|Entering The Dream||
|09.10.2009 CD AKH Records AKH 10091-2 new recording|
tracks on this album are newly recorded versions of a selection from
REMY's debut abum "Exhibition
originally released in 1999 as limited double cd-r on AKH Records.
Composed, performed and produced by Remy Stroomer.
Recorded between January 1st and August 28th 2009 at the AKH Studio IJmuiden.
Mastered by Wouter Bessels, September 1-19, 2009. Thanks to Vronica Falkmann.
Artwork: Ewout Koek.
Dedicated to CMS, WS and GPR.
Born in 1979, Remy
Stroomer is a relative newcomer to the EM scene releasing his first
CD in 1999 at the age of 20, during his first year of studies at the
Royal Conservatory in The Hague (The Netherlands). So you might say
his realm of influence during his formative years falls outside of the
Berlin School and first wave of Euro EM. Nonetheless, his music has
been likened to Klaus Schulze, a somewhat valid comparison, yet upon
listening the creative impulses definitely come from a different era
featuring far more propulsive energy. His first release was a LTD ED
CD-R entitled EXHIBITION OF DREAMS, a Dbl CD-R, recorded over two years
previous to it release which sold out rather quickly. Jump forward ten
years and a handful of albums and we get to the CDs at hand.
Archie Patterson / Eurock
Remy Stroomers 1999 debut album Exhibition of Dreams receives special treatment for its 10th anniversary in the form of multiple reissued versions, including: 1) a 24-bit remastered version of the original 2-CD release from 1999; 2) a limited CDR of never before released tracks from 1997-1999; and 3) a CD of newly interpreted versions of a selection of the original tracks. This review is for EoD, the newly interpreted single CD based on the original, with which Im not familiar. A soft, brisk little sequence starts Entering the Dream very nicely, as a slower, meandering synth plays over the top of it. Track two is in a similar style but with a faster pace, appropriately entitled Velocity. As was typical of his earlier releases, Remy finds a hypnotic, sequencer-infused groove and rides it out to the end, with occasional key changes to mix it up a little. This one builds slowly, with warm pads and a bit of drums rounding out the sound. Lunascape takes things down several notches, a very relaxed, soothing piece. Drums bring the energy up a bit near the end but it remains low key. The subdued atmosphere continues on Silent Conversations, another cool, mellow mood piece. The 23-minute closer Mirage chooses a comfortable middle ground, an unassuming yet sublime track to bring things to a leisurely, enjoyable close, albeit with a bit of a dramatic kick at the end. I cant say how it stacks up to the original, but its a fine album in its own right. Highly recommended.
Phil Derby / Electroambient Space
Those who know me and who read me on Guts of Darkness know in which point I loathe rereleases of these uncountable boxed-sets which exploit the same theme without adding anything really concrete to the initial musical project. I love Remy, as well as his music which tergiversates constantly in the analog/digital fusion era of Klaus Schulze. If the period of Inter*Face, Dreams, En=Trance, Miditerranean Pads and even In Blue fed abundantly your ears, the trilogy of Exhibition of Dreams will manure them even more. Because it is well and truly there that Dutch synthesist music is situated. Melodious variations on dream and its meanders nightlife theme, its at the end of 1999 that appeared the very first edition of EoD. Initially recorded on Mini-Disc and without overdubs, EoD saw the day on a very limited edition. The impact was rather significant for those who discovered Remys sound universe, starting a passion for fans that saw in Remy a Schulze disciple. A more poetic Klaus Schulze who respected his composition frames far from the improvised sessions of the German Master. Ten years later, Remys label (AKH Record) decides to emphasize the release of this album which became out of print too quickly. In last November, a single cd recuting a selection of Remy was release. Two months later, the total! A triple boxed-set including the 1st edition, remastered with the technology of nowadays recording, and a bonus cd in including 6 musical pieces wrote during that same area which, with an incredible musical precision, exploits the unexplained labyrinths and vagaries of dreams.
