Author Topic: Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"  (Read 830 times)

Chronotope Project

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Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"
« on: February 20, 2013, 12:36:30 PM »

CHRONOTOPE PROJECT
Chrysalis
CD-R/DIGITAL DOWNLOAD, Relaxed Machinery, 2102

The musician behind Chronotope Project is Jeffrey Ericson Allen, who has an eclectic background in classical, new acoustic and theatrical music. As a composer, Jeffrey is triggered by themes that contrast yin and yang, of mysteries that open themselves slowly, gradually unfolding and revealing hidden facets.

"Chrysalis" contains music centered on the theme of transformation and refers to the unity of space and time, the intimate connection of the relative and the absolute. Moreover, its a subtle and quite ambitious ambient/space release bridging smooth pulsations with dreamy, soft breathing textures, all spiced and deepened with extensive melodic curls and shapes.

The evocative and sensitive music on the five tracks glistens and evolves slowly, backed by some spatial percussive elements (executed in a minimal sense on three pieces) as it gently carries along. The ethereal and the atmospheric "shake hands" throughout the single tracks, evoking similar imaginary spheres and rich emotions as found on certain Robert Roach and Steve Roach releases, while executing its own true voice most of the time. The deepest, most tranquil spaces surface on the soft shimmering"Reflecting Pool". 


All in all, the sonic vistas created on"Chrysalis" are a mesmerizing kind of storytelling with a strong sense of wonder and true spirit running underneath.
A good pair of headphones is highly recommended for immersing in the aural splendor of this quality ambient release. Well done, Jeffrey!

Website: www.chronotope-project.com
Bert Strolenberg, Sonic Immersion, 2/20/2013
www.sonicimmersion.org/review.php?letter=C&review=72619
reprinted with permission
Jeffrey Ericson Allen
Chronotope Project

El culto

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Re: Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2013, 07:02:04 PM »
Maybe im alone with this opinion....never mind, but is this a "review"?

Lets be realistic...

- The writer mention who is behind the release
- Next he speaks very vaguely about the content and refers to some well know artists in this genre.
- Very soon we reach "All in all..." already

Sorry, but all of this could be also a text of a press release by the artist.

Im just wondering, what is the value of something called "review" if it doesnt go into depths or more detailed aspects? As an interested person for new/other music and/or artists, really, I cant get much information out of this review.

For instance:

 "The ethereal and the atmospheric "shake hands" throughout the single tracks, evoking similar imaginary spheres and rich emotions as found on certain Robert Roach and Steve Roach releases"

More or less a standard phrase....i think some reviewers makes their life a bit too easy in today.

Cheers,
Tomas

drone on

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Re: Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2013, 09:25:54 PM »
You have some valid points about reviews Tomas.  I happen to like berts reviews because they're honest and if he didn't like something he will mention it.  His reviews are usually short but he does review a lot of releases, and maybe time is a factor.  I would rather read a short review that's to the point instead of a long one that is ambiguous and you can't tell if they're recommending it or not.  Also, I think this music can be difficult to describe with words, its not easy!  In my own reviews I try to describe the music, compare it to other artists for a point of reference, and be as honest as I can.  I try to come up with some distinctive way of looking at an album.  I think some reviewers, like Chuck Van Zyl, do this really well. 

petekelly

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Re: Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2013, 03:21:56 AM »
Yes, perhaps that isn't the most informative or imaginative of reviews, but I would imagine the artist is pleased with it. I think some musicians would like more of a technical appraisal of their work, but I like to hear the emotional reaction the work has for a reviewer too.

On the broader subject of online reviews, I'd have thought having some kind of web presence (Blogs are pretty pain-free these days) to archive the reviews is a good move. if (heaven forbid!) the 'host site' folds (Hypnos or the RM Ning, in our case), where would there be any archive of the reviews ?. On another point, reviewers who choose to review only physical releases are missing out on a lot of music and potential readers. The whole review 'scene' has certainly changed from the days of Binkelman, Bienowski, Bebbington et al - I'm not saying the changes are for the worst, just that the whole online ambient music world itself has changed.

The Hypnagogue site is a great site methinks in terms of content, diversity and also how to use a Blog to set up a review site.


APK

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Re: Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2013, 11:48:12 AM »
First ... excellent album Jeffrey!  Quality stuff.

And on Bert's review. I thought it had some content. Locates the music style and is fairly precise about his impressions of the work. Also concludes with a valuation. So not too bad for a brief encapsulation. Sure, it's what I would call 'impressionistic' in its descriptions. We are seeing a lot of that these days. Sometimes this way of writing works for me ... sometimes not.

I agree with Drone On that Chuck Van Zyl does something similar to this very well. Often brief, but terse and to the heart of the matter.

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APK

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Re: Bert Strolenberg's REVIEW of Chrontope Project's "Chrysalis"
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2013, 11:51:22 AM »
And speaking of Chuck, here is his review of Chrysalis.
He is playing some on Star's End this coming weekend.

................................

Chronotope Project, the musical persona of Jeffrey Ericson Allen,
produces an electronic music realized without turning off the
conscious mind. His CD CHRYSALIS (72'12") presents five intriguing and
renewing thought experiments - mental adventures on a darkling plain.
The sounds themselves have but a small force of their own. Yet through
Ericson Allen's arrangement, pacing and appealing sonic dynamics he
convincingly re-conjures the singularly gorgeous auditory realm first
heard on albums such as "Light From the Pleiades", "The Stargazer's
Journey" and "The Way Home". A deconstruction and deceleration of
classic sequencer Spacemusic albums, CHRYSALIS offers lush detailing,
the stability of consonance and a pleasant musical arc. The composer
is in possession of a diverse musical background, which is kept in
reserve - placing the more delicate ideas of texture and atmosphere
over technique and virtuosity. When Ericson Allen occasionally
connects with a melody, it is in a profound way. Whether sliding from
one rounded note to the next, or beautifully converting a spare evenly
paced melodic line into dramatically shifting chords, the listener is
constantly being invited inside the piece. Other galaxy expanding
works on CHRYSALIS pull our attention across a twilight digital realm
defined by echoing chimes, slow slurring solos and a syncopated
synthesizer pulse. Each chord change alters the direction, color and
mood, and by album's end we feel a great resolution has been reached -
leaving us with much to dream about.

Chuck van Zyl
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The Circular Ruins / Lammergeyer / Nunc Stans