Reviews

SON OF OHM: Zeitgeist (2019)

Psychedelic Waves

Son of Ohm is one of the projects from Dutch multi-instrumentalist Leonardo (another being Astral Son, whose album Wonderful Beyond was number one on last year’s Psychedelic Waves’ Top 30). Son of Ohm is primarily an electronic music project, exploring similar realms to Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze, but also drawing on numerous other influences. Zeitgeist is the second of three releases from Son of Ohm so far this year and takes a somewhat different approach to the other albums. Here Son lets the guitar leap into the forefront, taking the music in a much more psychedelic direction but without sacrificing the aesthetics of the core Son of Ohm sound. He builds slow, powerful, pulsing sequences using the guitar with delay and looping, warping the fabric of reality as science and magic become one. There are three epic tracks that range in length from 13 to nearly 25-minutes.

The shortest, Telefunken, Baby! opens the album with bubbling electronics and a hypnotic guitar riff with a loping bassline. As subtle melodies weave their way through nearly invisible washes of sound, it takes on a distant wandering kind of vibe, till it penetrates your pineal gland, awakening you to a new understanding, even as you find yourself in a dark, Munich nightclub in 1975. On the second track, Endlos, a dizzying array of different colours, textures and melodies are woven in and around each other, whirling and twirling into a fine thread of rainbow light, held taught in the vast darkness of the breathless void. Not just breathtaking though, but senses taking. It’s like a thief of the senses that dances and taunts and slowly seduces you into the very fibres of your soul where shimmering, golden light swims through heavenly, woolen strands of galactic yarn. This is when you start to wonder how it can get any better. It does though, with the final 25-minute epic Third Rock. Cinematic, orchestral music warps, shifting slowly into a fragile electric piano melody, every note dripping with acidic delight as it winds its way through a hallucinatory and disorienting aural forest of the mind. It’s not disturbing though. It’s pleasant, dream-like in nature. Languidly, it changes, alters into a chugging rock n’ roll rhythm, decidedly trippy in nature. And like the transformation the music has just undergone, the listener transforms with it, finally gliding through strange sunlight that illuminates an alien world…called Earth. And then the album ends, leaving you in a state of warm, slightly disoriented bliss, but definitely ready for another listen!

Zeitgeist will surely appeal to fans of music like Manuel Göttsching’s Inventions for Electric Guitar and A. R. & Machines’ Echo. The one thing you need to remember when listening to it is, just sit back and let it blow your mind. Because it certainly will!
Jeff Fitzgerald

The Encyclopedia of Electronic Music

Son of Ohm “Zeitgeist” (self-released, 2019)

This album from Dutch sound explorer Leonardo Soundweaver aka Son of Ohm consists of three long analog synth / electric guitar explorations. We kick off with “Telefunken, Baby!”, which welcomes the listener with its EMS-like twittering effects and rhythmic, echoing electric guitar notes ala Manuel Goettsching. The track grows in intensity gradually, as more guitar loops are added. We then hear a nice analog synth line that transports you right back to 1976’s Berlin. The subtle bass of this track gives it a nice foundation, as the structure remains loose and strictly improvisational. Really, this could have been a lost session of Manuel from his Roma studio in mid-1970’s. The music creates a nice hypnotic effect and if you like minimalism and repetition – this should be to your liking. After a while, some liquid electric guitar soloing is heard, intentionally muffled, as if sourced from a well-aged tape. Heavy effects end this krautrock-y excursion. “Endlos” is straight into business with a repeating bass guitar motif and melodic synths. Again, it is very “Inventions for Electric Guitar”, very “Blackouts”. A drum machine rhythm joins the proceedings, going at a relaxed pace, leaving space for enough improvisation on guitar and synth. I must say that the track does get pretty infectious and I find myself nodding to this one in no time. After a while, the sound gets more intense and rather psychedelic, really focusing on that endless spacey guitar soloing. This is great stuff. “Third Rock” is the longest track that greets you with orchestral samples, rather abstract and sounding like a formless mass of sound. It brings to mind mellotron arrangements of early 1970’s EM. The orchestra is also accompanied by the EMS-like twitters. After a while, a lulling, arpeggiated melody can be heard. Analog synth soloing is a neat element in what is a very kosmische setting. You get classic period Klaus Schulze flashbacks here, although I can’t think of any particular album to compare it to. Another comparison would be early Kitaro circa 1978 (in his spaciest moments). Once the bass sequence enters, though, the music starts sounding like Virgin-era Tangerine Dream, although more minimal. Once the Goettsching / Schickert-style rhythmic, looped, echoing guitar appears, the kraut influences come to the fore. The track gradually gains momentum, with a nice bass drum throb that maintains a relaxed, steady pace. Actually, I get an almost early Kraftwerk-ish feel here, mostly due to the monotonous, almost motorik nature of the rhythmic base. There is a nice guitar solo that gives way for various effects applied to the rhythmic guitar base, giving a really spaced out feeling as the track slowly comes to a close. “Zeitgeist” is a great disc for fans of Manuel Goettsching / Ashra, Günter Schickert, early Schulze, Tangerine Dream and Michael Hoenig. Give it a try also if you like hypnotic, repetitive and spacey EM / kraut in general. Best track: “Endlos”.
By Artemi Pugachov (Encyclopedia of Electronic Music)

Synth & Sequences

“Another nice album from Son Of Ohm to whom one can’t make a bad criticism. If not that he seems too comfortable in his comfort zone”

1 Telefunken Baby! 12:52
2 Endlos 15:49
3 Third Rock 24:29

(DDL 53:12 Berlin School, Krautrock) (V.F.)