Such a slide in a night which will be shaken by dreams to random divinations, Into the Dream brings us in a soft musical universe with hesitating bass chords, encircled by fine arpeggios ready to fly in a night of thousand torments. Those who, like me, tasted the summary work will find the soft poetic lines of Entering the Dream with the hesitating approach of the slumber dance. A rhythm constantly held by a synth to spectral breaths and a keyboard with keys situated between an acoustic guitar and a harpsichord to crystal clear and pinched notes. The percussions fall, without ever smashing anything. A little as not to disturb the sleep tranquility, while the synth dresses its most beautiful oniric approaches, before moving us with this melody so for a long time buried in the lightness of the sleep which introduces this long night of dreams. Mirage attacks the night with more vigor. A long title to progressive rhythms, locked into a sphere of night-schizophrenia. On the other hand, this version is more ethereal and poetic than the one on the special edition, freeing a suave perfume of soft night bird madness. Lost Forces (Velocity) follows the rhythmic tangent which develops since Into the Dream. Very similar to Mirage, the pace is however more fervent and circulates nervously in a ghostly universe, shaped by a subtle line of bass to nail-biting pulsations and a synth to nightmarish waves. Luna (Lunascape) calms down the play with magnificent sequential spiral which swirls lasciviously, creating an effect of hypnosis, under a synth filled of a spawn of strata as disquiet as lyrical and where the rhythm beats slightly, as an ode to the moon and its secrets. Distant xylophone arpeggios from out of the nowhere, introduce The Fields of Infinity that hiccups under rolling percussions. Percussions become metallic and slamming which always follow the sequential xylophone approach that fade with the arrival of an acoustic guitar to fine harmonious chords. Obsessed that we are, we have difficulty in noticing this adorable fusion of chords of a divinely charming synth which oscillates slowly behind this harmonious duality which plunges towards a fervent finale where we regret bitterly the short length of this title.
Unidentified Dreaming Objects is a long epic track that breathes of this approach night bird which is the premise of EoD and of which we perceive all the sequential approach which lies in it. A long title which seems to be a summary of the cd 1, but with a more poetic approach with notes of acoustic guitars which measure to morphic synthesized strata, or still of piano spawning under the influence of a synth to somber rotary waves. The rhythm clings to this sequence to stealthily chords, shaping to a fine line of bass which seems to go out of nocturnal oblivion. It goes and strikes where it needs, leaving all the room to captivating mellotron strata, to salvos of synth tinted of symphonic waves flooded in soporific choruses and its wonderful oniric chords of guitar and solitary piano. Very different from Silent Conversations, Silent Voices is a marvel of solicitude and solitude which blooms beneath a soft piano of which notes embrace notes of a crystalline keyboard, where discreet percussions become the witnesses of this strange harmony of a duality between softness and disturbing dream. A superb track that bursts as much the soul as the lachrymal glands, of which reminiscences drag far beyond the uncoordinated rhythms of Out of the Dream.
If you already own EoD, know that the cd offered in bonus with this new edition is everything a find. Some very beautiful Remy who navigates comfortably any seas, as serene as eventful. Metroid starts this collector's item with fine flutes of blowpipes to sharp breaths of which the echo is shaping in a synth to circular and hesitating waves. Waves which float, as leaves falling from tree, among xylophone keys to nervous striking to which couple tam-tam percussions that strengthening a cadence of which the agitation soaks in a hybrid statism rhythmic. The structure becomes warmer with a synth of which fluty strata become entangled with symphonic breaths on a warm bass line which nuances subtly Metroid rhythmic envelope. Darker, poetic and enigmatic, Silent Voices Part II progresses to weak stealthily on a structure more amber than her big sister. A sweet reverie on a much sharpened synth and oniric tinkled sparkling. Strata to dense orchestrations which cogitate under loud striking notes of pianos, Waiting for Dusk takes us in a night of tormented dreams with strikes of piano which cry under fanciful violins, before taking a tangent where dream recedes nightmare in a sound sphere filled with fluty mellotrons and xylophone keys on a tormented structure. A great musical drama! After a finality where the duality of harmonies makes more complex The Fields of Infinity, The Cave plunges us into an atonal atmosphere with an intriguing approach. The atmosphere is biting and soaks into a world of ether where the madness nightlife watches for us in every heterogeneous tone. A strange title which looks for comfort among lost spirits. The Storm concludes this beautiful bonus cd with a long minimalism procession where the intensity is deploying with nuance, respecting the premises of Schulzes works, in harmonies which is the reflection of the duality between the dream and the nightmarish approach that is Exhibition of Dreams.
