PROGRESSIVE AREA (Review posted August 31, 2008)

Hermetic Science • These Fragments I Have Shored Against My Ruins

Hermetic Science, through its name, announces the complexion.  The music can appear “hermetic” to you if you want a normal or neo-progressive music.  Here, our trio taps into a jazz music where the musicians like to play upon atmospheres and complexity.  From the first notes of “De Profundis,” the piano of Ed Macan permits itself to be gently experimental, afterwards more melancholy.  The music evinces a certain melancholy elsewhere, perhaps due to the minimalist ambience.  A short distance from electric pranks, the music of this group places itself more in an intersection between classical, jazz, and contemporary.

“Voyages” offers a jazz rock where experimentation finds its place but without ever dragging on.  The music also takes more directed turns before losing itself in a complex and cyclic music.  A voyage unfolds, terminating with a strongly seductive symphonism.

Then comes the epic of the album, “Triptych.”  Jazz rock is always a factor.  The instrumental music that Hermetic Science develops varies and states itself in different registers.  A certain ethnic aspect emerges equally from a music which can appear minimalist at first hearing but which takes all its value in its progression and its development.

Then the first part of “Melancholia” comes to us reposing in the sweetness of a piano before the group recaptures its more instrumental jazz-based intentions with “Aion.”  The music retains this idea of a symphonic jazz through multiple changes driven by the keyboards of Ed Macan.  The utilization of certain percussion instruments recalls to us Mike Oldfield but the whole rests far from progressive norms, if there are norms.  In short, a fine effort upon a music sustained without the clumsiness of tensions . . .

Then comes the second part of “Melancholia” in a short instrumental interlude of mysterious keyboards.

“The Second Coming” has the difficult task of concluding the album.  A clock sounds the knell of an always refined and carefully fashioned music.  The end rests in a melodic jazz where the keyboards ornament in the symphonic manner a somewhat chattering bass.

Hermetic Science signs off here their fourth album in a particular register that may please some and displease others.  Far from the habitual progressive clichés, and furthermore placing itself in the register of the “experimenters.”  Jean Louis

Ed Macan—Keyboards, Mallet Percussion
Jason Hoopes—Bass, Guitars
Angelique Curry—Drums, Percussion

1.  De Profundis (10:09)
2.  Voyages (6:38)
3.  Triptych (15:32)
4.  Melancholia I (1:54)
5.  Aion (8:15)
6.  Melancholia II (1:11)
7.  The Second Coming (6:49)

Original (in French):