A bubble that bursts and reverberates its shadows in a multitude of undisciplined oscillations. A riff of guitars that repeats his birth certificate in loops. For Leonardo Wijma, the recipe is simple and really effective. And especially a winning one! Defying the rule of redundancy of minimalist structures, Son Of Ohm builds his art by bringing these ingredients from the psychedelic rock years whose magnetism has survived time. A bass line structures a base of hesitating rhythm as the bubble of the opening continues to project electronic chirps. It’s with groping that Telefunken Baby! comes out of his cosmic bed to cling to our speakers. The 24-bit sound projects its impact here, at the mouth of our speakers. And we’re still in this 70’s EM pattern with a repetitive structure where sleepy synth pads and keyboard waves are lay down with a touch of alien harmony. The sound effects continue to form these bubbles that mutate into chirps or tones of electronic bats that like to brush past our ears. A second of riffs injects a lighter sound dimension while sculpting these ethereal solos with wha-wha fuzz effects that seem to want to establish a dialect with our senses. ZEITGEIST is the second album of Son Of Ohm in 2019. Following the road undertaken with Paradigma, the one who also plays the role of Leonardo Soundweaver on the chessboard of cosmic rock has used the technique of live improvised sessions from his studio to record the bases of his last album. Hence the feeling of promiscuity between the Dutch composer and his audience. And Son Of Ohm is no exception to his comfort zone by flirting with the sounds of the 70’s while Manuel Göttsching hypnotized many ears with his guitar loops that continue to roll in the labyrinths of time.

Loops that are omnipresent in the psychedelic rock of Endlos and which, under the torture of Son Of Ohm’s fingers, turn into sweet harmonic solos. If the drums, which were added in the next recording session, give that Krautrock touch, the guitar exorcises its charms with a fusional splitting approach where solos, riffs and harmonies come from everywhere. It’s like being in the Ashra Tempel territories here.

Third Rock is worth the purchase of ZEITGEIST alone! This long-lasting and hypnotic 25-minute track, or so, begins with a wonderful dark atmosphere worthy of horror movies in black and white. A wave of his stretches his strange musicality that sways between a fallen orchestral movement or a pure and simple possession of the recorder. Gradually it gets transformed into a melodious line that screws an earworm in this setting always close to the borders of the unknown. A sonorous fauna is surrounding this musical ritornello. Flirting between psychedelia and cosmic electronic, she even manages to carve another line of more tortuous melody that leads this laborious introduction to the point of 9 minutes. Third Rock is preparing its rhythmic migration with a line of sustained sequenced pulsations and another random line that evaporates in a much more electronic evolution. The guitar installs a third line of rhythmic loops with riffs that are more melodious than in the first two titles of ZEITGEIST. The drums arrive around the twelfth minute. And their heavy and slow strikes structure a mid-tempo attracted to the slower side, allowing a deployment of an armada of tones and effects that fattens the musical mass of Third Rock whose visions of Krautrock, progressive rock and electronic become a perfect symbiosis. And this never put aside or throw shadow to this slow and zigzagging melodious approach that has a touch of oriental dance from the 70’s. One can easily makes a fair comparison between some of Third Rock‘s perfumes and those of Iron Butterfly‘s psy rock. A very solid track that justifies its whole 25 minutes and which concludes another nice album from Son Of Ohm to whom at any times one can’t make a bad criticism. If not that he seems too comfortable in his comfort zone …
Sylvain Lupari (July 30th, 2019) ***¾
synthsequences.com

Zeitgeist
Leonardo is one of those highly underrated musicians of our time, you hear his music and it unhinges your jaw from your face and then you realize, wow, this guy is frickin talented! Interestingly enough, he is also very humble. This latest release pushes through boundaries of psychedelic brilliance! I cant decide which was more impressive, the keys of the guitars, however, you mix them together, it is just orgasmic in my opinion!!!! The artwork as usual is really cool and trippy! This guy is so very talented and for the record, everything he does has the highest depth! There are three songs on this release, each one more diverse and beautiful than the next! If you have not heard of this guy, get on his site and just buy everything you can find!
Shane Beck

Review: Son Of Ohm – Zeitgeist (Eigen Beheer, 2019) (Psychedelisch / Elektronisch / Krautrock)
Door Carry Munter New Underground Music

Op 15 juni 2019 verscheen zijn album “Zeitgeist”, dat 3 lange nummers bevat en start met “Telefunken Baby”, waarin Son Of Ohm een fantastische uptempo mix maakt van  krautrock, psychedelische en elektronische rock, die in een terugkerend ritme gespeeld wordt, dat een hypnotiserende werking op me heeft.
In “Endlos” schotelt hij me opnieuw een geweldig swingend nummer voor, waarin een licht hypnotiserend terugkerend ritme zit en houdt me daarmee in een lichte trance en in dit nummer maakt hij een elektronische mix van krautrock, psychedelische en progressieve rock.
Als laatste volgt “Third Rock” en hierin begint Son Of Ohm zeer psychedelisch, om langzaam over te schakelen en er een eentonig terugkerend ritme aan toe te voegen, dat in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld wordt, om er na enkele minuten een Oosterse tintje aan te geven, spacerock invloeden in te verwerken en over te schakelen naar een hoger tempo, waarin een mix zit van spacerock, psychedelische muziek en krautrock, dat halverwege nog iets meer snelheid krijgt, waardoor de muziek begint te swingen.