As for me, Exhibition
of Dreams is a magnificent musical piece of anthology. The kind of work
which marks time and which will leave all of its traces for coming years.
The sound, the compositions, the approach sometimes dramatic sometimes
melodious on structures at once minimalism and uncoordinated, make of
this work a musical monument which explains all beauties and subtleties
of the EM art.
Sylvain Lupari / Guts Of Darkness, Planet Origo
musical universe of Remy is between Schulzian boldnesss and Indra
romanticism. An exhilarating music, tinted of a strange melancholy which
recalls the old French films, as well as the somber postwar art. Initially
realized in 1999, as a double cd, Exhibition of Dreams is the very first
Remy musical essay. Out of print since a long time, AKH Records decided
to celebrate this 10th anniversary with the publication of a single cd,(where
Remy carefully chose to rework 5 titles), a complete remasterised version
and a special edition including this remasterised version with a cd-r
of the leftovers of this recording session. These last 2 items will see
the day early in January 2010. So, in the waiting of those releases, Ill
talk about these 5 tracks selection that made EoD. The result is a pleasant
listening hour which shows us all the musical spheres of the Dutch synthesist.
A soft mellotron to fluty breaths waltz in suspension straight from Entering the Dreams opening. Already we seize the strangely romantic atmosphere which will ensue from this selection whom is EoD. A melodious opening, imprint of nostalgia, which flows on a harmonious sequential approach of which loops spread out under the delicate pulsations of a discreet bass. Between calm and tearing, the synth goes of pleasant ethereal approaches, as a lonely guitar which cries out its night-solitude. In middle-course, the sequence gets loose and borrows a more limpid sonority under a thunder of percussions of which the rolling, as well as the howling solo of synth, bring a determinedly more rock touch to Entering the Dream who continues to roam between hybrid rhythms, under hard-hitting drum strikes. Velocity carries well its title with his fast and sharp sequential opening. A minimalism approach which bubbles under great violin strata which hatch an ultra pace structure. Throughout its11 minutes, Velocity offers an oppressing rhythm, sometimes supported by percussions, sometimes by a wave-like bass structure. A stationary rhythm which gives a strange impression of being breathless, with its wild cadence and his unpredictable twitching, giving the feeling that we are trapped in a nightmare. Lunascape is a small jewel of ethereal romanticism. Doors creak to be open under a bewitching sequential spiral which swirls lasciviously around fluty breathes felted choirs and magnificent synth surges of an incredible tenderness. Impulses which float in a sphere where dream shapes awakened, beneath violin bows, soft striking of a sensual electronic drum and a synth to captivating solos. A magnificent title where we can feel the clear influence of Klaus Schulze and which progresses so delicately as its hypnotic pace. With Silent Conversation we penetrate into the mysterious zone of Exhibition of Dreams. Abandoned arpeggios float in a cosmic fixity before forming a sequential structure which vacillates on a soft rhythm. A sweet charming pace which soaks into a delicious cerebral mist, where crystal clear keys of a solitary keyboard are molding to old soundtracks so dark and so melancholic, that percussions and skin-tight bass line flood with a more punctuated rhythm. If the Schulzian influence perfumes EoD almost everywhere, it is on Mirage that she is made the most present. Without a shadow of doubt la pièce de résistance of EoD, Mirage is a long complex and finely worked title that begins with a sequence which hems such a prismatic cascade of which the echo is getting threatening and the tempo bubbling behind the striking of an incisive sequencer. Chords of acoustic guitar and a mellotron to veils as much fluty as violined amplify more the Schulze influence (In Blue and Dreams), on a minimalism rhythm of which the approach progresses harmoniously well and permutes with subtlety to embrace several forms throughout this title in the unexpected musical outcomes. The weightiness of the drum striking, a synth at once sober and audacious due to its tortuous solos and a variety of rhythms which border as much the atonality as furious paces, make of Mirage a sonorous wonder which ends with a magnificent synthesized surge, harpooned by hard-hitting strikes and wrapped with stifling strata, plunging us into a sound universe where paranoia and schizophrenia are the meeting point of a surprising sound mirage.
