Hans-Joachim Roedelius

Momenti Felici

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This CD by German synth music pioneer Hans-Joachim Roedelius features almost no synthesizers at all. When they do appear (most prominently on "Über den Wolken"), they're a background instrument, supporting his piano. At other times, Roedelius duets with saxophonist Alexander Czjzek. But the primary instrument is his grand piano, and the pieces aren't the droning marathons of 1970s German "kosmische" music, they're three- and four-minute vignettes (some tracks are in the six-minute range). They're definitely indebted to the minimalism of his work with Kluster/Cluster and Harmonia, but there are some surprises here, too; a stretch of hammering piano on "Anima Mundi" may remind some listeners of a similar passage in Isaac Hayes' "Hyperbolicsyllabicsesquedalymistic." The 2011 reissue of this CD, originally released on Virgin in 1987, includes three short bonus tracks which are of little consequence, though they do sound much like the rest of the album. Ultimately, this is a disc likely to be more inviting to fans of new age music or very light modern classical rather than the hardcore electronic music devotees by whom Roedelius' '70s work is justly revered.

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