Composed, played, mixed and mastered by Gert Emmens|
- Part 15 [10:59]
- Part 16 [11:35]
- Part 17 [11:08]
- Part 18 [11:37]
- Part 19 [12:43]
- Part 20 [11:22]
- Part 21 [3:23]
- Conclusion [4:03]
Conclusion was composed and played Januari 2010 by Candenced Haven and Gert Emmens
Jan Dieterich - guitar on track 2 and 4
Tessa Asenjo-Fernándes - voice on track 4
Cara Asenjo-Fernándes - voice on track 4 and 7
Cadenced Haven - keys on Conclusion
"The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3" is the third and last in a series of three albums. Gert Emmens has borrowed the title from one of his favorite bands the Beach Boys. With "The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 2", the writer of this Tearsheet wrote that with that album the Dutchman had created his best work until now. This gave Gert quite an assignment for Vol. 3. But things can only get better, so to say, and Gert has managed to rise above himself again on this wonderful album. Gert is an absolute master in electronic music because of the mix he manages to create: this is a combination between Berlin School-sequencer based music, fine, warm, melodies, fantastic ambient elements and even a little bit of progressive rock. "The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3" is again a masterpiece that will undoubtedly have an appeal to many lovers of electronic music. It is Berlin School but with so many different elements attached to it that it nearly becomes a style of its own. There are many things happening on the album. Also, a lot of credit goes out to the guest musicians on the album like Jan Dieterich on guitar, Cara and Tessa Asenjo-Fernándes (voices) and Laila Quaraishi, a.k.a. Cadenced Haven, with which Gert created the special album "Peregrination" together. Part 15 immediately introduced the special sequencersound of Gert. The guitar of Dieterich plays an important role in the excellent Part 16, as well as Gert’s gently crafted sequences and inventive use of ancient drum boxes, which he loves a lot. On Part 17 fantastic atmospheres introduce a sequence that could have come right out of an album of Tangerine Dream from the second half of the seventies. This piece grows and flows. Dieterich’s David Gilmour-like electric blues-like guitar sound is again present on Part 18. On Part 19 the sequences become a bit harder and metallic as well as more full. And the solo is also beautiful. Gert keeps the drum boxes on almost every track. This music almost reads like a symphony, a long symphony with three Volumes. Not only the "old" Tangerine Dream comes in mind while listening to this album, also TD from the eighties is featured in Part 19. Part 21 and "Conclusion" are shorter pieces (for Gert’s case). In Part 20, together with excellent atmospheres and Mellotron choirs, a vocoder can be heard. In "Conclusion" Cadenced Haven pays a contribution in a symphonic, euphoric end of Gert’s journey to the nearest faraway place. With "The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3" this great series of albums have ended. Gert wouldn't be Gert if he didn't come up with a new intriguing idea in the near future. Keep watching the skies…
2010. Press information
The latest (and final chapter) installment of 'The Nearest Faraway Place' series' is indeed an album that whet my appetite for more when the last track had finished playing. Each and every track totally mesmerized me and made me want more of the same the more I listened to it. Gert has done it...again!
There are eight individual tracks on this CD, but the whole installment should be listened to as if it were composed as a one-piece composition, as the tracks floats into one-another.
The first track, Part 15, starts slowly in a very moody and dark sense, very similar to the album 'Encounter' by Michael Stearns, but later fills your ears with Gert's typical trademark sound that bounces back and forth in a hypnotic manner. Captivating and spacious EM of the highest order!
From hypnontic and spacious moments to something more emotional and yet again moody, we get to hear 'Part16'. This track includes some of the finest moments on the entire CD, with tasteful guitars played along with some heavy sequencing in a splendid mix. It reminds me alot of Gert's first 'Nearest Faraway Place Vol.1' album (which also took use of guitars to a certain extent). Top stuff, one of my favorite tracks!
As the CD is so versatile, structure wise, not one track sounds the same, and yet another track is proof of that!
'Part 17' is another fantastic piece of EM that filled me with joy! This is probably the most 'uptempo' and rhythmic sequencer track on the disc, played in such harmony, and is also quite similar to what you can hear on Gert's album 'The Tale of the Warlock'. It's sound palette & structure is ever changing, and will continue to amaze and inspire each time you listen to it. Good re-play factor!
'Part 18' continues with the sounds of heavy traffic and other typical street ambience. Soon after you will be greeted with some of THE most emotional sounds EM has to offer. This is one of Gert's most emotional pieces to date, if you ask me. And after the 6 minute mark you will, yet again, be greeted by some lush guitar playing together with Gert's vibrant sequencing. Top performance!