Sadly, I never had the chance to hear the original release of Exhibition of Dreams first release back in 99, on the other hand I discovered Remys music with the very inspired and inspiring Different Shades of Dust, released in 2004. I discovered an audacious artist, with a very progressive artistic approach, which is exactly the case with this special edition of Exhibition of Dreams, who contains pure marvels of a Berlin School EM style. Titles as Entering the Dream, Lunascapes and the very audacious Mirage are inescapable and reveal one of the big EM album of 2009.
2010. Sylvain Lupari / Guts Of Darkness, Planet Origo
For the tenth anniversary
of his first album, Dutch synthesizer musician Remy Stroomer came up
with something special. He decided to release a remastered selection
of tracks from "Exhibition of Dreams", as well as some newly
recorded versions of the original 1999 material. This latter version
is what I am going to review here. "Entering the Dream" begins
with lilting melodic sequences, joined my more gorgeous electronic pulsations.
The bass throb has something of a Schulze quality to it - a lovely,
complex pattern. Make no mistake, this is high quality melodic EM, with
great key changes that just get under your skin. The original tracks
were recorded in one take and this can easily be heard in the flowing,
organic nature of this composition. The second half of this track is
occupied by the same melodic theme, this time joined by insistent drum
rhythm and wonderful cosmic analog solo. "Velocity" starts
with an even more urgent and driving sequence. However, the melodic
content is still fairly strong here, this time made up of complex symphonic
themes. The track falls squarely into Klaus Schulze's late 1980's style,
but there are differences. First, the drum rhythm Remy uses is much
heavier than what Klaus used back then. Secondly, whereas Klaus relied
very much on sampled textures at that time, Remy tends to use purely
synthetic textures more freely. The unique track of the bunch is certainly
"Lunascape". It relies on a minimalistic four-note pattern,
around which Remy builds a melancholic soundscape full of Classical
strings, Mellotron voices and floating pads. In the second half, a slow
rhythm compliments the wonderfully grim and melancholic sound of this
composition. The rhythm then quickens its pace as the track becomes
even slightly danceable, without losing its romantic / melancholic flair.
A solo cries on top and no sequences are heard, apart from the said
four-note motif. "Silent Conversations" has an airy, misty
aura about it. There are multiple pulsations, but the fog envelops everything,
the melodies sounding as if coming from a long-forgotten dream. Shadowy,
dark and melancholic - that's what this track really is. A heavy rhythm
is introduced but the melodic content is still the main attraction of
this composition. It's a tune you can almost whistle to, much more accessible
that what Remy has been known for during the last several years. The
album comes to a close with a 20+ minute "Mirage". Bell-like
sequences open this piece of music in typical Remy fashion. Talking
about comparisons, this is probably the most Schulze-sounding track
of the entire album. All the key changes, the insistent nature of the
composition, sharp, computer-aided sequencing, everything reminds on
the good old days (I am talking 1986 - 1991 here) of the Master. However,
Remy brings in a good dose of individual character to the already familiar
style of music. Wonderful, fast soloing presages the coming of a quiet
section with almost guitar-like melancholic notes ("In Blue",
anyone?). The stiff, dense sequences then return in all their glory,
to be joined by melancholic 'tron strings. A heavy hip-hop style rhythm
enters, while the melodic content grows in intensity, with new melodies
added and old ones gaining volume. A key change follows, as a liquid
solo is heard. This is quite some ecstatic EM, stone cold and yet emotional,
mechanical and yet easy-going, aggressive and yet soft, sterile and
yet organic, impenetrable and yet infiltrating your very soul. A complete
change of mood follows, with Mellotron dominating and the track losing
much of it oomph and yet with a feeling of menace still lurking inside.