“Zeitgeist” van Son Of Ohm is, net als voorgaande uitgaves, een schitterend album en deze keer heeft hij het album een meer psychedelische uitstraling mee gegeven en ik kan elke liefhebber van psychedelische muziek, krautrock en elektronische rock deze schijf dan ook zeer aanbevelen.(luister naar dit album via de bandcamp link onder de recensie) ****1/2

SON OF OHM: Paradigma (2019)

“Filled with perfumes of analog tones and with psychedelic vibes, Paradigma is another fine album from Son of Ohm who never stops to amaze with its sweet motorik beats”

1 Algorhythms 10:10
2 Cosmic Revival I 1:25
3 Pixies 11:49
4 Cosmic Revival II 1:38
5 Caravanserai 10:26
6 Cosmic Revival III 1:10

7 Spirit Flash 12:19

Son of Ohm (DDL 48:47)(Analog EM with a bit of Krautrock)

Son of Ohm comes back to fill our ears with this good mix of Krautrock and Electronic in a 5th album called PARADIGMA. Involved in his projects from A to Z, Leonardo Wijma also draws these nice front artworks that still have a psychedelic aura which is also found in his music. Home product offered on his download platform, PARADIGMA is a well-made album with a pretty decent tone in 24Bits that allows us to discern the instruments used, although with EM we are sure of nothing! This last album of Son of Ohm offers a route of charms that we must collected as the 4 long titles are running. They deploy structures of ambient rhythms with a different approach between each. Structures that are in connection with the 3 other ones. In this new adventure, the one that was once Leonardo offers 7 structures, all well balanced at the level of length, which are linked in a mosaic filled with the vintage years’ perfumes, with charming organic and cosmic tones whose pulsating rhythms create an addiction that we satisfy by discovering a little more the universes of Leonardo Wijma.
Algorhythms” doesn’t waste time before reaching the inexorable border where psybient, krautrock and EM coexist with all their discordant charms. A seductive organic tone from the sequencer forges some ample oscillations which make stumble a first line of rhythm in a burning rivulet of arpeggios vibrating of their strong static oscillations. A wave of mist covers this fascinating mesh. Bass sequences roll in loops in the background, while percussive elements hobble like wooden shoes a little drunk. A good bass runs 3 and 4 creeping notes and the guitar throws its kaleidoscopic circles. The circles turn into small solos and the effects are turning into the pace of a sequencer, whereas the rhythm of “Algorhythms” becomes a good retro Berlin School with a Mellotron and its perfumes of flutes. Are these sequences or riffs? This is one of the many charms of the world of Son of Ohm where everything can take the colors of his composer who never hesitates to show his great respect for the whirling and repetitive loops of Manuel Göttsching. The rhythm disjointed, like a spasmodic skeleton, attached to percussive sequences, the flute and its piercing songs, the breezes of guitar, and the waves of mist from a synth and of its astral threats; Leonardo Wijma balances a first title that requires a great exercise to our eardrums as the tones and their colors try to outwit two ears that should only focus on the listening. But it doesn’t matter, “Algorhythms” puts us in confidence with an EM whose sonorous perfumes go back as far as the good period of Ashra, the first Klaus Schulze albums and the innovations on sequencers by Baumann & Franke. PARADIGMA proposes 4 long titles interspersed by 3 very short which are brief episodes based on the old cosmico-ambiant Berlin School. “Cosmic Revival I” thus presents a synth which illuminates the stars with a very Ashra sound on bass pulsations/sequences put in an ambient rhythm mode. “Pixies” gets grafting while embracing the remain of astral ashes. The rhythm is always ambient with a series of loops braided by a fusion of guitar and synth that hypnotically wave on the strata of a vampiric bass line. A sequencer invites itself to this sweet magnetizing trance by releasing keys whose diverging tonal colors go very well with this cosmic decoration. A rhythmic disorder settles down with the sweeping stubborn reverberant waves, causing “Pixies” to extinction. Its last breaths are from a very Klaus Hoffmann-Hoock guitar and sail towards the ambient and pulsating rhythm of “Cosmic Revival II” which proposes more seraphic songs of astral flutes than in “Cosmic Revival I“.
This short moment prepares the arrival of the very good “Caravanserai“. A title that one hooks onto from the first listen. The rhythm is quiet and pulses through nice harmonies, tinted with Arabic perfumes, and an organ which benefits from the seraphic sweetness of the sequencer. Guitar riffs fall, awakening synth pads that hatch with an iridescent color. The guitar produces riffs in series, while the setting intensifies its preference for psychedelia. Reverberation waves follow the evolution of the riffs which also receive the support of the sequencer. A great motorik beat is getting on, bringing “Caravanserai” on a hypnosis track where the light Arab perfumes take all the place by good harmonious solos of synth (or guitar) in mode 70’s. A very good passage that returns to its bed of moods and rhythmic hesitations of its opening. The keyboard and the organ are small wonders in this transitional phase where guitar riffs become support elements. “Cosmic Revival III” hovers in cosmic atmospheres of the analog time, with also some organic threads (like gurgles of amphibians). The very powerful “Spirit Flash” arrives then in our eardrums! From the last breaths and breezes of “Cosmic Revival III” emerges another reverb wave from which a plethora of strange tones emerge. A jerky rhythm, a bit nasal flute, deploys its orchestral effects in a sort of cemetery garnished of muted knocks and chants of ectoplasms. Little by little, the rhythm feeds on vivacity when the dull blows become frank blows sounding like hooves on concrete. This delightfully bewitching rhythm bears this series of riffs became very melodious, while the roaring organ layers spread sound carpets which look (or sound) like the different paths in a columbarium. The winds howl timidly, carried away by these funereal chants of a Mellotron (or organ) which rooted the analog approach of the 4 long musical sites of PARADIGMA.
A very beautiful album from Son of Ohm, PARADIGMA is got to be added to a discography full of very good albums from the Netherlands musician. For a little that we love these charms of an EM drenched in psybient and animated with motorik rhythms for Zombies marinated in THC, this album is a necessity. Like all the albums of Son Of Ohm by the way! Simply very good!
Sylvain Lupari (April 19th, 2019) ****
synth&sequences.com

Review: Son Of Ohm – Paradigma

Door Carry Munter New Underground Music

….en half jaar later heeft hij alweer een opvolger hiervan, getiteld “Paradigma”, dat 7 nummers bevat en nog vermeldbaar is, dat hij, net als bij zijn vorige albums, het hoes ontwerp weer zelf heeft gemaakt.