Next track, 'Part 19', continues with a long awe inspiring and spacious intro, which soon settles down and transforms into sections with a highly thematic EM feel, almost sounding a bit like the 'Geodesium' albums. This track would be a perfect companion to a Planetarium Show. Sensational!
And as if that wasn't enough, the voyage seems never ending as we approach 'Part 20'. Again, another thematic piece that breathes in and out with deep space elements, but after the 2 minute mark or so it really slows down alot with sad, emotional, and very touching synth lines. A little bit in the same style as 'Crystal Voice' by Tangerine Dream. After a few minutes a Inferno of Gert's fast paced rhythms strikes us again and rounds off the track in a nice way! Impressive!
'Part 21' starts with a synthetic voice of a 'robot', and it seems to me it's trying to tell us something, I'm just not sure what. This is the shortest part out of the 8 and sounds as if it's closing the album, it has that typical feel. Not much to mention here. Make up your own mind on this one. A rather experimental piece, with less melody and ambience to it.
As for the last track, named 'Conclusion', Gert makes one of his first appearances with a new talent called 'Cadenced Haven'. The music here stands out a little bit from the other Parts we have encountered so far. It closes the disc very laid back and moody, in a sad way. A very thoughtful track that did impress me quite a bit. Good job and a warm welcome to Cadenced Haven!
So to sum this album up, it's strength lies in the emotional and moody parts of the compositions. The only weakness I found lies in 'Part 21'. It just didn't cut it for me. Other than that, this is yet another well-produced album that has great re-play factor! My final words are, It's bound to take you to yet another 'Faraway Place'. Highly Recommended! Excellent!!
2010. Kristian Persson / Sweden
The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3 is the last part of this cosmic trilogy that the Dutch synthesist began in 2008. Once again, Gert Emmens covers his sound galaxy by a pleiad of synth lines with his unique tones equal to his gears conception, where plentiful strata wrap of their foggy cosmic intertwine sequences lines. Sequences, sometimes hesitating sometimes biting but always constant, which cross a cosmic tale under foggy steam synth lines and pleasant weeping solos. A musical universe signed Gert Emmens with a beautiful complicity between analogue and digital. A sound universe where the borders of imagination belong as much to the listener as its designer!
A distant synth line ripples lazily on Part 15 opening. We could imagine ourselves at a cosmic fair where mechanical streaks tear the firmament below subtle bass pulsations. A sequence comes along. She waddles at good speed, wrapped that she becomes by a beautiful layer of a lyrical synth which frees soft solos through synth mist, whereas the rhythmic bustles in a universe where synth breaths to multi- coloured tones embrace a languishing rhythmic which finishes its race under droplets and cosmic thunders. With years, Gert Emmens left his sound imprints in the wonderful world of electronic music. All that the Dutch synthesiser touches is inevitably transformed into musical enchantment.
A long movement divided into 8 parts, The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3 presents structures with morphic and floating intros which dive into progressive rhythms with always striking sequences.
Part 16 offers a more cosmic intro with Jan Dieterich's guitar which frees soft vaporous strata in a most heterogeneous sound universe. Mellotron strings carry us to a strange ethereal waltz, guiding us near a wriggling sequence which skips nervously to shape a pace which hems on a beautiful bass line. Part 16 becomes then a big cosmic rock, little as Part 20 finale, where Gert Emmens controls skillfully the rhythm with increasing and decreasing sequences which furrow over vaporous inserts and great synth solos.
After its heavily cosmic intro, Part 17 bites to full teeth in a sequential movement which recall a lot those beautiful TD years. A heavy and nervous sequence that runs breathless beneath the wandering hazes of a foggy synth, until the rhythm explodes and deviates under the strikes of e-drums. Beautiful peaceful solos float above this rhythmic incandescence where we re-know amply the sound universe of the Dutch synthesizer which doesn’t stop surprising with its loopy solos and those soft synth blows so personalized that bicker between sequential permutations. Great Emmens there! With its peaceful tempo, escaped from the morphic depths of its introduction, Part 18 is the most accessible musical piece among The Nearest Faraway Place's project. A beautiful track sits on a sober sequential movement, where guitar and synth are exchanged solos and vaporous strata.
After a haughtiness cosmic intro where synth lines hem above stars, a threatening sequential movement bombards the still indecisive rhythm of Part 19. A ceaseless race where the sequential impulse undergoes subtle modulations, among breaths of a foggy synth before exploding beneath a synth to twisted and languishing solos.