An aggressive Moog solo echoes into the distance as the drums go overcharge.
A wonderful way to finish this great album, I would add.
Artemi Pugachov / Encyclopedia of Electronic Music
Tien jaar geleden tipte Bob van de helaas ter ziele gegane Amsterdamse platenzaak Boudisque mij dat ik dit eens diende te beluisteren: het was de dubbele CD-R Exhibition Of Dreams van de uit Haarlem afkomstige Remy Stroomer. Ik was prettig verrast door de muziek; het zat prima in elkaar, was goed gespeeld en klonk geluidstechnisch (zeker qua gebruikte klanken) lichtjes als de sound die Klaus Schulze in de jaren '90 produceerde. Dit talent verdiende naar mijn mening een goede toekomst. Die is er gekomen want tegenwoordig is Remy een van de meest gewaardeerde Nederlandse elektronische musici. In het kader van het tienjarig jubileum van "EoD" heeft hij twee dingen gedaan: het remasteren van het originele album (deze komt later dit jaar uit) en het opnieuw opnemen van vijf van de acht tracks. Ik was benieuwd wat Remy met zijn huidige middelen met de muziek heeft gedaan. Wel, het is erg sterk geworden. Door deze aanpak heeft de muziek vooral aan frisheid en scherpte gewonnen en ook is de link naar Schulze bijna verdwenen. Remy heeft het in zich om melodieuze elektronische muziek te combineren met typische Berliner Schule maar ook met meer moderne en experimentele klanken. Dat was op EoD al hoorbaar. Entering The Dream opent de CD met een lekkere sequence, daar overheen een gave solo en ondersteunde ritmes. Één van de grootste kwaliteiten van Remy is het neerleggen van heerlijke sequences en arpeggio's Velocity is daar een goed voorbeeld van maar het hoogtepunt op dat gebied is Lunascape (oorspronkelijk La Luna geheten). Dit stuk kent een heerlijke sequence, Mellotronkoren en een knappe solo. De ritmische aanpak is iets moderner dan het originele stuk maar past er goed bij. De eerste helft van Silent Conversations gaat meer richting de Berliner Schule terwijl het tweede deel iets Vangelis/Frank van Bogaert-achtigs heeft. Ook Mirage kent weer zo'n heerlijk voortstuwend loopje en een bijna progressieve ontwikkeling. Ik kan Remy niets anders zeggen dat "Petje af" voor wat hij op deze CD heeft gedaan: het klinkt bijna als nieuw album maar de sfeer van de originele muziek is niet verloren gegaan. Knap gedaan.
Paul Rijkens / iO-Pages #90
As Remy explains, "EoD" is the first part of the 10th anniversary of his debut release "Exhibition of Dreams", containing newly recorded versions of a selection of the original tracks from 1999 album.
EoD comprises five long tracks, making up over 70 minutes of fine electronics with many nice breaks and smooth solos to keep the attention of the listener.
In its own way, the sonic content with repetitive structures presented here recalls a classic quality, which is due to the chosen warm sound pads, varied drums/ percussion and evocative sequencer patterns. Combined with sweeping melodic lines, it lends the overall outcome a relaxed, moody and even a certain vintage feel.
It already makes me look forward to the remastered and expanded edition of Exhibition of Dreams, due for December 2009.
Bert Strolenberg / Sonic Immersion