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lloyd cole / hans-joachim roedelius - Selected Studies Vol 1
**Ten years since the venerable Roedelius and Lloyd Cole (he ov The Commotions) first made contact, they present a suite of searching, melodic synth music** "The first results of their endeavours, now released, are modestly entitled "Selected Studies Vol. 1". Studies, strictly speaking, represent incomplete explorations of compositional and tonal possibilities. And yet this album reveals mature, carefully composed music, as if Cole and Roedelius had been working together for years already. Both artists focus on electronic sounds in a selection of succinct, direct pieces, free of musical garrulousness. Cole neither sings nor plays guitar and Roedelius rarely touches the keys of his grand piano. Instead, both musicians have developed a subtle soundscape which only drifts towards pure noise on one track, "Wandelbar". All of the other "studies" on the album move within a vast spectrum of harmonic wonder and rhythmic stepping stones. However paradoxical it may sound, "Selected Studies Vol. 1" is reminiscent of the music of Claude Debussy, if electronic instrumentation had been available to him 120 years earlier. Highly impressionistic images flicker around the listener, airy, transparent, lost in time, each its own window on a bright, yet mysterious world. Far removed from kitsch, ambient and feel-good music, "Selected Studies Vol. 1" demands to be listened to attentively if the serious artistic expression of these two musicians / composers is to be appreciated fully. This opens up the album's beauty and depth. Cole and Roedelius seek to present fantastic, aural topographies in opposition to the dullness of the real world, inviting us to enter a friendly labyrinth of constant surprise, a place one can still leave at any time, without fear of getting hopelessly lost."