Part 20 offers a caustic and threatening intro, before becoming supple with a beautiful wave of a synth at once nostalgic and protective. A soft and beautiful intro collided by increasing sequences which draw a tempo skipping soberly under a synth to ghostly breaths. Structured in three phases, the movement becomes more hard-hitting with the emergence of electronic percussions which are gobbled up by synth solos which hem and contort under a heavy vitamined tempo. Afterward, we close eyes and we contemplate the end of this long 3 parts cosmic trip with a floating ending where strata confront and collide in a cosmos of ether on Part 21 and mould lovingly in the beautiful orchestrations of Conclusion.
The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3 is in the continuity of the first two volumes. An album where Gert Emmens can seem predictable, but continues to amaze with a subtlety in tones and rhythmic modulations that makes his music as unique as it sounds. As on each of the albums from the Netherlands synthesizer, the music pours between a wonderful complexity of structures and pleasant melodies that hang on to an ingenious sequenced vision and a synth that kicks away its long solos twisted in a strangely foggy poetic cosmic. Some great Gert Emmens, as he always used us to.
2010. Sylvain Lupari / Guts Of Darkness
The CD follows on from Vol 2, with ‘Part 15’ of the series. A high register sequence surges through a swirling backing, seeming to gain energy as it goes. A gorgeous silken melody provides a softening contrast. This is an uplifting opener full of positive energy which packs quite a punch.
‘Part 16’ features lonesome guitar tones over dreamy, shimmering pads. A skipping sequence becomes the main feature but the track really takes off with the second bass laden line of pulsations and tranquil guitar lead. Things never get over the top, just enough syncopation to get the head gently nodding.
The next part is initially all rather soothing, shimmering like a heat haze until suddenly things take a darker twist. An urgent sequence belts forward but then brighter pads return, lightening the mood once more.
‘Part 18’ begins with street sounds and the chiming of a clock. Bright pulsations create a happy atmosphere over which hover soothing melodic motifs. More little guitar touches increase the feeling of well being still further.
The following track is also rather beautiful, crystalline note droplets weaving a wonderful picture all of their own. This is delicate stuff enhanced by a gorgeous lush backing. All is change just before the fifth minute however as an excellent chugging sequence leaps forward.
Ethereal pads get the 20th Part underway. Just close your eyes and let the wonderful sonic textures sooth your mind. As in previous tracks however, just before the half way mark, a sequence makes an entrance. This time a second soon comes to join the first. Lead pads swell and as we go on things become increasingly euphoric. Vocoded speech introduces the penultimate part before things morph into more dreamy atmos.
The album comes to an end with the appropriately titled ‘Conclusion’. It’s a rather symphonic sounding piece, again beautiful but also with a touch of melancholy.
The third and final installment of the "Nearest Faraway Place" trilogy from Gert Emmens begins with melancholic and mysterious pads. Soon the soundscape is replaced by an unexpectedly optimistic sequence. A romantic lead line then emerges. This is melodic and cosmic at the same time and is very typical of Gert Emmens in style. The sequencing on this track is excellent; the solos tasty and reflective. I should also mention the great programming of synthesizers. Gert has really mastered his instruments over the years. As I've mentioned already, Part 15 is typical of Gert Emmens so if you love his style, there's no doubt you will enjoy it. There's also that extra symphonic touch throughout. The track even ends with Vangelis-like electric piano notes on top an "L'Apocalypse des Animaux"-like soundscape.
So good... Spacey slide guitar sounds herald the coming of Part 16. Unique music, cold and yet somehow warm and comforting, very evocative of the beautiful cover art. An "Oxygene"-like arpeggio appears out of nowhere, surprising you with its sheer power and beauty. Transforming into a nice bouncy melodic sequence, it accepts yet another pulsation which is then joined by a pad and that spacey guitar by Jan Dieterich again. Overall the sound is more along the lines of volume 1 of "The Nearest Faraway Place" trilogy. You know, sort of a loungy, rainy, reflective type of thing. The final part of the piece relies on a slow moving electronic rhythm and an oboe-like lead melody.
A solemn symphonic theme introduces Part 17. Amazing, but it feels like you're flying when listening to this. You can almost see all those mountains and snowy peaks below. A rapid sequence enters the stage, sounding like classic Tangerine Dream on steroids. Soon a rhythm appears and a typical Gert Emmens lead. This is dynamic, rhythmic and melodic EM that you've come to expect from this artist. However, this track is perhaps like a slightly pumped up version thereof, partly because of the hyperactive sequence and partly because of the dynamic flow of the piece - the melodies are faster and everything changes quicker than usual. The reflective, theremin-like lead at the end is something unexpected, though.