Het album start met “Algorhythms”, een iets meer dan 10 minuten durend elektronisch stuk krautrock met een licht hypnotiserend ritme, dat tegen het einde iets rustiger wordt en over loopt in het korte “Cosmic Revival”, een rustig eentonig hypnotiserend klinkend nummer en ook dat gaat verder in het volgende nummer, dat “Pixies” heet en daarin speelt Son Of Ohm een schitterend nummer, dat ruimtelijke invloeden heeft en opnieuw een licht hypnotiserend eentonig ritme bevat.
Dan volgt er weer een korte overgang naar het volgende lange nummer getiteld “Cosmic Revival II” en hierin hoor ik hem een nogmaals een licht hypnotiserend werkje spelen, waarna hij vervolgd met “Caravanserai”, een heerlijk swingend Oosters getint nummer, waar een mysterieus ritme in zit, dat verandert in een melodisch, klassiek aandoend stuk.
In “Cosmic Revival III” speelt hij een psychedelisch kort nummer en in “Spirit Flash” laat Son Of Ohm me opnieuw genieten van een fantastisch stuk krautrock, dat in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld wordt en ruimtelijke invloeden heeft, waarbij het ritme licht hypnotiserend klinkt.

“Paradigma” van Son Of Ohm is een verrukkelijke elektronische schijf, die vol hypnotiserende nummers staat, waarbij krautrock een grote rol speelt en ik kan deze CD dan ook zeer aanraden aan elke liefhebber, die van deze muzieksoorten houdt.

iO Pages


Paradigma:
I have raved about Leonardo in the past and will continue to do so again. This release had a very heavy Ash Ra Tempel feel to it, which I already know is huge praise to someone who already digs the band! There was also some Klaus Schulze elements that sent chills up my spine. I could go on enough about the music of Leonardo Soundweaver, such class and sheet style!!!!! I am honored to be his friend and feel the music as it enters me and gives me healing hugs.
Shane Beck

SON OF OHM: Electronic Muse (2018)
“Electronic Muse isn’t an easy ambient album to tame, but the aficionados of the first years of the ambient Berlin School style should however be pleased by it”

1 Electronic Muse Part I 16:26
2 Electronic Muse Part II 9:16
3 Electronic Muse Part III 16:08
4 Electronic Muse Part IV 11:37
Son of Ohm Music (DDL 53:27)
(Vintage Berlin School)

Do you remember Adelbert Von Deyen? Of his first albums where the ambient rhythms used to rose and tumbled down dunes of sounds soaked in ether? It’s a little, very much, the ambiances of the second album of Son of Ohm to be have been released in 2018. A bit like Blackbirds, “Electronic Muse” was conceived in spontaneity. If the idea of a tone embalmed of iodine and ether and of a specific flow germinated in the head of Leonardo Soundweaver for a long time, it’s only after having designed this exact synth patch that Son of Ohm undertook the writing and recording of his 4th album which is available only in downloadable format. One week was enough for the mix, the effects of gliss overdubs and mastering so that in the end “Electronic Muse” offers a texture worthy of a good old ambient Berlin School.
Distortion waves and electronic chirps illuminate the route of organ pads which open the ambient procession of “Electronic Muse Part I”. We are in the cradle of the Berlin School of the Blackdance and the New Age of Earth years with this mist of ether that advances as the title eats the seconds of its time. Slow to develop, “Electronic Muse Part I” is like a sonic bird raptor that whirls in the loops of its circles while the rhythmic structure sculpts this ambient pace where the sequences go up and down an invisible staircase. The sweep of the layers leads us into a voracious whirlwind and the effects of distortions tear down this mesh of rhythm and euthanasiatic moods with jerky jolts which flirt with the psychedelic approaches of that era. The second part of the title offers a more musical approach with a more fluid rhythm and more disparate sound effects montage. “Electronic Muse Part II” advances on hot breezes before colliding with a first wall of very reactive sound effects. Circles, like kaleidoscopic effects, spin with increased velocity whereas jingles of woods are dancing tap-dancing in an environment blown by sounds and steams of sound machinery. At first undisciplined, these clacking of wood find a din cohesion in a storm of spheroidal elements as much disturbing as the unleashing of the winds and the effects of this title purely of ambiances … non-meditative. “Electronic Muse Part III” is the most animated title in “Electronic Muse”. Its opening is drinking of the percussive ambiences and effects of “Part II”. A delightful movement of the sequencer emerges from a convulsive tap dance, straightening “Part II” in a beautiful electronic texture which flows between stereo effects of distortions as well as parasitic and lunar sounds in a structure as musical as the 2nd part of “Part I”. “Electronic Muse Part IV” finishes this last opus of Son of Ohm with a nice ambient structure without noises but all in emotions with a cloud of layers to the paradisiacal colors.
I must admit that the learning of “Electronic Muse” is not done smoothly at the level of the eardrums. The sound effects as well as these synth and organs pads that flicker like flames too drenched with alcohol require greater musical curiosity, but should however please the aficionados of this time of Manuel Göttsching and Klaus Schulze first albums, without forgetting the nebulous world of Adelbert Von Deyen. Pure ambient Berlin School that follows Blackbirds very closely! That’s what is waiting for you with this latest Son of Ohm’s album; “Electronic Muse”.
Sylvain Lupari, synth&sequences.com  (October 3rd, 2018) ***

Review: Son Of Ohm – Electronic Muse

Door Carry Munter New Underground Music

Het album start met “Part I”, dat in een rustig tempo gespeeld wordt en een enigszins trieste ondertoon bevat, totdat Son Of Ohm besluit het roer om te gooien  en over te schakelen op het maken van een schitterend stuk licht hypnotiserende krautrock, dat geïnspireerd is door de muziek van onder andere: Tangerine Dream en Klaus Schulze.
Dit nummer wordt gevolgd door “Part II”, dat zwaar begint en na enkele minuten verandert in een prachtig ruimtelijk psychedelisch nummer, dat in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld wordt.(luister naar dit nummer via de bandcamp link onder de recensie)
In “Part III” laat Son Of Ohm me genieten van een rustig startend psychedelisch nummer, dat na korte tijd van ritme wisselt en hij een fantastisch krautrock nummer ten gehore brengt, waarin het tempo omhoog gaat en er een hypnotiserend ritme aan toegevoegd wordt, dat tevens ruimtelijke invloeden bevat.(luister naar dit nummer via de youtube link onder de recensie)
Het laatste nummer, “Part IV” begint weer zwaar, om over te gaan in verrukkelijke hemelse klanken, die in een vrij rustig tempo gespeeld worden, me aan de new age muziek van Deuter doen denken en me tot rust brengen.

