Well, I guess the review of this one comes quite a bit later than I anticipated as I bought at the E-Live 2019 event where it was released. “Spacetones” presents Chuck’s full concert of minimalist Berlin-School inspired synth & sequencer improvisations performed at “E-Day 2018”. Its three lengthy cosmic parts reveal Van Zyl’s true passion for sound and atmosphere) make up an encompassing journey with a great intrinsic drive.
To my ears the 38-minute opening piece is the most impressive: it’s a dynamic sonic rollercoaster with a keen ebb and flow structure blending assorted haunting and eerie sound effects with long strings of tantalizing, tweaked sequencing patterns and vintage pads. The created freeform atmospheres, textures and -sometimes rather thundering- sequencing found here -with occasional solo voices on top- are most transportive and fit in the league of FSP, Brendan Pollard, Emmens/Heij and alike.
Thereafter the voyage winds down signficantly on “Part 2” with gentle freeform moodscapes that shift into dramatic spherical mode as we enter the final “Part 3”. Sequences and fluid mellotron pads are added to them a bit later, but overall this spherescape isn’t yet as captivating as the first piece. Still, with the 68-minute “Spacetones” Chuck Van Zyl has done a fine job that no fan of Berlin School music should miss out on.
You can see what reviews I have done of this artist on the Chuck Van Zyl artist page
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