Monday, February 18, 2013

Navigateur Travels To 2020

One of my favourite producers of avant garde and experimental synth music is Navigateur. Walking a line somewhere between LaserDisc Visions and Com Truise the sounds produced by this talented visionary consistently offer new and diverse journeys into the galaxies of synth music while always maintaining a primarily 80s tone and personality.

One of Navigateur's tracks from last year, We Need The Beat, was my number 2 track for the year in my Electronica chart and his latest release contains the official home for this masterpiece along with six other totally rockin Navigateur journeys into the future.

The opening salvo, Elevator Music, is a perfectly crafted introduction to the futuristic vistas we're about to explore. Synth tracks flow and pulsate with the colours of futurism, crystallised in chrome and neon, welcoming and yet cold with austerity. This piece is just off-kilter enough to make your centre of gravity feel slightly out of alignement before the floor drops away and our concepts of the near future become rewritten, Navigateur style.

The pulsating neon becomes the Bright Lights of chapter two. The funky staccato loops begin forming in esoteric layers, stippled with vocal stabs and a glorious delirium that is pure Navigateur in colour and motion. There are so many totally rockin 80s sounds in here that are brought into a futuristic dimension, it's like we went right from 1985 to 2020. What Navigateur's sound trades off in its authenticity to 80s sounds it gains in its own personalised vision that manages to remain true and honest.

One just has to hear to radiantly radical opening to the title track, 2020,  to know the heart of the 80s beats loud and proud within the modern vestige displayed. The bass funks up a storm and orchestral stabs punctuate a glitching vocal that is still epically soulful, then the hi-hats open up and the stratosphere becomes a multicoloured kaleidoscope of aural energies. The majesty is breathtaking and the fact this track leads into We Need The Best makes for an absolutely stunning experience.

We Need The Beat is a musical adventure, I personally think, is total perfection. This was one of my most listened to tracks last years and just begs to be put on repeat for hours at a time. The glitch skipping is engineered to masterful brilliance and everything feels like it's riding the same audio roller coaster, leaning into the turns while the inertia bends out the lower end of the spectrum only to then be sent careening in the opposite direction in a startlingly beautiful manner. It's hard, still, to go passed this track on the album, but more Navigateur magic beckons, this time with and extended robotic hand that beckons and guides us into the Destiny Club.

The smoothness of the first half of the album is eschewed for sharper and more sparkling piece that jumps in and out its own dimensionality like some kind of multi layered holographic dancer. This track's midpoint takes on a much more relaxed vignette of calmly serene beauty, but this flight of fancy is merely hinted at before the colours mesh, then flicker once more.

2020 contains Navigateur's own brand of synth romance in Future City Love. The resonating tones of the opening lead into pure 80s teen love splendour as the times of 2020 become the place of first crushes and late night phone calls. The glitch skipping is used in a wonderfully warm new way in this piece, feeling like your heart's skipping a beat when her eyes catch yours across a crowded home room. The final parts of Navigateur's romantic foray ends up at night time on the beach where first kisses beneath the twin moons lead to a whole new future of possibilities.

Our final experience in 2020 keeps to a similar motif in Dream School. This is pointed directly into the dreamy end of the spectrum with a tailspin dive through pink clouds at the speed of sound accompanied by a driving percussive track and a refrain that calms the mind and spirit in the face of all this possibly cataclysmic energy. Pulling out of tailspin and climbing back into the heavens we feel the earth drop away and star filled universe becomes the canvas on which our dreams are painted. The story is made complete as the void of space rotates around our very beings, becoming one with the energies of earth and the cosmos as the final evolution of human kind.

2020 is presented by Synconation Records on their Bandcamp page here for FREE purchase. This release is such a perfectly arranged and constructed experience that it is most certainly deserving of being a Synthetix Reference Experience.

Be sure to give Navigateur lots of love on his soundcloud page here and Facebook page here and thank him in advance for the future we're yet to experience.

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