“Electronic Muse” van Son Of Ohm bevat 4 geweldige elektronische nummers, waarmee hij me van begin tot einde in de ban van zijn muziek heeft gehouden en ik kan deze schijf dan ook sterk aanraden, aan een ieder, die van elektronische muziek en krautrock houdt. ****1/2

IO Pages

SON OF OHM: Blackbirds (2018)
“Blackbirds is the perfect example of how EM was made in the early 70’s”

1 Morning Dew 11:47
2 Blackbirds 27:52
3 Velvet Sky 10:13
Son of Ohm Music (DDL/CD-r 50:00)
(Early Berlin School)

A sound effect inspired by the sound of a jet airplane torturing the firmament opens the first seconds of “Morning Dew”. The hesitant movement of a sequencer which makes a key wandering around emerges slowly and gains fluidity, while the reactor propulsions stretch their effects which become layers trapped in a distress approach. Hypnotic and magnetizing, the gamboling rhythm turns into a ritornello as rhythmic as harmonic which hops in a sound fauna speckled by stigmatized long mechanical sighs. The rout of the sober movement is organized around the 4th minute while dozens of marbles tinkle on an ill-fitting conveyor. Despite this rain of unruly rhythmic marbles, the rhythm is still as primary with the same movement which now flows under good, well-tuned synth solos and the distortions of an old organ which capture “Morning Dew” in a retro approach. Composed in a gust of wind, for the needs of the Electric Spectrum Experience held at the end of this last June 2018 Groningen, “Blackbirds” is an album which breathes this promiscuity between the basic instruments that carved a minimalist EM bare of complexity in its long sonic journeys. As in the Syrinx and Astronaut albums, Son of Ohm’s music clings to the Berlin School model of the early 70’s with minimalist rhythmic structures which roll in loops and serve as a bed for a cloud of experimentations from synths and organs. Moreover, the first two titles were recorded live in Leonardo Wijma’s studio, we can hear the murmurs of blackbirds in the title track, reflecting this close creative collaboration between the musician and his instruments.
The title track is a good example. It plunges us into the ethereal world of Klaus Schulze with organ pads which drift between electronic effects and these boosted winds which propel a movement of linear rhythm after the point of 6 minutes. The sequencer deploys a structure which lays down long harmonic zigzag under nice electronic effects of the analog years. The rhythm is fluid and bypasses those charming effects which stick to it, some from Kraftwerk in Autobhan. Hypnotic and catchy, “Blackbirds” is a real tribute to the old Berlin School. The rhythm shifts to a fluidity around 13 minutes with guitar riffs, helping to maintain the basis of this rhythmic structure. Good synth solos follow the bends of the organ pads while the guitar accentuates its presence with such good solos, awakening reminiscences of Ashra and adding a touch of psychedelism to this title which draws its inspirations from the songs of the blackbirds during its genesis. Composed in 2016 with a similar approach, “Velvet Sky” is an ambient track worthy of the belle époque. The mesmerizing structure is sculpted on oscillating loops of low frequencies that roll on a long minimalist course where whistle a panoply of sound effects which embrace the borders of psychedelism and occultism.
Simple and minimalist, we can’t avoid the many traps of bewitchment that seizes our ears while listening to “Blackbirds”. In the end, this is the perfect example of how EM was made in the early 70’s. With equipment reduced to a minimum, Son of Ohm shapes a music built to be played in close connection with the listener, both in our living room and/or in concert. At this level, “Blackbirds” flows equally well with or without headphones. A beautiful album which will seduce the fans of the first works of Ashra Tempel and Klaus Schulze, whose improvisation sessions in the early 70’s still make their fans talking about…some 50 years later.
Sylvain Lupari, synth&sequences.com (July 15, 2018)
****

Review: Son Of Ohm – Blackbirds

Door Carry Munter New Underground Music

….ook maakte hij, net als bij vorige uitgaven, het prachtige hoes ontwerp weer zelf en dat deed hij eveneens voor het CD-R album “Blackbirds” dat in juli 2018 via SynthMusicDirect verscheen.

Het album bevat slechts 3 nummers, waarvan “Morning Dew” het eerste is en daarin hoor ik Son Of Ohm een schitterend krautrock nummer spelen, dat een hypnotiserend terugkerend ritme heeft, waar hij zijn duistere elektronische klanken omheen bouwt, zodat ik van begin tot einde in de ban van zijn muziek raak.
In het titelnummer “Blackbirds” laat hij me bijna 28 minuten genieten van een afwisselend nummer, dat de eerste 6 minuten in een rustig tempo gespeeld wordt, waarbij de muziek melodisch is en invloeden uit de Andes heeft en vervolgens over gaat in een heerlijk stuk hypnotiserende krautrock, waar invloeden van jaren 70 bands als Tangerine Dream en Klaus Schulze sterk naar voren komen, waarna het nummer met rustige klanken wordt afgesloten.(luister naar dit nummer via de youtube link onder de recensie)
Het laatste nummer heet “Velvet Sky” en daarin schotelt hij me opnieuw een fantastisch elektronisch nummer voor, waarin een terugkerend ritme zit, dat hypnotiserend op me werkt en ik in een lichte trance kom.