Street noises and recorded voices introduce Part 18, along with the sound of a tolling bell. A slow, echoing sequence appears along with reflective pads. And I am telling you here and now, guys, that this is some top-notch Gert Emmens music in a slow, spacey style. Nice and flowing, it just gets under your skin. After a while a dynamic sequence enters and the more recognizable Gert Emmens style shines through. However, the track has none of the usual melancholy, relying on major chords and melodies - a very optimistic experience and a nice change of pace. And, yes, I did enjoy the Floydian guitar of Jan. A touch of melancholy does manifest itself throughout the final stretch of this track, though. What I really liked was the beginning of the next track. There's that spacey prog vibe that I find hugely enjoyable with imaginative sounds throughout. Ideal stuff to just sit back and enjoy with your headphones on. A marching sequence is then introduced together with eerie phased pads. Several key changes follow before we embark on a typical Gert Emmens journey with soft rhythms and a flying Minimoog solo.
Part 20 starts with a mysterious soundscape that I wish had lasted longer, because it's really evocative, really atmospheric and immersive. Nice sequences appear together with a mournful lead. A propulsive rhythm starts for what seems like one of the most active Gert Emmens tracks I've heard of late. It has one of the nicest synth solos as well - jazzy and flowing.
Part 21 is a short vocoder interlude, a big surprise and absolutely not something I expected to hear. However, as a fan of vocoder voices (when done properly) I found this piece hugely enjoyable.
"Conclusion" is the final piece of the whole trilogy, done in collaboration with Cadenced Haven. It's a reflective, romantic, symphonic piece of grandiose impact. A nice finishing touch, it represents an emotional climax that's hard to resist. I was deeply touched by it. Thanks, Gert and Laila for this nice piece of music.
If you enjoyed previous volumes of "The Nearest Faraway Place", you just have to have the third volume in your collection. And of course it's a must for Gert Emmens fans and fans of melodic / sequencer EM in general.
2010. Artemi Pugachov / Encyclopedia of Electronic Music
Nuevo trabajo de Gert Emmens publicado por Groove Unlimited.
"The Nearest Faraway Place Vol. 3" es la tercera y última parte de esta trilogía, una serie donde el compositor holandés nos ha demostrado sus ideas y sus conceptos musicales, un hombre que se ha convertido en todo un maestro de la música electrónica. En esta ocasión ha contado con la colaboración de Jan Dieterich (guitarra), Tessa Asenjo-Fernández (voces), Cara Asenjo- Fernández (voces) y Laila Quraishi aka Cadenced Haven (teclados).
Disco muy recomendable para todos los amantes de la buena música electrónica, de manos de un maestro que disco tras disco, no sigue enseñando que la música electrónica todavía está viva, que aún se pueden crear bellas composiciones que nos hagan recrear paisajes imaginarios y que permitan volar a nuestra imaginación.
2010. Roberto Vales / Ultima Fronteira Radio
This CD from 2010 features 77 minutes of stately electronic music.
For this release, Emmens is joined by guests: Jan Dieterich (on guitar), Tessa Asenjo-Fernandez (on child voice), and Cara Asenjo-Fernandez (on adult voice), and Cadenced Haven (aka Laila Quraishi) on keyboards.
Pleasant electronics produce tuneage of pacific serenity with a touch of subtle vitality.
The electronics are stately and versatile, blending delicate tones with softly shrill pitches to achieve a well-balanced resonance that seethes with high appeal.
Gentle keyboards establish lilting melodies that glisten with beauty as they drift overhead. Basic themes are set, then looped to run throughout, while additional riffs are then layered in to provide liquid embellishment.
There are a few instances of light e-perc, but this music generally has no need of strident tempos, relying more on a sense of fluidity in its structure.
Guest guitar is present in two tracks. The lush sustains of a slide nature contribute a haunting edge to the openings, then adopt a spacier sound as they offer languid jazzy riffs to the surging flow.
With this release, Emmens turns to other worlds for musical inspiration, although those "other worlds" may not exactly be of an extraterrestrial nature. These foreign realms could just as easily reside within the imagination of far-thinkers or the more desolate vistas of our own planet. Whatever the case, the resulting moods are ones of expansive detachment, isolation from the rigors of civilized society.
2010. Matt Howarth / Sonic Curiosity