Coruscation review by Andy Garibaldi

For the first time on CD, one of the finest albums from one of the most underrated of the musicians that sprang onto the UK synth music scene in the eighties. Not only is it remastered, but it also features over 33 minutes of previously unreleased tracks.

The album opens with the six minute "Hunger Hill" which revolves around a typically solid undercurrent of sequencer rhythms as the lead synth melodies flow along majestically on top, while other synth rhythms are added to the sequencers so that the whole thing drives along superbly, and with its mix of Berlin-esque influences married to the art of writing a fine tune, it couldn't be anything else other than eighties UK synth territory but one that has more than stood the test of time and still sounds great to this day.

"The Swaggering" actually predates the synth-meets-dance movement of ten or more years hence, as a rolling driving beat of electro-percussive strength, strides along with repeated synth embellishments but topped by this river of melody that lends the track its air of real enjoyment, while the rhythms are maintained at mid-pace so that it sounds more like "synth" than anything overtly "trancey" and at five minutes, states its case with cohesion and conviction.

As yet another contrast, the four minutes of "Nullified" fairly rattle along with fast-paced twittering electro-percussive rhythms, equally resonant electronic bass, while above this a mix of deep and surface synth melodies and textures, makes their presence felt, and lends the track a quite eerie atmosphere, but at the same time, lends a real depth and emotion to it, too, and although it seems fast, it actually also manages to seem spacey too, quite a feat and a remarkable four minute piece.

At nearly seven minutes long "Qwerty Uiop" reverts back to the opening track as sequencers and majestic melodies are driven by an extra undercurrent of electro-percussive rhythms while the sequencers are multi-tracked for extra effect, as the equally multi-textured synth streams and melodies drive forward with purpose and direction.

The final track of the original album is "York Aspiring" and is a 21 minute epic which opens up in space synth mode before blossoming out into a ringing synth that is underpinned by gentle electro-percussive rhythms, assorted lead keyboard and synth melodies flowing along on top and assorted textural electronics flowing around, alongside and behind, all providing this splendid air of open spaces, cosmic bliss and solid structure as it continues to surge forward in a slowly measurable manner. Then it gathers pace as a decidedly solid set of rhythms is introduced from strong sequencers and surging electro-percussives, as all sorts of lead synth melodies interweave and flow on top to positively glorious effect. From there it gradually moves back to a long section of calmer waters with plenty of cosmic melodic textures warmly moving along to great atmospheric effect at the same time as being something that seems to fit so naturally with what's gone before. To end, the piece then returns to a more upbeat finale as sequencers return and it all takes off to soaring heights as it all drives forward to the end, a truly multi-faceted, cohesive and highly engaging track which, as befits the whole album, is positively timeless.

As stated earlier, three extra tracks in the form of early versions of tracks from the album, including the epic, are equally enjoyable and fitting to the album without feeling repetitive in any way.

Andy Garibaldi