Redshift IV - Siren
This CD presents a healthy slab of Redshift's fantastic concert at the 1999 Alfa Centauri festival in Holland. I was privileged enough to be on the front row, in a fairly central position, hence this brings back happy memories indeed. And I think I'm right in saying that this was Redshift's first live outing since their 1996 appearance at Jodrell Bank which spawned the bulk of material on 'Ether'.
'Downtime' was released at the Alfa festival and it was that album which heralded the darker approach which has continued on 'Halo'. However, for the concert the sound they produced leans more towards 'Ether' than 'Downtime' hence get ready for more rollercoaster sequencing than that indefatigable melodic guile which is such a strength of their work.
The formula adopted is fairly straightforward. Mark Shreeve manipulates the Moog IIIC with such expertise that it really is a sight to behold, and the sound produced is frankly breathtaking. When he lets the Moog off the leash it can result in only one thing - complete domination of the sound stage. He tweaks and adjusts the sequences so that they mutate and squirm in joyous rapture. It's totally fantastic, but mindful that "light and shade" are important elements it's not too long before he reigns in the beast, clamps on the dampers and leaves the merest hint of the carnage which preceded. Hence the other elements of the Redshift formula can emerge, surging synth pads, subliminal melodic hooks and delicious guitar refrains pitched to perfection. Then the monster re-emerges, the other elements scatter like scalded cats, and another trail of delicious sequential devastation is furrowed. Magnificent.
If this sounds like your type of music then wait no longer. The fourth chapter in the Redshift journey is here. 'Siren' will completely blow you away. File next to 'Ether'.
Graham Getty - used with permissionwww.synthmusicdirect.com