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Michael Brückner - The Outsider - Music inspired by the Life and Work of H.P Lovecraft CD (album) cover


Michael Brückner


Progressive Electronic

4.00 | 1 ratings

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Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars German composer Michael Brückner is well on the way to establishing himself as one of the most unpredictable and talented musicians currently active in progressive electronic related circles, with an ever growing body of work that shows great variety and the perfect balance between retro and modern sounds. The imagination of author H.P Lovecraft and even his curious personal life is therefore a perfect source of inspiration for the artist, and `The Outsider ? Music Inspired by the Life and Work of H. P. Lovecraft' is surely one of his most varied and colourful works. Released back in 2002, the first volume of a kind of trilogy (more on that later), it's comprised of 21 tantalising continuous flowing fragments that are as vivid and evocative as many of the author's written works, and thankfully is not some tired collection of creaky gothic clichés, which it easily could have been.

Looking at some of the highlights, `Haunter of the Dark' opens with shimmering hallucinatory ambience, `The Call of Cthulu' is a groaning chasm of brooding pulsing stalking beats and brief eerie treated narration, and `New England Childhood' is a fleeting piano reflection with weird voices and electronic slivers that wouldn't have sounded out of place from Rick Wright on Pink Floyd's avant-garde experiment`Ummagumma'.`Weird Tales' is a drowsy psychedelic drone, `In the Walls of Eryx' has subtle clipping loops, `Through the Gates of the Silver Key' has cool slinking beats and Tangerine Dream-flavoured machine meltdowns, and the title track is a tasty and powerful Goblin-esque synth plod!

Middle eastern vibes shamble through `The Music of Erich Zann', dreamy synths , vocoder voices and subtle grooves saunter around `It Is Not Dead', `Greyhound Travels' is gentle ambient purity, and the fleeting `Manhatten Rag' is a cheeky and surprising Orb-like dub distraction! `I Am Providence' is symphonic and regal, `Shadow Out of Time' all free-form deep-space expanse, `The Doom That Came to Sarnath' is a hypnotic ethnic percussion drone not far removed from some of the work of Steve Roach, and `Sonja's Theme (The Craft of Love)' is an embracing romantic theme to end on.

`The Outsider' was further complimented by a second standalone disc entitled `It Is Not Dead: The Outsider Remakes' that reworked several pieces here completely, and a final (to date) release a year later with `Breakfast on Yuggoth'. Brückner may have more melodic and approachable albums, but this mix of ambient, electronica, Berlin School atmospheres and avant-garde experimentation fits nicely alongside his more daring and experimental works such as 2010's `Ombra', and, as always, his influences never end up sounding like imitation for even a second. It's more evidence of the talent and versatility of Michael Brückner as one of the best progressive electronic artists of this generation, and fans of both the composer and the author should investigate this fascinating release.

Four stars.

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 4/5 |


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