Refuge en Verre is the name of a chalet located in the Belgian Ardennes. It is also the place where Michel van Osenbruggen, better known under the name of Synth. NL and Ron Boots sealed an increasing friendship during a family weekend of which synths and PCs were in the middle of victuals and, especially, where the panorama was favorable for an inspiration which precisely nourished these synths and PCs. Family meeting in an absolutely splendid place, according to the description made by the two accomplices, it didn’t need anything more to compose an album which soaks in a convivial ambiance. A Refuge en Verre where the duality as well rhythmic as melodious which lives and differentiates the musical universes from Ron Boots and Michel van Osenbruggen is completing throughout this soft opus to hybrid atmospheres.
A distant synth breath tinted by a cosmic flavor opens Refuge en Verre. Layers ramble in a galaxy where voices of children can be heard. We would believe being in morning when the life wakes up behind a dome of fog emits by a suave mellotron and where the nature takes life with butterflies’ wings which flicker on fines and nervous percussions. Waves whistle in this quixotic firmament, crossing morning quietude. And gently, as for not awakening the universe, the rhythm is settling with a fine syncopated line which supports percussions and girdles mellotron pads. Synth solos fuse with density and acuity on a fine melodious line of an oniric and poetic softness, wrapping thus the first portion of Refuge en Verre. Around the 5th minute the tempo is isolating from these solos to borrow a less dreamy rhythmic, but as quite warmth, where keyboard keys shape a soft jazzed approach on a structure always agitated of a syncopated line. The long solos come back to hoodwink around Refuge en Verre, witness of the duality as well rhythmic as melodious of Ron Boots and Synth. NL. Small sound particles whirl in the opening of La Roche-en-Ardenne. A short atmospheric intro that a good strike of percussion disable sharply to light a street rhythm with hammerings that ram a sturdy walking around where synth solos twirl around a heavy bass line, à la Patrick O' Hearn, which bites the tempo. A track which is very close to the melodious rhythms of Synth. NL, just like the furious and very rock Combat des Coqs. A fine rain shower crossed of remote thunders and dandled of soft perfumes from a solitary synth opens Orage d’Été. The synth there is soft and croon on a light rhythmic divided by split by glitters of percussions and clogs which furrow a road for souls in search of a refuge. A beautiful atmospheric track which transcends a bit the ambiguous and static tempos from Steve Roach and Rudy Adrian desert and tribal soundscapes. Very languorous, to the limit sensual, Coucher du Soleil presents a prismatic intro where synth breezes weave an ochre veil. A veil sifted, as the weak gleams of a sun which embraces the half-lights of a day, a soft tempo drawn by electronic percussions with hypnotic rebounds. Tender mellotron pads, flooded by wandering choirs, waltz with beautiful synth solos. They wake up low shimmering chords and furrow a duality of rhythms with a fine syncopated line which dances in withdrawal to give a warm and unique dimension to one of the very beautiful tracks of Refuge en Verre. Also presenting a very atmospheric introduction, Contemple du Ciel wakes up on a fine structure which spins in harmony among beautiful synth layers which exchange solos and harmony on light ‘‘ hands slapping kind’’ percussions. Synths and mellotrons are suave there and lasciviously dance around an undulating structure which winds the sky like a stairway towards stars. A soft and very harmonious track with beautiful synth solos with Arab fragrances. Rosée du Matin is the most ambient track of Refuge en Verre. A concerto for solitary synth which cries its loneliness in the morning dew. A great track which points out Vangelis and Opera Sauvage. Soleil Levant concludes this first Boots/Synth. NL collaboration with a heavy track filled of long and twisted synth solos. Hopping tempo envelopes an intro which floats in mellotron fogs of a contemplative wandering. A fine syncopated line flickers besides heavy percussions and a beautiful bass line which weave the rhythmic background of Soleil Levant, whose ascending rhythm is sieved by strident, but superb, synth solos.
Heavy rhythms, poetic ambiances, a fusion of synth with solos and harmonies tearing on a Vangelis and Roach (not to say Boots) framework, hybrid sequences where percussions marinate marvelously well with sequencers chords; here is the takings of Refuge en Verre. A beautiful album of EM which doesn’t have weak moments and where the presence of Ron Boots in the universe of Synth. NL adds an amazing depth to the ‘‘Jarresques’’ and ‘‘Vangelesques’’ rhythms and melodies of Michel van Osenbruggen. In short a beautiful album, very melodious and filled with charm which is listening like taking time to live.