- CD #1
- Liquid Coincidence Part 1 [21:59]
- Liquid Coincidence Part 2 [30:51]
- Liquid Coincidence Part 3 [25:54]
- CD #2
- Liquid Coincidence Part 4 [18:18]
- Liquid Coincidence Part 5 [18:48]
- Liquid Coincidence Part 6 [24:02]
- Liquid Coincidence Part 7 [13:38]
Warm, flowing soundscapes, rhythms and well-paced sequencing with the fantastic, vibrating and very expressive voice of Lisa
Unashamedly Schulze if you ever for a moment thought that Schulze may have been one to compromise on his musical approach when working on a joint venture, this new release ‘Farscape‘ is one that should make you think again. Both performers come across very strongly; both performers are obviously completely focused, both performers excel themselves.
On this two disc set we are presented with moments of tenderness, high drama, contemplation, and yes you guessed it the ubiquitous Schulzian sequencing that mean’s a lot of things to a lot of people. The album has already been described as amazing and Schulze as a complete visionary in his field. I’d use the term visionary with a great deal of care, but to call the album amazing may for once not be that far removed from the truth!
Lisa Gerrard‘s vocal ability is astounding with a creative dexterity which parallels that of Schulze himself her voice working wonderfully well alongside the music of Mr. Schulze. Then of course there’s Schulze himself who is clearly firing on all cylinders here.
From start to finish the whole musical ebb and flow of the pieces are succinct offering up a steady electronic world of escapism that is quite simply captivating. ‘Farscape‘ is packaged the now typical gatefolded card clip case design as used on all of the ongoing re-issue series together with an accompanying 14 page booklet. It contains informative write ups from both Gerrard and Schulze about the way in which the album came about as well as several photos along the way. Speaking of the booklet photo’s, there is one almost freakish looking picture of Schulze and Gerrard sitting together l say freakish as for some bizarre reason somewhere down the line someone has decided to haphazardly cut and paste a new picture of Schulze‘s head onto Schulze‘s body.what’s all that about? I’ve seen the original unadulterated photo on the official site and there’s nothing wrong with it. Now we have a picture of Gerrard sitting there apparently working what appears to be a Klaus Schulze ventriloquists dummyas l say, very strange? In some of the booklet notes l found that Klaus got a little too technical and Lisa got a little too spiritual for my liking, so what with that and dodgy photo’s l guess you’re thinking l’m getting a tad too cynical about this whole release. Let’s get back to the music as that’s where it’s all happening.
Disc one contains three extended pieces entitled ‘Liquid Coincidence’ parts 1,2 & 3,( disc two containing parts 4 to 7) the opening track setting the scene for the entirety for the first disc. This twenty two minuter drifts in on a smooth sea of shifting synthetic strings courtesy of the maestro and it’s not long before Gerrard joins the party in a surprisingly almost masculine low register. Pretty soon everything is going according to plan as the voice lifts over wave after wave of sedate silken synth pads. A light sequence steps through the mix about six minutes in, only to be augmented some three minutes later by a more bell like arpeggio and light percussion.
As Klaus suggests, active listening is required on the part of the listener and it’s true. If you listen carefully you can hear Schulze‘s improvisations hammered out in the background in a rather subdued fashion set low and wide in the mix. A slight tweak on the percussion has all the parts in place and though you may have barely noticed the vocals vanishing as the piece developed they return in the last seven minutes seeing the piece to an effortless close.
Part 2(30.56) kicks off sublimely with a rather choppy gating, panning effect making you wonder what is going on with the mix. Gerrard is already busy with the vocal ad-libs as a tiny arpeggio bounces into the soundfield, again this is all very chilled out, laid back stuff. Light tabla and percussion arrive as those drifting chords change undiscernibly leaving tons of room for Gerrard‘s voice to take centre stage, something she does with the greatest of ease. Again there appears to be a great synergy between these two great performers as they interact, this is absolutely enthralling music of pure fantasy. Halfway through l’m completely relaxed listening to the gentle ripping synths weave their way through the mix like some floating lullaby. The vocal rises once more as the piece reaches a conclusion of sorts, the percussion returning to the mix.
