The sixth volume in Thomas Heckmann’s long-running series finds him raiding more lost arks of genre girth, revealing how well he mints extraordinary variations on many well-established electronic architectures. This particular volume is a moog-tastic parade across patch-chord theories first proposed by Mssrs. Schulze and Froese (with the academe playfulness of Subotnick lurking in the background), as Heckmann revels in glorious bits of symphonic extraterrestrialism wrought by the swirling sturm und drang of “The Heritage of Evolution” as well as the yesteryear tangerine dreams that make such electronic explorations so beautifully poignant and ravishing (the sprightly and engaging moonpop of “The Fishbowl Adventures”). And lest one think that Heckmann isn’t capable of showing us his dark side, the vantablack tone of his sequencers and pulsating mellotrons helps to invest “Veil of Secrecy” with coiling, poised menace. This is an artist who reminds us why we fell in love with synthesized sound in the first place: kaleidoscopic auras and arias that feel like the very heavens bursting open, atmospheric tundra that are at once organic and alien, conjuring the stuff of dreams, half-glimpsed and hallucinatory. That Heckmann is now a master of the wilder synth arts can hardly be contested—what is for certain is his remarkable breadth of ideas, punctuated by an obvious love for and remarkable facility with the hoary old synthesizers from which he spins his illustrious sonic yarns.
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