced among the electronic tapestries on the following sequence of hibernation. The composition structure is quite peculiar, as the flow of sounds ceases some points totally. First few minutes after the promises of the starting sequence, and continuing only after a long null void as more purist vintage synthesizer pulsing. The dreamy effects are achieved interestingly by reprising the opening themes via weirdly modulated variations, the note harmonies containing in my opinion some sort of call for awakening from the deep slumber. After another pause a very short progression with drums and guitar appear from the emptiness of unconsciousness. I felt the solution of hiding the conventional rock instrumentation band presence as rare hidden glimpses behind the electronic textures, also this short visitation is soon cleaned away by synthesizer sound projections, returning to the concept from the start of the song, allowing bass guitar and cozy keyboard lines be visited by the distant siren songs and barely present being drums and restrained touches of guitar.

Following scenery reveals our home planet orbiting among the vast gusts of solar winds, tiny technical notes being sent through radio waves to the infinity of cosmos. The signals grow as playful dancing on primitive note harmonics, and the vastness of space is presented as large formless sound presences. The fusion of these elements create a quite abstract tonal installation. Our home galaxy is then portrayed trough shimmering song with oriental melody on the synthesizers, uniting to groovy orchestrated brass-driven lounging, holding the archetypical qualities of 1970's western culture's music. This rhythmic theme emerges and disappears smoothly from the beautiful curves of larger and quite shapeless forms of electric tones. The distant small details and the grand sonic tones mingling together appeared for me as quite unique and fascinating aural innovations, allowing both solemn cosmic visions and also admiration for the musicians left unknown for me for these personal artistic achievements.

On the early Tangerine Dream reminding song for two planets I tried to pursuit further the potential allegorical meanings of the whole album. On the midnight hour at the aether of space, something sleeps in a deep dream, the slumber being molested with invitations for the awaken state, and this agent of signaling being Earth, Gaia, a Woman. The signal of this call voyages trough Milky Way, a celestial causeway noted in every culture's mythologies. The two planets, Woman and a Man woken from the sleep, search union through the call carried via the backbone of the night, cosmic winds leading to this synthesis on "Space Link-Up", concluding the album what I interpreted as the union of human love. This climax reprises the melodic themes from album's beginning with selective usage of amplified rock instruments, and also introducing the presence of male voice upon the electronic fusion sound realm. These planar states are altered on the scene, each waiting patiently their own proper time, and finally escaping to the emptiness of silence beyond the album.

It is possible these thoughts are only my own subjective fantasies, but one pleasant potential on abstract music is the possibility of being able to try to search your own interpretations from the artistic expression. It is also possible to just float on these melodically accessible and exceptionally beautiful sequences without requirements for meanings. This music is arranged to concepts with a manner which at least I have not encountered yet earlier, and caused deep satisfaction and admiration for the creators lost behind the event horizon of memory - a deterministic fate occurring for all of us, and a fact which does not need to be frightful if a solace has been found from existential contemplations of scientific, religious or philosophical nature. In my opinion the invitation for the album's cosmic mysteries are also presented wonderfully on the cover art; the geometrical trinity of logical codex set on the stellar landscape is being approached by the female character, flying gently over mathematical lines like a high jumper glides over the bar on athletic games, just as gently and arousing as the music of this divine album maneuvers upon the cosmic spheres.

This solitary album of Hydrus stands for me as a really precious and rare album full of cosmic sensuality, and also forming a codex for universe's cosmological meaning culminating in the love's union.

Review by Epignosis
3 stars Quite an intriguing title, given that our terrestrial measures of temporality lose significance outside of our planet. What's even more intriguing is the music: Vast, ethereal, and otherworldly- only lacking clear direction much of the time.

"Midnight in Space" Dreamy and at times unsettling, this piece evokes the vastness of outer space, all the while maintaining a tranquility in response to the emptiness of it. The sparkling piano indicates that there is at least some life- and hope- in the void.

"Hibernation" Pairing cold mechanical tones with a galactic siren, the introduction of the album's longest piece contains a variety of fluid passages and electronic sounds reminiscent of an arcade from the time. Eventually it settles into an unexpected and short-lived jazzy section before returning to its feminine beginning.

"Earth Calling Space" Zephyrs die down, leaving the listener with the impression of moving through a lifeless patch of the universe. Only a quirky batch of electronic tones interrupts this.

"Milky Way" Thin organ and dark lonely sounds give way to the most upbeat passage on the album, a psychedelic jam that is borderline disco.

"The 2 Planets" Initially a harsher piece, this eventually tones down into the calmest experience on the record, with soft tones and a swirling backdrop.

"Space Link-up" Waxing passages, filled with bass guitar and piano, the piece eventually wanes into further serene washes of sound, culminating in one final jazzy excursion.

Review by Progfan97402
4 stars On the same label that gave us the wonderful Electronic Mind Waves by Elektriktus (the label being PDU) comes Hydrus with Midnight in Space, apparently their sole release. I just love it when I run across such obscure but amazing electronic music like this! This album tends to have a rather calm relaxed, spacy vibe throughout. Occasionally strings, guitars, ethereal wordless female voices or piano shows up, but by large it's synths and organ. There's even a section where they try to quote the five notes to Close Encounters of the Third Kind, but it was just the first three (and apparently hiding the other two in synth chords). I'm sure they only played the first three notes as not to get in trouble with John Williams. It's hard telling who was involved in Hydrus, although these ethereal female voices sounded exactly like what I've heard on the incidental music to the 1971 movie Devil's Nightmare (which was an Italian and Belgian film), I almost wondered if that was the same lady. Don't know. Musically, nothing on Midnight in Space is aggressive or in your face, just relaxed and spacy electronic music. Well worth having and worthy of your attention.

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