Star Tales… and now I have no idea what to say. On one hand I would love to give you a full oversight of what this album is potentially going to do to you once you hit the play button but on the other hand, the possible range of psychedelic journeys it will take you on by listening to this might get restrained if I tell you about the places that this album took me to.
The first track “Dreamport” is the station where you embark for the journey and where a commanding yet gentle voice tells you to synchronize your dreams which should be taken seriously so that the music can develop a maximum of efficiency.
Star Tales is my personal soundtrack to the places I always wanted to go to and imaginary alien civilizations I wanted to visit. Of course that is because my fascination and interest in the origins and depths of space knows no boundaries and everything about this album blends in perfectly with what I believe there is beyond the frontiers of our solar system and the milky way.
How does Thanasis Lightbridge, the mastermind of Dol Ammad, achieve this though? Thanasis is a fan of music in the vein of Vangelis. To refresh your memory: Vangelis wrote the soundtrack to 1492 with Gérard Depardieu, a movie about Christopher Columbus’ journey to the new world and its discovery. Whoever remembers the main theme song, the choir and epic scale of it will find it easier to get an idea of what Dol Ammad is about although the choir is pretty much the only common ground shared by these two.
Thanasis doesn’t use too many classical music elements to create his trademark spacial atmosphere. Actually almost none, let apart the choir and the horns. Try to picture it like this (metaphorically). The members of the choir are standing as the brightest stars in the nightsky and fill the instrumental explosion (big bang…) with life and soul and brings vitality into the supposedly empty infinitiy of the universe. That is to give you a picture of the musical consistency we are dealing here with. Amazingly dense keyboards get their punch through distorted guitars, the choir is lifted to a divine level by doubling their lines with horns and synthesizal frenzy. Whoever expects an orgy in terms of epic music is guaranteed to get it. However, Thanasis doesn’t always go full scale. Rhapsody’s Alex Holzwarth isn’t always there to doublebassdrum the songs to new highs of grandeur. Thanasis understands when it is time for a little break to primarly let the listener recover but secondly and most importantly to get more diversity into the course of the album.
The probably biggest strength of this album is its sheer amazing amount of quality composition and how long it takes to really learn this album by heart. I listened to it so many times now and trust me: it takes forever to really grasp this album. Not really because of its compository complexity but when you listen to the album you are so absorbed by the atmosphere it creates that in first instance you will listen to this over and over again because it’s like a free ticket to your own interstellar paradise, and for me personally, it is a place I really like to be at as much as possible. And then, someday maybe, you will want to work your way through this cosmic storm of musical elements you didn’t really care about before because all that mattered was the effect. The keyboards, the drums, the guitar, how the choir and the synths throw the main parts back and forth to each other and how it all explodes in a big acoustic orgasm that gives its listener an amount of enjoyment that hardly fits into the unpresent frontiers of our universe…
Star Tales comes in a beautiful digipack that perfectly underlines how colorful and diverse and way ahead of our time this music is. I recommend that you go to www.electronicartmetal.com right now and order your copy right away… and also get Ocean Dynamics while you are at it! That should give you enough Electronic Metal to chew on for a couple of months. Space on!
Release: November 2004
Label: Electronic Art Metal
Avantgenre: The Hyperspacial Electronic Metal Opera
Official site: http://www.dolammad.com
Review online since: 28.10.2007 / 08:31:46
01 – Dreamport