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Invisible Fields

 Spyra - Invisible Fields - PS 08/98
  Release Date: 19 January 2003
  Limitation: 2000

   Test Transmission                             4.20
   Entropy is Just...                            8.54
   ...a Seven Letter Word                        9.27
   Three Players in an Artifical Landscape       2.44
   XyloCity Part I                              10.54
   XyloCity Part II                              9.50
   Bath                                         23.57
   Temporarily Not Available                     3.54

  all tracks written by Wolfram DER Spyra

Starts off with a trippy vocal sample, which breaks into some nice unusual synths. The track is entitled "Test Transmission", and the name seems to fit with the music. It seems to be a techno montage of samples and beats all coming at you. The synth lines are most wonderful however.

Track two starts off with some Spyra sounding samples and synth lines. The music is beautiful, and amazing. It is mellow with slow beat which seems to make you smile. There are some nice ambient sounds mixed within the beats. With -6:20 the music adds a new layer, and seemingly become more chilled out than before. With -2:57 is sounds like rain mixed with a funky beat. -1:45 introduces an interesting sound synth, that turns into a highly melodic finish.

Track two and three mix nicely into a psychedelic ambient techno melody, that streams quirky samples throughout the mix. The ambience blends with a nice melodic drum beat. It seems to drift you off into an epic journey. -5:27 This part completely blows me away! it has made me warm and my skin tingle. The beat changes, and introduces a new direction, still sounding ambient, yet with a faster beat.

Track four introduces yet another direction, and synth line. The music at times sounds (slightly) similar to Tangerine Dream. Interesting and highly original.

Track five and six blend in some IDM type beats, yet still maintaining the Sprya sound. -4:05 is the highlight of the track. Everything seems to blend in all at once, creating a heavenly trance like journey. Truly amazing. Track five fades, and mixes nicely with six. There are some tribal and ambient qualities, which quickly blend into a mellow ambient techno mix. With -6:00 that familiar funky synth returns, creating a wonderful mindset. It remains deep and full of ambient layers.

Track seven is almost 24 minutes long. It starts off with some static and odd samples. The static resembles rain, and the mechanical booms sound like thunder. Some female vox samples infiltrate the thunder and seemingly changing the flow. The track changes many times, and with each change it creates a more euphoric feeling. Around the -15:00 mark, the flow seems to bump into some disruptive samples. The track becomes darker and more suspicious. The track really becomes disillusioned and paranoid around the -10:50 mark.

The final track is a piano track called "Temporarily Not Available", which seems to simulate the "hold" music in your brain. The music has been temporarily changed into something completely different. This is a very nice way to finish the cd. This track makes you smile and know that everything is good. You are left with a very positive feeling at the end.

Wolfram DER Spyra has the most amazing synth lines and melodies. I have not heard someone come close to his amazing sounds. I can see this cd being one of my all time favorite cds. Is this Sprya's best work to date?

(review by jackthetab)

Even Spyra's back-to-front cd cases say 'hey don't expect me to conform' and so, with yet another venture which pays homage to radio waves, there are several unexpected surprises herein. Witness the epic "Bath" a complex and brooding piece, the aural equivalent of an abstract expressionist painting; at times environmental and textural, at other times almost industrial; alternately deconstructed and then solidified. It will be fascinating to see how his legion of supporters react to this track! In stark contrast to "Bath" is the opener and obligatory novelty track "Test Transmission" with its Kraftwerk-esque use of vocal samples. Similarly, the closer treats us to another staple component of Spyra's Fax offerings, a solo piano track. I'm neither for or against its inclusion but, providing a far more sublime interlude is "Three Players In An Artificial Landscape" another entertaining and wistful departure from his norm. As this is Fax's first offering on its Sub Label for several years, expectations for this release are fair brimming over and I think most will have their expectations met. Yes, there is still a staple portion of 'analogue years' influenced material yet Spyra seems able to bring something extra, something fresh, to each track. On the 2-track "Entropy Is Just...a Two Letter Word" an up-front bass line interacts with some imaginative electro-percussive rhythm patterns, whilst a simple melody weaves its way casually in and out. With jazzy overtones, not unlike those to be found on Polytime (PK08/140) what starts out life as a subterranean groove subsequently gives way to several innovative tempo changes. This ability to create a musical canvas awash with ideas whilst remaining completely coherent and fluid is fast becoming a Spyra trademark. He seems to have perfected an awareness (and many of the nuances) which, reasonably, one might only expect from a time-served percussionist ... and ultimately, this is a fine piece of work. On another 2-track offering "XyloCity" we basically get what it says on the tin: Der Spyra plays Der Spyra (with some familiar shades of Phonehead) whilst simultaneously pulling off the illusion that Karl Berger called into the studio for a coffee and chat just as the tape was rolling. Yeegodz he even ventures into oriental territory. It isn't difficult to admire this release which, very possibly, is his best to date for Kuhlmann & Co.

(review by Paul Milligan)

Invisible Fields starts with a word of thanks by a robo-voice to the guys of presumably Lernaut & Hauspie, the major Flemish speech technology company that went bankrupt some years ago. After these words the voice however always repeats "thiz komputer sukz" ... guess der Spyra saw his stock-savings going through the drain too!

The electro voice quickly talks you into an eighties clubby happy track and voila, you're getting all spooled up now, just to be brought back to total chill, decrescendo, first with more tranquil yet roaring beatscapes in a rainy garden, then by some kind of marimba doing her cozy thing .

A Seven Letter Word exhales pure emotion, bursts with kicking broken beats and such strong embracing melodies; is so warm and intense I'd say the word is 'love' but that's too short .... (it's entropy).

Things get even more intimate once in the little garden of sounds where insects and an 'acoustic' guitar take over and finally hush everything to those precious seconds of silence...

And then we leave for XyloCity, where the grass is blue and the girls are pretty, and full of soulful rhythm too, until deep into the night, very, very deep...

You wake up in the pouring rain, staring in front of you for more then twenty minutes digging up all kind of bits and pieces - entropy is the degree of chaos - very environmental, from gentle sadness to dark drama on the rhythm of an endless ticking metronome that seems to be saying "you will awake now" ... but you don't: you're on the contrary stuffed in some kind of Irrlicht organ pipe and ultimately blown into total delirium until you hear no more.

Now that all is over, a beautiful solo piano play lets you get back into you. And you feel good.

Admiration is the right word indeed.

(review by Jean-Marc Dekesel)


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