Met zijn album “Blackbirds” heeft Son Of Ohm me ook deze keer weer weten te boeien, door me van begin tot einde in een bepaalde trance te brengen, waardoor ik volledig in de ban van zijn schitterende muziek was en ik kan iedere liefhebber van krautrock, elektronische muziek en trance, deze schijf dan ook ten zeerste aanraden. ****1/2

SON OF OHM: Astronaut (2017)
“If you are into a true psychedelic ambient vibe of the vintage years, this one’s for you!”

1 The Brain Connection 7:49
2 Floating 11:25
3 Intermission 8:35
4 Time Machine 7:49
5 Spaceman 10:23
6 Hypnosis 13:48
Son of Ohm Music (DDL 59:52)
(Psychedelic ambient and Space Rock)

It’s following the reviews I wrote about Sula Bassana music that I was put in contact with Son of Ohm. According to the information which was given to me, “Astronaut”, 2nd opus of Son of Ohm would meet these criteria of seduction which had transported me during my listening and my chronicles of the albums The Ape Regards His Tail and Organ Accumulator / Disappear. But first of all, who is Son of Ohm? It’s a Dutch musician, Holland became a real arboretum of artists propelled by the Kosmik Musik or the Berlin School styles, who is very active on the musical scene since the end of the 90’s. Very attracted by a psychedelic approach, Leonardo Wijma is inspired by a whole range of artists who go from Ash Ra Temple to Led Zeppelin by way of Gong (Steve Hillage) and Hawkwind, without forgetting timeless ones like The Beatles, Bowie, Zappa, Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze to name only those. And it’s under various names (Leonardo Soundweaver, Astral Son and Son of Ohm) that the musician of Groningen gathers a public as much diversified as his styles which go from cosmic music to psychedelic music, Krautrock and a more experimental kind as well as the minimalist sequenced model of Ashra. In brief, a pallet of styles that we can meet in one of his albums, like this one. A chord of a grave tone spreads its fathomless shadow at the same time as a stroboscopic wave spins in order to weave the floating rhythm and gently jerky of “The Brain Connection”. Subtly, the dark malaisante shadow is transformed into an abstruse melody which is bombarded by a sequencer and its minimalist mode into a cosmic decoration of the vintage years, while a line of bass pulsations crumbles some splendid percussive effects. Little by little, the rhythmic skeleton scatters its resources to isolate only a crystal clear sequence which skips shyly in a soundscape closer of oblivion with layers of lugubrious organs which transform their platonic tunes into a line a little more acute. There are enough elements of seduction in this title to push a little farther my discovery of Son of Ohm’s universe. You should not trust the title of “Floating” to judge of its contents. Far from being floating, the title approaches our ears with extraterrestrial organic effects which grasps a good structure which is livened up by a Krautrock approach of the good years of Ash Ra Tempel. Two lines of rhythm contiguous give a rhythmic life while separating their approaches among which one which aims to be more harmonious while the other line is a bass one which is more in mode minimalist beat. Layers, keyboard riffs and effects add a Space Rock dimension to this track which espouses a bit the finale of “The Brain Connection”. To my ears, the slow and very hypnotic rhythm of “Intermission” is the small jewel of “Astronaut”. Very close of Richard Pinhas’ territories in his Iceland to L’Ethique era, the rhythm is forged in a meshing of sequence moiré which sparkle and skip in a structure crawling and speckled of splendid nuances in its progression. The melody, weaved in the harmonies of a synth in mode nostalgia, is as much mesmerizing as its rhythmic skeleton and its soundscape as well as the percussive effects which will blow your ears away. Splendid!
In its rhythmic structure, just as much minimalist and charmingly reminiscent of Ash Ra Tempel’s vintages years, “Time Machine” is not outdone with its rhythmic structure charmingly raised on a movement of guitar loops a la Manuel Göttsching which roll and wave in a fascinating esoteric landscape with juicy percussive effects which are absolutely attractive. But “Intermission” throws at it too much shadow. That’s says quite a lot about the depth and the wealth of this title. Also well settled on loops of sequences and oscillating waves which structure an ambient rhythmic approach, “Spaceman” brings us to a degree of tension which had been contained up to here in the first 4 tracks of “Astronaut”. It’s chords from a dark keyboard which throw this aura while layers and surrounding noises satiate our listening by a touch of psychedelism set up in a shape of sound psychosis. Intense and icy, “Spaceman” reflects particularly well the idea behind its title! “Hypnosis” is a purely an ambient title. Modulations of waves push effects of jerk which float with alternate impulses in a dense veil weaved in fruits of the vapors from some soft drugs. This is a superb and a true vintage psybient!
As first contact, I have adored the music of “Astronaut” which is a very interesting album in a modern society which too often forgets its past. The music is nostalgic but is never outmoded by the new technologies which facilitate now the art to create electronic music. Manuel Göttsching’s influences and this Space Rock a la Ash Ra Tempel are well felt here but they are never an obstacle to the creativity of Son of Ohm. I look forward to discovering Syrinx now!
Sylvain Lupari, Synth & Sequences (October 24th, 2017)
****

