"Halo" is Redshift's fifth album release. An entirely studio-based recording it was performed solely by Mark Shreeve. It showcases a darker sensibility to the music than previous Redshift albums, a theme continued by many subsequent releases.
The violence of tracks like "Panzer" and "Savage Messiah" contrast with the more ethereal pieces such as "Leaving".
The title track, also the longest, begins in the most minimal style before slowly building and layering towards an almost bombastic climax.
Tracks like "Leviathan" and "Turbine" demonstrate the darker and more industrial emotions of rhythmic electronic music.
Here are a couple of reviews:
"Episode 5 from the modular masters has been hailed as their finest work by virtually all who have heard it. There is no doubt that this album is another awesome chapter in the band's career, it is a powerful brooding masterpiece which adds more credence to Redshift's claim to the very highest echelons of the EM scene.
This album carrying on the trend set by 'Downtime' in so far that it is
exploring a moodier side of the Redshift sound. It seems to be an inevitable trend for purveyors of the Moog modular to explore 'The
Darker Side' and on 'Halo' Redshift have to all intents and purposed picked up the baton dropped by Node.
Their sound is dominated by the Moog Modular, and it's the change in emphasis around this machine which is leading the way to pastures new. 'Ether', and to a large extent their new release 'Siren', see the Moog in polyryhthmic, syncopating and (importantly) melodic form which gives the music that 'Ricochet' vibe for want of a better term.
However on 'Halo', as was demonstrated by their tremendous live performance recently, the Moog can be used in a very different way, delivering a more ordered, less complex, almost percussive backdrop for the other Redshift elements to latch onto. Here the objective is drama, depth and raw power. It works fantastically and the result is one of those albums to play loud and proud to really shake the foundations.
9 tracks are on offer ranging from a couple of minutes to a touch under 15, though many are segued so an extended outing is available.
Perhaps the title track is the pivotal piece, occupying the centre ground of the album and offering a sequential backbone which perhaps, of all the rhythms on offer, harks back most to previous Redshift outings. Adorning this tapestry are some enormous power chords, this is perhaps one of the strengths of the band.
Though I've banged on about the Moog, all the elements on offer are strong from synths to atmospherics and not least the guitar elements which as ever are pitched to perfection.
So there you have it, it's another Redshift studio album and really those words alone will have people flocking to buy this. And they won't be disappointed. But I personally still hold 'Ether' as the benchmark. OK it's a different sound, and in terms of 'The Darker Side' I've heard little to top 'Halo'.
I just hope that for future releases Redshift just don't plough on down the black hole to the detriment of those multilayered syncopating tapestries, and their uncanny knack for sublime melody. Otherwise we may just lose another band to "the dark side of the Moog". "(GG)
"The concept behind Redshift is the voyage to where sound and space become indistinct. While the group uses the sounds and stylings that emerged out of the Berlin scene of 1970s Germany, their mission goes beyond mere mimicry and the group produces music which explores the centre of the Space music genre as deeply as does the boundaries.
In November of 2002, Redshift marked their appearance at "Hampshire Jam 2" by releasing two albums: "Halo", a studio work, and "Siren", which was recorded live at the 6th Alfa Centauri Festival in Huizen, Holland on 10 April 1999. These two releases show Redshift continuing to refine their distinctive voice in a genre where ego and personality are concepts to overcome on the way to communing with the universe.
"Halo" is a work hovering at the eternal dusk of dreams and interstellar space. It is a musical experience that offers the sensation of passing through something; perhaps a beam from some far-off galaxy or a shower of cosmic debris.
The album is intelligently designed and the wonderful transitions between movements draw the listener along easily. Relying on moods created through texture and atmosphere, "Halo" also offers a strong melodic content which is matched by extraordinary ever evolving sequencer cycling.
The tight analogue tones dance up and down the octave, in and out of synchronisation with a throbbing bass rhythm and create seemingly endless permutations of pulse and flow. Above this torrent floats misty consonant choirs cut by reed thin themes traversing the scales." Chuck van Zyl
released November 9, 2002
Composed, performed and produced by Mark Shreeve.
Cover artwork by Gary Scott.
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