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 The Giant Illusion - mini review by Eric Ghost

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BruecknerAmbient
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:49 pm    The Giant Illusion - mini review by Eric Ghost Reply with quoteBack to top

"The Giant Illusion - A Compilation" is available now via Bandcamp (Download or 2 CD-r Set), too.

https://michaelbrueckner.bandcamp.com/album/the-giant-illusion-a-compilation

The little booklet (cover and back of it) looks like this - more pictures below:


Image



Originally, this compilation was released just a few weeks ago via the "Free Music Archive" (16455 plays and 4455 downloads by now Very Happy ).

Unlike the version on FMA, the BC download and the CD-r are NOT for free
(but still at a VERY fair price, I think) however contain EXTRA content - a brand new "bonus" track called "Rübezaal", actually 77 min long Shocked ).

The compilation as such features (mostly) ambient tracks which are part of older releases AND two (long, older) tracks previously not contained on any album (but still familiar to some of my long time listeners, as they were used as free "giveaways" on some occasions).
Also, the tracks are partly remastered and mixed in one uninterrupted flow... Cool

For more info, please read the "liner notes" on Bandcamp.

For & about the (still available) free version see here:

http://www.emportal.info/viewtopic.php?t=10500

.

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Last edited by BruecknerAmbient on Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:38 pm; edited 5 times in total

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BruecknerAmbient
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:54 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

More images...

Inside of the little booklet:

Image


Inlay Card / back of CD:

Image


"Main" CD (original compilation = content of the free version)

Image


"Bonus" CD (not contained in free version and all new music)

Image


.

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BruecknerAmbient
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2016 3:50 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Image

Reviewer Michael Hodgson reviewed my recent album "The Giant Illusion" for progarchives.com .

In his - as usually - detailed and eloquent review he says things like:

" (...) it's an evocative assortment of deep-space mystery with fleeting personal and deeply human touches with a distinctly modern sound."

"While it keeps a very contemporary sound, some parts of the opening twenty minutes" [ of CD 2 ] "remind of Steve Hillage's 1979 ambient classic `Rainbow Dome Musik', other moments Tangerine Dream's `Thru Metamorphic Rocks' and fleeting spots nearer the end recall the wisping and bubbling disorientating phasing of the early Klaus Schulze albums. Overall the piece works particularly well as an undemanding and varied background listen, and one that reveals new and exciting little details with every spin."

"This set compliments his earlier 2016 albums nicely (...) and once again admirably showcases the talent, intelligence and great musical variety of Michael Brückner."


Read the full review here:

http://www.progarchives.com/Review.asp?id=1633115

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2016 5:04 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Image

Siggy Zielinski has written a review of "The Giant Illusion" for the prog rock review page "Babyblaue Seiten".

Read the full review (in German) here - or read my (rough) translation of it below! Smile

http://www.babyblaue-seiten.de/album_16093.html#oben

---

"Michael Brückner has entitled this compilation from the year 2016 "The Giant Illusion". Compiled and combined into one multi-part, CD-filling track, it contains pieces from 2004 to 2015, which were mostly available on the numerous albums of the musician. However, the 22 minutes long "Small Steps to the Light" was previously only available on the internet so far, and the 14 minutes of "Return Inside" consist of recombined elements for an album called "Endless Mind Portal". The so-called Bonus CD offers another 77 minute long-track entitled "Rübezaal", which was previously unreleased.

I tend to divide this electronic music roughly into experimental and relaxing tracks. The pieces on "The Giant Illusion", although varied, however remain within the limits of beautiful-spiritual electronics, and to me are of a rather accessible and melodic nature. Perfectly suited to underpin a good mood among for friends of the genre, or to create that mood, if not yet given...
In "Small Steps Towards the Light", Brückner combines compact melodic and rhythmical ideas with a slightly melancholic atmospheric note, almost sounding as if Klaus Schulze had a joined Tangerine Dream in the 80s.

The ensuing pieces of the first CD merge into a pretty dreamy ambient longtrack. In "Tala Magna" and "Salam 'ander" the ambient moods are expanded to elements of world music. Only with the sad piano themes of "Flüchtig" the listener seems to have returned to reality again.

I also want to dedicate some bonus words to the 77 minute bonus track on the additional CD:
Until the 39-minute mark "Rübezaal" offers tastefully performed and slightly modernized music in the tradition of so-called Berlin school, known for example from the Berlin label Manikin. Some people never get enough of that, others may think it's a little predictable. Afterwards, fast rhythms take over the leading role, which without the inspiration of Kraftwerk might sound somewhat different. (..as a sequel of "Tour de France" we now get "Rübezaal's Travels"). The following passages of the longtrack show Brückner wandering on rather independentl modern electronic paths, without relying too much on familiar models. Well, a certain proximity to the indestructible "Berlin school" may also be found here. (In the end I like the bonus CD better than the main CD).

