Landru "Neurotransmitters" CDr
Wow, this is a really nice surprise for me, discovered only few weeks ago through newly launched Altera Orbe website. Landru, based near Barcelona, Spain, is a solo project of Patxi Hernández. He is also one of the creative forces behind Altera Orbe, together with Ran Kirlian. Landru was before focusing more on dance or chillout oriented electronics, but when I entered into "Neurotransmitters" territory through introducing "Serotonin" composition, my eyebrows were raised right away and brand new sonic dimensions were awaiting to be explored. Yes, "Neurotransmitters" is the first purely ambient-infused album of Landru, released in November, 2011. As mentioned above, this exciting excursion begins with "Serotonin", an icy cold dronescape colored with various, sharply hitting and erupting high-tech percussive sounds. Quite an electrifying performance I must say, introducing Landru's ambient soundscapes at most scientific!!! Important to mention, this album is a strongly conceptual work based around various neurotransmitters, the chemicals which allow the transmission of signals from one neuron to the next across synapses. Now that's a challenging theme to express through sonic visions by an artist who freshly ventures into ambient genre!!! "Acetylcholine" keeps on strongly futuristic route, but this time with more rhythmic approach, while the next piece, "Histamine" unites rather experimental, cacophonic sounds with atmospheric soundscapes. Low drone work, invading "Glycine", is soon joined by various razor-sharp effects and mechanized movements and shifts into coldly pulsing industrialized ambience, amazing!!! "Dopamine" immediately strikes with beautifully crystalline melody, crossed with harsher cybernetics, I really enjoy this catchy blend of nicely balanced softer and rawer passages, filling this journey with imagination and curiosity. "Epinephrine" hits with ice cold spiraling drones, spiced by assorted bleeps and hums, all backed by cavernous sounds. A truly immersing cybernetic dreamscape!!! But "GABA" dives even deeper with sonar-like pings and few eerie high-tech effects, slowly submerging into more massive drone walls before few slightly tribal-spiced grooves are thrown in. Audible ecstasy is guaranteed!!! "Aspartate" evolves into the most upbeat sculpted piece on "Neurotransmitters" with cold, industrialized rhythms. Various noises, rumblings and signals are nicely bridged with deeper atmospheres, evocative melody and ethereal voice-like sounds on "Glutamate". "Melatonin" closes this amazingly adventurous ride with richly sculpted and sharply sounding texture, assembled with hazed factory-like breathings, harsher distortions, catchy metallic implements and warmer, nearly cinematic drifts. "Neurotransmitters" is a very impressive ambient debut by Landru!!! I definitely will keep en eye on this Spaniard, because his co-work with Ran Kirlian entitled "Waterfront" is in the pipeline and his next ambient album "Fimbria" is in the works too. Until then, "Neurotransmitters" album gets my highest recommendation!!!
Richard Gürtler (Apr 14, 2012, Bratislava, Slovakia)