Boomkat Product Review:
Pivotal Belgian synthesist André Stordeur serves Sub Rosa another pinnacle of their Early Electronic Series with a first-ever vinyl pressing of three pieces - the expanding harmonic scape of Chant 10A (1980) and two which aren’t necessarily ‘early’, but are no less brilliant, with the c.2000 parts of Nervous and Tablas.
Realised at IRCAM, Paris, between 1980-81 on a Serge series 79 and bespoke Serge prototype 1980 Modular synthesiser - built especially for Stordeur by Serge Tcherepnin himself - the record’s most striking feature is the A-side Chant 10A, where Stordeur used a DEC VAX 11/60 CPU running ‘Music 10’ and ‘Chant’ softwares to process his Serge sketches into a beast, gloaming shadow of a piece embedded with ghostly choral swells which really come to the fore in the final section. It’s frighteningly strong stuff, and kinda exactly what we hoped for - safe to say those countless hours spent waiting for his behemoth CPU to do its thing were not in vain.
The other two date much closer to the modern day: Nervous (2000) swivels between head-swallowing black holes and sustained sourness, like a chorale of keening angels, before spiralling the super crisp, pointillist rhythms of Tabla (c.2000) - a purely rhythmic piece peppered with ace trills and intricate pattern shifts that draws upon his travels in New Dehli around 1963, and his subsequent, in-depth studies of modular synth process, to sound almost like some Ø or Plastikman experiment from the same era