Review: Son Of Ohm – Astronaut

Door Carry Munter New Underground Music

“Astronaut”, dat 6 vrij lange nummers, inclusief een bonus nummer bevat, start met “The Brain Connection” en daarin hoor ik Son Of Ohm een schitterend, vrij zwaar, dreigend, ruimtelijk klinkend elektronisch nummer spelen, dat een licht hypnotiserend ritme heeft en halverwege verandert in een luchtiger stuk spacerock, dat in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld wordt.
Daarna schotelt hij me “Floating” voor en krijg ik een fantastisch dansbaar hypnotiserende krautrock te horen, waarmee hij me in een liche trance brengt (luister naar dit nummer via de youtube link onder de recensie) en dit wordt gevolgd door “Intermission”, een lekker in het gehoor klinkend krautrock nummer, waarin een terugkerend ritme voor een licht hypnotiserend effect zorgt en invloeden van Klaus Schulze hoorbaar zijn.
In “Time Machine” gaat Son Of Ohm verder met het maken van zijn verrukkelijke krautrock en krijg ik opnieuw een heerlijk licht hypnotiserend nummer voorgezet, waarbij stil zitten geen optie is en in “Spaceman” laat hij me nogmaals genieten van zo’n geweldig stuk hypnotiserende krautrock.
Het bonus nummer heet “Hypnosis” en daarin krijg ik een mix van elektronische psychedelische muziek en Oosterse invloeden te horen, die in een vrij rustig tempo gespeeld wordt.

Son Of Ohm heeft me met “Astronaut” van begin tot einde in de ban van zijn fantastische elektronische muziek weten te houden en ik kan dit album dan ook ten zeerste aanraden aan hen, die van ruimtelijke muziek en krautrock houden. ****1/2


Son of Ohm – Astronaut: Release 28.09.2017

Son Of Ohm ist Leonardo (Soundweaver) aus Groningen in den Niederlanden, das Land, das für seine Vorliebe für elektronische Musik weitläufig bekannt ist und dem schon sehr viele hochkarätige Talente im Stil der Berliner Schule und der kosmischen Musik entsprungen sind. Leonardo dürfte vielen auch durch sein Projekt Astral Son, dessen Alben über Sulatron Records vertrieben werden, bekannt sein. Nach Syrinx aus dem Spätjahr 2015 überraschte er uns am 28. September mit seinem zweiten Album Astronaut, das genau wie das eben genannte Vorgängeralbum auf seiner Bandcamp-Seite https://sonofohm.bandcamp.com begutachtet und bei Gefallen zu einem fairen Preis heruntergeladen werden kann. Außerdem gibt es das Album mit einem Bonus-Track auf CD. Alles dazu findet Ihr auf seiner Homepage http://www.sonofohm.com.

Krautansätze mit einer gehörigen Portion an psychedelischen Einflüssen, erzeugt mit Synthesizern, Vintage-Orgel, Elektro-Space-Gitarre und verschiedenen anderen Instrumenten. Sehr kosmisch und spacig, so geht es in seinen verträumten Melodien zu, und der Einfluss der deutschen elektronisch-experimentellen Musik der 70er Jahre lässt sich kaum leugnen. Da werden Erinnerungen geweckt, und Namen wie Ash Ra Tempel, Tangerine Dream bzw. Klaus Schulze, Edgar Froese, Manuel Göttsching usw. – oder pauschaler gesagt: Vieles was uns die damaligen Label Brain und Ohr zu bieten hatten – fallen einen spontan dazu ein. 

Das aus fünf Titeln (plus einem Bonus-Track auf der CD) zwischen sieben und vierzehn Minuten bestehende Album ist ein symphonisches Gesamt-Meisterwerk, bei dem vom Flow her alles perfekt aufeinander abgestimmt ist, und gerade diese Harmonie, bei der alles zu einen einzigen, facettenreichen aber gradlinigen Klangteppich verwebt ist, das ist das, was nicht nur mich fasziniert, sondern auch viele andere Befürworter in der EM-Szene finden wird. Lehnt euch zurück, vergesst für eine Weile jegliches Raum- und Zeitgefühl und taucht ein in die unendlichen Weiten unseres Universums – und ihr werdet viel altbewährtes wiederentdecken, gepaart mit neuen Komponenten, deren Kreativität keine Grenzen gesetzt sind.
Harald Gramberg, 30.10.2017 Hippiesland.de


SON OF OHM Astronaut (eigen beheer)
#psychedelische elektronische muziek/space

Achter Son Of Ohm bevindt zich de Nederlandse musicus Leonardo Soundweaver. We kennen hem onder meer van de Krautrock/spacerockband Astral Son. In iO Pages 133 besprak ik het album Syrinx. Deze muziek was geënt op de begintijd van de Berlijnse School en leek op de muziek van Ashra Tempel/Ashra en Manuel Göttsching. Op Astronaut, verkrijgbaar als download en cdr, gaat het niet zo zeer om de invloeden van artiesten. Het album ontstond vanuit de instrumenten die Leonardo tot zijn beschikking heeft, zoals een Moog synthesizer. Dit levert afwisselende en interessante muziek op met een fraai pallet aan geluiden en sferen. Het album opent in The Brain Connection kalm en licht ritmisch met een gave bastoon. Het tweede deel is als spacemuziek en kent de sound van een glissando gitaar, bekend van onder meer Gong en Steve Hillage. Floating vind ik het sterkste stuk: het bevat een prachtige zweverige arpeggio en zachte sequences die langzaam voller worden. Dit, verzegeld door een lekkere solo op synth, verwijzen mij naar een album als New Age Of Earth van Ashra. Dit is bijzonder knap gedaan. In Intermission horen we een voorzichtig elektronisch ritme. Bands als Cluster of Harmonium laten zich hier groeten. De sequencer speelt weer een belangrijke rol in Time Machine. Hierna is er ruimte voor orgel en een licht dreigende sfeer in Spaceman. Hypnosis, met fijne effecten, is bijna een ambientstuk. Wat ik sterk vind aan de Leonardo’s muziek, is dat hij het niet volstopt maar het houdt bij een betrekkelijke eenvoud en dat vind ik een bepaalde charme hebben. Er zit meer muziek aan te komen van Son Of Ohm. Ik kijk er naar uit.

