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Journeyscapes by Candice Michelle
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Metamorphic Waves
By Sequential Dreams
Label: Borders Edge
A sonic adventure not to be missed!
Metamorphic Waves is the latest album from Sequential Dreams, one of several recording aliases of Canada-based electronic music composer Ron Charron. The tenth installment in the Sequential Dreams series, Metamorphic Waves was particularly inspired by Tangerine Dream’s Force Majeure era, expounding on the band’s late 70’s and early 80’s signature electronic music style – much to the extent that this album often convincingly sounds like it was recorded on the very same equipment! Comprised of six compositions spanning a little over an hour, each piece ranges from approximately nine to twelve minutes in length, with Ron incorporating various elements of ambient, Berlin-school, progressive rock and electronic space music into his layered arrangements. Melodically dynamic and rhythmic throughout, the album showcases a spectacular array of adventurous sci-fi soundscapes, classic sequencer motifs and cosmic vocalizations, as the true spirit of vintage synthesizer music is effectively transferred to the modern era.

The opening piece, “The Last Ship”, is initially introduced by a wobbly drone before unfolding like a medley throughout over a span of nine minutes. Seemingly embarking on a far-flung space voyage, the piece is guided along by dynamic rhythms that are laced with progressive rock and accompanying electric guitar reminiscent of Pink Floyd. At about a third of the way into the composition, the drums gently fade as sequencers emerge to the forefront seguing into a very Tangerine Dream-like motif, which seemingly evokes that of travelling through a space tunnel filled with pulsing laser lights. “Beyond Darkness” is introduced by a gorgeous ambient soundscape full of blissful dreaminess, effectively bringing-to-mind images of an astronaut floating in space. Choppy vocal samples and a sequenced bassline soon follow as they eventually unfold into a rhythmically driving arrangement of drums, guitar and synthesizer. My favorite piece on the album is easily “Submariners”, which opens with spooky deep-sea effects that seemingly conjure up scenes from underwater sci-fi movies such as Leviathan and The Abyss. A hazy mist of angelic tones drift in and out of the listening space, as if the voyager is traversing the oceanic depths of an alien planet while observing strange lifeforms below. A beautifully dreamlike yet foreboding soundscape, it eventually unfolds into a mesmerizing sequencer pattern in classic Tangerine Dream fashion.

Arguably the most accomplished and impressive album by Sequential Dreams to date, the arrangements, melodies and sound production are simply top-notch on this offering. Remaining true as always to the timeless essence of pioneering electronic music, Metamorphic Waves is a sonic adventure not to be missed, especially if you’re a fan of classic Tangerine Dream such as myself!
Rating: Excellent   Excellent
- reviewed by Candice Michelle on 11/10/2017
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