Friends of electronic music can immerse themselves in the harmonious moods of "The Giant Illusion", at best with a moderate alcoholic beverage of their choice."


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BruecknerAmbient
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:26 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

JAY! Very Happy Trusty Franco-Canadian EM reviewer Sylvain Lupari just surprised me with reviewing "The Giant Illusion" for his online magazine(s) "Synth&Sequences" (and "Guts of Darkness") - both in English and Frenc.

Sylvain says:

"Composed between 2004 and 2015, this fascinating compilation of Michael Brückner confirms all the talent and the genius of the one of which the very eclectic universe can easily be compared with the one of Steve Roach so much the sonic range covers wide.

And to prove it, the friendly German synthesist has concocted us an unusual compilation, to say the least, by grafting more than 10 titles from various eras and glued them in a continual mosaic where everything seems to get congeal in a stunning realism. The two longest tracks on CD were, until today, unpublished as well as the very long "Rübezaal" that Michael Brückner has composed for “The Giant Illusion”.


...and closes his observations:

"(...) a movement of vintage sequences, progresses towards the various phases of EM and between some well imagined and very well fed atmospheric moments.

In brief, a long title where Schulze and Roach are behind Michael Brückner's shoulders to blow him the best advices. The magic and the symbiosis here are unequivocal. "Rübezaal" rewards the one who tames the bends and bounces, the lengths and permutations in order to be totally enthralled some listenings farther. Just like the majority of the works that Michael Brückner presents here in spare parts on “The Giant Illusion”.

Let yourself be tempted by this sweet and crazy excursion in the universe of an artist who will always know how to please you. That, it’s guaranteed!"


Read his full in-depth review here:

http://synthsequences.blogspot.de/2017/03/michael-bruckner-giant-illusion-2016.html

.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:29 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Congrats on the favorable review!

Personally I find the reviews on Synth & Sequences hard, if not impossible, to read. Sylvain has never heard of white space and his reviews are always one big blur of text, quite often in very poor English too. I know English is not his native language, but his text quite often looks if it's coming straight from Google Translate (or worse).

Anyway, back on topic. Wink

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BruecknerAmbient
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:24 am    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

« VCO1 » wrote:
Congrats on the favorable review!


Thanks. A little applause is always uplifting... Wink

« VCO1 » wrote:
Personally I find the reviews on Synth & Sequences hard, if not impossible, to read. Sylvain has never heard of white space and his reviews are always one big blur of text, quite often in very poor English too. I know English is not his native language, but his text quite often looks if it's coming straight from Google Translate (or worse).


Well - it's really a bit demanding in a way; but once I concentrate hard enough to follow Sylvain's flow of images, I usually kind of enjoy it - it's a little bit like listening to math rock or Stravinsky in that...

Laughing

I actually think he really originally writes the reviews in French, and I guess the French versions might be much more concise (unfortunately my knowledge of French is to small too judge that, though...).

However, even with the given flaws, he's one of the reviewers I like - because he is quite passionate and his descriptions are always detailed and engaging, sometimes (the clumsy translation aside) even quite poetic...

Plus: his page has about one Million clicks, so some folks seem to show up there from time to time and actually read those reviews (flaws or not) - that's quite a good reason for any musician to be reviewed there, I guess... Twisted Evil

Wink

And it has to be stated that he's a very friendly person, too. Did You know, btw. that he is chronically ill and suffers from phases of intense pain since years...? Two (admittedly unrelated) things that kind of make me hesitate to judge the possible shortcomings of his reviews too hard....

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:53 am    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
Well - it's really a bit demanding in a way; but once I concentrate hard enough to follow Sylvain's flow of images, I usually kind of enjoy it - it's a little bit like listening to math rock or Stravinsky in that...

Nice comparison. Although I think I prefer Stravinsky anytime. Wink

Quote:
Plus: his page has about one Million clicks, so some folks seem to show up there from time to time and actually read those reviews (flaws or not) - that's quite a good reason for any musician to be reviewed there, I guess... Twisted Evil

I'm one of those million. But the fact that I click doesn't mean that I'm actually reading what's on the page. I mainly use his page to get up to date about releases. I also noticed that his taste isn't mine. Which isn't a bad thing for reviews. It just means that if he likes it, I probably won't and vice versa. Wink

Quote:
And it has to be stated that he's a very friendly person, too. Did You know, btw. that he is chronically ill and suffers from phases of intense pain since years...? Two (admittedly unrelated) things that kind of make me hesitate to judge the possible shortcomings of his reviews too hard....

Nope, I didn't know that and I'm sincerely sorry to hear that. It's unrelated in a way - as you say - to the way he writes (or formats his text actually, 'cause a litlle bit of white space would already do wonders), but it sure helps to put everything in perspective.