©2017 Paul Rijkens, iO Pages-tijdschrift over progressieve rockmuziek



SON OF OHM: Syrinx (2015)
“Syrinx proposes a journey in the 70’s with nice structures which mix the Berlin & French Schools with an always pleasant psychedelic vibe”

1 Legend 8:33
2 Syrinx 8:52
3 Crystal 5:06
4 Mount Om 8:05
5 Monkey Mind 7:44
6 Echoes 7:49
Son of Ohm Music (CD-r/DDL 46:11)

(Berlin & French Schools with psychedelic vibes)
Is Astronaut a brief encounter without tomorrows or simply the following of an even more interesting album? The very first album of Son of Ohm, “Syrinx” joins unopposed in this generation of albums appeared too late in the long chessboard of time, but which would have marked a whole generation. Behind a splendid artwork of the psychedelic years, “Syrinx” proposes another journey in the 70’s with a superb 46 minutes distributed well on 6 titles.
A series of guitar riffs pierces the shrill effects of a synth which looks for itself between its approach spectral or cosmic. We would believe to hear a more modern Manuel Göttsching on a psybient never consumed of the vintage years. My ears perceive 2 lines of guitars in this very nice “Legend”, of which one weaves a more harmonious rhythmic approach whereas the other one releases discreet solos which roll in loops around sober percussive jingles. This meshing encroaches its minutes with a good undulating structure when the vibes rise of a tone with a good effect of intensity around the 4th minute. If the rhythm shows with elegance its minimalist finery, the synth spreads very good morphic solos and some good effects which feed the thirst of cosmic psychedelism of my ears. The title-track crumbles a movement of the sequencer with keys which make a strange circular dance. Jarrish winds cross this delicate choreography while percussions and graver chords add so much weight to the pace as intensity in the structure. The rhythm progresses with its continuous jolts which are knotted around a meshing of sequences, organic effects and percussions in an approach always minimalist which is supported by pallets of winds and sound colors which are so much in the domain of cosmic Berlin School than of the Space French School of the Space Art and Zanov years, in particular at the level of its dramatic envelope. “Crystal” proposes a structure of ambient rhythm with a circular movement of the sequencer which is coated by multilayers of winds and of effects of a synth always in mode French School.
“Mount Om” is a good ambient and intense title with large synth layers which land in loops over a shimmering river of sequences moiré. Jean-Michel Jarre’s elements sparkle through these banks of melodious layers and cover an approach which adorns itself of some little more organic elements. Percussive effects arise of these gurgling, amplifying even more the wealth of “Mount Om” which little by little goes out of its apathetic lethargy to propose a structure of rhythm gone up on a bed of pulsations, sequences and very scattered percussions. An intense start, for one finale which is just as much! “Monkey Mind” and its rhythmic paradox is the first title which arouses our eardrums at the first listening of “Syrinx”. A nice pattern of lascivious down-tempo undulates whereas some motorik percussions influence a kind of very sluggish beat. The numerous effects form paradoxical lines to the structures of rhythm while a delicate vampiric melody spreads charms and magnetizing effects. The whole thing is well wrapped in a very cosmic soundscape. This one is very good too! Multiple synth effects, Aeolus and his anger as well as percussive effects take out a line of bass sequences of its hiding place in order to shape this bumpy structure of “Echoes”. The cosmic landscape floods the passive rhythm of lapidary effects while the synth shows its harmonic side with soloing forms which coo in loops. Grave chords as well as chirpings from a synth which is also a snake charmer reroute the oppressive walking of the rhythm towards a more fluid movement among which the effects and the synth sign the influences of Ashra on the music of Son of Ohm.
Available as much in CD-r (on Neu Harmony) as in downloadable format, “Syrinx” is an album as interesting, several of you will find it superior because of the homogeneity, than Astronaut which had literally charmed me hardly one week ago. A prelude? Maybe, but not inevitably because both albums propose different approaches, always bound by a psychedelic vision of the tones, which possess their own charms and things which hang on a big smile on our faces. A very beautiful discovery for those who like a Berliner style of the 70’s, with a nice touch of France, and these sequenced rhythms which try to drill the mystery of the psychedelism.
Sylvain Lupari, Synth & Sequences (October 25th, 2017
) ****¼

Review: Son Of Ohm – Syrinx

Door Carry Munter New Underground Music

Het album start met “Legend” en daarin krijg ik een schitterende hypnotiserende mix van krautrock en spacerock te horen, die bijna 9 minuten duurt en daarbij is stil zitten geen optie (luister naar dit nummer via de youtube link onder de recensie) en deze wordt gevolgd door het titel nummer “Syrinx”, waarin Leonardo me een fantastisch stukje spacerock voorschotelt, dat gemixt mat de krautrock klanken voor een lekker in het gehoor klinkend nummer zorgt, dat in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld wordt en ook hierbij raak ik in de ban van zijn heerlijke muziek, die me aan onder andere Tangerine Dream en Klaus Schulze doet denken.
Daarna laat hij me genieten van “Crystal” en krijg ik opnieuw een geweldig elektronisch nummer voorgezet, dat gevolgd wordt door “Mount Om”, waarin de muziek voorzichtig naar de new age neigt en ik een heerlijk rustig elektronisch nummer te horen krijg, dat me in een staat van rust brengt.
Dan hoor ik “Monkey Mind” en hierin speelt Leonardo een lekker in het gehoor klinkend dansbaar elektronisch nummer, dat lichtelijk symfonisch klinkt en subtiele spacerock invloeden bevat, waarna “Echoes” volgt, dat tevens het laatste nummer van het album is en daarin krijg ik weer zo’n verrukkelijk ruimtelijk elektronisch nummer in de stijl van Klaus Schulze te horen. 

Leonardo heeft me met “Syrinx” een schitterend stuk muziek voorgezet, waarvan ik van begin tot eind heb genoten en ik kan deze CD dan ook van harte aanbevelen aan een ieder, die van synthesizer muziek houdt. ****1/2

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