The twenty six minute third part unsurprisingly drifts into play, the vocal styling’s returning from the outset. A more deliberate sequence appears giving the track a little more momentum. I think we actually hear Gerrard clearing her throat about four minutes in,( something they forgot to edit out maybe?). Either way, a barely noticeable quibble as soon the drums arrive, lacking the contemporary frills that have so often spoiled previous Schulze recordings of the last decade. The metronomic drum pattern and steady backbeat continues as further alterations are made to the sequencing and modulation. The vocal vanishes making way for the sequences to flourish until in the closing nine minutes the voice returns in an almost operatic fashion at times. Again the measure of vocal verses synth is absolutely spot on, the track coming to a timely end and l’m already reaching for disc two! Whoa!! What’s going on now l thought l was listening to a quiet relaxing New Agey album here? l should have known better this being Schulze.Part 4(18.24) really does spring to life in a solemn dramatic and cinematic way,( stock in trade material for Gerrard‘s usual film work). Fender Rhodes piano plays against off the wall electronic effects, dissonant brass sections and disaffected synth. The vocal acrobatics go into overdrive as we shift from a hellish sound into the progressive groove of a more typical Schulze track at the halfway mark. This track is all such a surprise after the tranquil nature of disc one, Gerrard making some amazing vocal interjections throughout. I’m sure Schulze used the piece to give free reign to her full vocal range. A superb track that just creeps up on you.
Part 5(18.53) is upon us and l can’t wait to see what comes next. Brilliant more sonic weirdness! This album really is turning out to be something else. More disturbing epic strings and voice open up proceeding’s prior to a shift into the light of something closer to that experienced on disc one. A sequence arrives as Klaus plays at the electric piano again. Five minutes in and a very deliberate sequence plods in joined by simplistic but very effective drums offset against the sequencer patterns, classic stuff, classic Schulze maybe?
The twenty four minute ‘Part 6’ rolls into town like some great lamentation as Gerrard‘s voice takes on an operatic timbre once again over symphonic strings. Like a variation on ‘Part 2’ the track evolves at no great pace as Gerrard almost morphs her voice from one register to another in a most absorbing way. At times feminine, at times masculine, at times childlike l’ve never heard anything like it it’s almost as if there were several singers in the vocal booth. Schulze takes a back seat here as the wordless vocal workout continues. Due to the improvisational nature of the music the voice doesn’t always catch the constantly changing chords of Schulze’s synths and for a short time there are words from a wordless voice adding more interest. Klaus virtually see’s out the last eight minutes of the piece on his own the voice having served its purpose.
The final instalment, ‘Part 7’(13.38) is with us fading in slowly with a slightly sinister undercurrent. An arpeggiation tinkles around the mix as the voice starts up for one final outing. Five minutes in and a rather busy rhythm leads the way. Klaus is also kept occupied on the peripheries with the synths, but never once pushes his efforts to the foreground. This once again is a piece for the voice to excel, Gerrard having a tougher time of it with drums plastered all over the track. The closing few minutes seeing all that remains are the resonant arpeggiations and those strings drifting endlessly on truly celestial stuff indeed. Quite simply, ‘Farscape’ is a far reaching album, period.
‘Liquid Coincidence 1-7’ really do appear to be one single cohesive mass of music and with Lisa Gerrard on hand what music the two of them make. The breadth and depth of the material presented on this release is amazing, Schulze really is on top form here with compositional developments that are pretty much perfect. I was a bit concerned upon reading in promotional blurbs that Klaus described the music as only being ‘half composed’ and again he mentioned ‘active listening is required’ l honestly thought this was about to become one of those collaborative moments that probably shouldn’t be committed to disc at all, how wrong can you be.
Both Gerrard and Schulze give truly inspired performances, with music that ranges from the cerebral to the cataclysmic and all else in-between. No great solo’s from Schulze unfortunately, most all of the work with the electronics department being kept just one notch above subtle. Klaus clearly states that he wishes to work again with Lisa Gerrard and l think it’s clear to see why having listened to this recording. They are artistes in different fields of music, but most certainly appear to be infused with the same mind set in their approach to their art.
Jos Lieffering / Nederland –
Ik heb de cd Farscape nu een paar keer beluisterd, maar vind Klaus Schulze zonder zang toch beter. Een cd’tje is nog wel leuk om te beluisteren van Lisa Gerrard, maar dan nog eens de tweede te horen vermoeid me echt. Het spijt me, maar als dit de toekomst van Klaus Schulze gaat worden, dan haak ik toch wel af.
Klaus, breng weer eens iets in de stijl van X of Body Love uit.
2008. Jos Lieffering / Nederland
Mick (TheED) –
I’m just listening to the new promo of double CD ‘Farscape‘ with Klaus Schulze & Lisa Gerrard on vocals, a great mix of electronics from the master with the haunting vocals of this one time Dead Can Dance singer.
We all remember the emotional vocals from her on the film Gladiator.
2008. Mick (TheED)