And again, let's go back on topic. Which is your album. Smile

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 12:37 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

[quote="VCO1"]
Quote:
Nice comparison. Although I think I prefer Stravinsky anytime. Wink


Probably that's the same for me, then again I admit that I compared apples with peas maybe; and after all, there are not that many reviewers of that kind of EM around anymore, I guess...

Quote:
I'm one of those million. But the fact that I click doesn't mean that I'm actually reading what's on the page. (...) I also noticed that his taste isn't mine. Which isn't a bad thing for reviews. It just means that if he likes it, I probably won't and vice versa. Wink


Hm, I wonder how You know about his taste if You don't read the reviews... Wink

Quote:
Nope, I didn't know that and I'm sincerely sorry to hear that. It's unrelated in a way - as you say - to the way he writes (or formats his text actually, 'cause a litlle bit of white space would already do wonders), but it sure helps to put everything in perspective.


I'll try to forward Your suggestions to him if I have a chance to (from time to time, I chat with him on FB but then again not that often...).
Of course, it makes sense.

Not sure if he'll take it to heart though, as he announced recently that he planned to retire from doing reviews anyway.
Which actually was another reason why I'm happy to have received one more review by him - as I've said, there are not that much reviewers around (and Bert Strolenberg is ever so busy Laughing )

Quote:
And again, let's go back on topic. Which is your album. Smile


Oh, that... Thanks for the reminder! Laughing

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 1:08 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

The reviews are in general not too critical so why bother the language. He is a nice guy who does a lot for the community.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:32 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

« REWO Records » wrote:
The reviews are in general not too critical so why bother the language. He is a nice guy who does a lot for the community.

Community being the musicians who send him their music. Not the listeners.

Not too critical is not exactly a recommendation for a review site in my book. It has the risk of being more of a marketing tool for musicians instead of a buyer's guide. And yes, I noted almost everything he's reviewed has 4 or 5 stars. But maybe he just likes all the music he gets (and listens to).

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:52 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

Ahh - nice! Shocked A discussion is going on!

« VCO1 » wrote:
« REWO Records » wrote:
The reviews are in general not too critical so why bother the language. He is a nice guy who does a lot for the community.

Community being the musicians who send him their music. Not the listeners.


Well, apparently there are listeners who take interest in his reviews, so I guess it's not completely worthless for them...

« VCO1 » wrote:
Not too critical is not exactly a recommendation for a review site in my book. It has the risk of being more of a marketing tool for musicians instead of a buyer's guide. And yes, I noted almost everything he's reviewed has 4 or 5 stars. But maybe he just likes all the music he gets (and listens to).


Indeed there are a couple of reviewers who tend to be as positive and supportive as they can to the artists they write about (and maybe are a fan of), and probably shy back from panning someone; maybe they don't want to get in any trouble with some artist who is dissatisfied with their review.
However, I observed that sometimes it's the way of such reviewers (and I'm not judging that) to just skip an album which they cannot praise and indeed review just those which they like.
Since most of those reviewers do that on a hobby basis and probably just want to have a good time with that occupation, I think that's OK...

What I find much more suspicious is that there are obviously reviewers who praise musicians for money - actually I have received such offers from different "professional" online music magazines - really a list with their prices for "promo items" - which includes reviews. So far, I never made use of such an offer, of course (too poor Razz )

Fortunately, after all, there are also review pages where the guys don't shy back from speaking their mind and there's a real risk to end up panned if they think that you under-achieved; for example the "Babyblaue Seiten" or "Hypnagogue Reviews". Or "Sonic Immersion". I admit that sending music there gives me much more thrills than in some cases where I - for hopefully good reasons - can expect some appreciation.

To my relief, as far as my stuff has been discussed in such places, most of the time the verdicts of the "praise centered" reviewers were confirmed there (not always, though). Laughing

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 5:33 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

I have noticed that many reviews are there to help the musicians get their music marketed which is good. I always appreciated the support of those reviewers. But it can be risky as well.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 8:24 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

I like the Sonic Immersion website, plenty of well written reviews and Bert isn't shy if an album in his opinion doesn't cut it.

That said, forums like this one, while not containing reviews as such, are also good places to pick up tips and recommendations for albums.

As for being paid to write only good reviews, that is indeed unsporting to say the least...

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 12:29 pm    (No subject) Reply with quoteBack to top

« GrahamH » wrote:
I like the Sonic Immersion website, plenty of well written reviews and Bert isn't shy if an album in his opinion doesn't cut it.


Indeed!

« GrahamH » wrote:
That said, forums like this one, while not containing reviews as such, are also good places to pick up tips and recommendations for albums.


Hopefully this forum is...! Cool

« GrahamH » wrote:
As for being paid to write only good reviews, that is indeed unsporting to say the least...


"Unsporting"...! Laughing Thanks, that's a great way to put it... *making a note for later use* Wink

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