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CD/DVD Releases: More Musea Music For August

Posted on Saturday, September 20 @ 16:00:00 UTC by nightowl

Musea Records has on offer several progressive rock and one jazz release, starting with Astrovoyager - ElectrOpera - 3 Convolutions - Astrovoyager, also known as Philippe Fagnoni, is always searching for new musical and sonic sensations. Coming from Metz, the French keyboards player endeavors to compose, in a very personal style, original themes between soundtracks and relaxation music. His art relates as much to the great masters of the genre like Vangelis or Jean-Michel Jarre, as to the most renowned soundtracks composers, such as Hans Zimmer, Eric Serra...

Astrovoyager uses synthesizers and electronic keyboards to develop music mixing electronic and cosmic tracks with symphonic layers. To avoid the traps of common electronic music, he develops real melodies, alternating dreamlike climates and chiseled rhythmic patterns. Published on the Dreaming label, the second opus Temporal Gravitation² (2006) places the listener at the center of deep and enchanting pads, mixing delicate synthetic harmonies and dynamic rhythms. These fifteen instrumental compositions succeed in removing any material cares from the listener, inviting him to an exciting spatial and musical trip to the center of the Temporal Gravitation field for close to 45 minutes. A story told in music that each of us has to interpret. One could sometimes think of the universe of The Universal Migrator Part One - The Dream Sequencer (Ayreon), and that says it all! Departure is imminent. Astrovoyager is ready. What about you?

Astrovoyager's imaginary universe offers timeless and fascinating melodies. After the trip into the heart ofTemporal Gravitation² (2006), the Space Traveller is now inviting you to another journey into a singular universe. Philippe Fagnoni, an atypical musician and an innovative artist, is launching his new multimedia rendezvous, this time around a Symphotronic Lunation. Like a sound-painter, he alternates dreamlike atmospheres and chiselled, sometimes electronic rhythmic patterns, with symphonic layers. Notably, his synthesizers and electronic keyboards are now mingled with the sounds of a real orchestra: the perfect cocktail to create his own musical mark, combining richness with simplicity. A musical short film, directed by Eric Parisi, photographed by Bruce Pierson and art-designed by Stéphane Monbel, has been created to coincide with the music. It is a journey to listen to and watch, a reverie to lapse into: an invitation to unwind your real self anew.

ElectrOpera takes us to a new level of sound exploration and Astrovoyager propels the experience further into the unexpected. A real electro-acoustic opera in four acts where the baroque rubs shoulders with the abstract. In 2012, discover ElectrOpera - 01 - Pulsations ... Astrovoyager delivers a multimedia project opening up to new musical horizons while remaining faithful to what has been its strength: a really big sound, now completed with cutting-edge visual choreography. In other words, a musically ground-breaking album, the work of the maturity.

And for 2014, ElectroOpera - 3 Convolutions.

Three Winters - Chroma - Three Winters' highly anticipated debut album has already made splashes in Europe. This is monumental, striking stuff: Dark electronica taking pages out of the books of both John Carpenter's 80's horror soundtracks, 70's Tangerine Dream, a bit of Zombi and even some of Norway's own Röyksopp. This is guaranteed infectious stuff. Gorgeously produced, with layers and layers of analog synths and drum machines, by Wobbler/Tusmørke's Lars Fredrik Frøislie.

And a pair of reissues by way of White Willow expanded reissues, Sacrament (Expanded Edition) and Ex Tenebris (Expanded Edition). White Willow, a band that stems from the famous Scandinavian School, stands for one of the most essential initiators of the trend, and the leader of its most folk-influenced side. The first album Ignis Fatuus (1994) collects pieces that were recorded over a long period of time, featuring an evolving personnel. No less than nineteen musicians and an astounding amount of instruments are to be heard there! The album includes consequently a great variety of sounds, staying in the very melodic Progressive rock field, with a sometimes quite baroque connotation, reminding of Gryphon's music. Flute, Mellotron or very classical female vocals parts increase the sophisticated and precious nature of this absolutely original music.

The second album Ex-Tenebris (1998) proves to be more consistent, while reinforcing the dark side that was already perceptible in the first album. Also noteworthy was the arrival of Mattias Olsson, former drummer of Anglagard: a certain pledge of quality!

Sacrament (2000) surely is the album that brought recognition to the band, showing still more maturity and attractiveness. The project manager Jacob Holm-Lupo had therefore to hit hard to achieve his fourth opus Storm Season (2004). Still published by the US label The Laser's Edge, this new album features the fragile and ethereal voice of Silvia Erichsen, close to that of Petronella Nettermalm (Paatos). The listener immerses within the typical misty and frosty atmospheres of large snowy expanses. No doubt that he (or she) won't get out unscathed from them!

After a five years hiatus, White Willow comes back to claim its throne! And the Norwegian band has all needed to do so, with a sixth opus named Terminal Twilight (2011). That one is said to be as symphonic as Sacrament, as dark as Storm Season, and as pastoral as the first albums... With an experimental side added for good measure. That must be quite something! Let's not forget that, after having been the vehicle for Jacob Holm-Lupo alone, White Willow looks even more like a who's who of the Scandinavian School (and beyond): the band now includes drummer Mattias Olsson, Lars Fredrik Froislie (Wobbler), Ketil Einarsen (Jaga Jazzist) and singer Sylvia Erichsen. Not ever to mention the guest-appearances by Tim Bowness (No-Man), David Lundberg (Gosta Berlings Saga) and Michael S. Judge (The Nerve Institute). Needless to say more, really...

Ex Tenebris (Expanded Edition) - remastered, revamped reissue of the long OOP sophomore album from Norway's seminal proggers White Willow. This album marked the first collaboration between White Willow and Änglagård drummer Mattias Olsson. Bonus tracks include never-before-heard demos, preprod recordings and a live recording. Sacrament (Expanded Edition) - same lavish treatment as Ex Tenebris, this is the reissue of the highly acclaimed 2000 release Sacrament, that made Popmatters exclaim "rock madrigals that don't sound like Jethro Tull - who'd have thunk it!" Same deal, bonus track includes demos, live and more. Both re-issues beautifully remastered, all-analog, by Jens Petter Nilsen. Both albums also have new artwork in a beautiful digipack designed by Trine&Kim.

The jazz release this time out is Brunt'off - French Cricket. A certain youthfulness that grooves on various architectural levels, imaginary references to funk and musical and sporting British traditions (folk, rock, cricket), with a touch of English sense of humour. Both rugged and stylish, the band's sound is the result of an uncommon front line of violin and baritone saxophone, coupled with electric guitar and a keyboard rig revisiting Hammond organ and Fender Rhodes. A thoroughly successful venture in the field of tone color with cleverly chosen soloists, all nicely blended to form a true group sound. Thirty years after the first notable records by Weather Report, this album might be seen as an interesting attempt to renew an old language, using modern techniques: in this respect, the casting is perfect, and the group performance and the interaction of its musicians are very effective.

[Source: Musea]

Posted in Album Release News

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