Solo project by Nemesis member Ami Hassinen.
Omicron in Ostrobothnian Finsternis
Running time: 0:53:57
Vaporizer - 6:40
Footprints in the Sky - 5:33
Meteorstorme - 6:31
Start Before You Stop - 5:51
Omicron - 3:58
Finsternis - 4:22
Ostrobothnia - 7:37
Absit Invidia - 13:25
Ashen Simian is really a pseudonym (and an anagram) of Nemesis (Xtempora / Cyberiad etc) man Ami Hassinen.
A hissing pulse is joined by a steady beat which soon develops into a stonking one hundred mile an hour body-moving groove. ‘Vaporizer’ certainly lives up to its title. Melodies are subtle and there is even some mellotron in there from time to time but overall this is a track which is all about rhythm. ‘Footprints in the Sky’ begins with slow, head nodding syncopations. A most wonderful bass line strikes up followed quickly by lovely piano lead. This really is a stunningly beautiful number. Just close your eyes and let yourself go.
'Meteorstorme' begins with an exquisite melodic metallic lead, all rather tranquil. Things start to get more syncopated as the track gradually builds. Little guitar licks lift the soul. Fantastic strings and mellotron bring it to its close. Simply stunning. An infectious brace of sequences gets ‘Start Before you Stop’ underway. The pace quickens as tron lead sours to the heavens. Things get faster still as more infectious melodies come one after another. There is so much movement and shifting of ideas in this track (even down to the last few seconds) that most people would have spread it over an entire album. ‘Omicron’ uses a series of melodic percussive loops as the backing over which a melody that will stick in your mind way after the album has finished, grabs you by the heart (and is ideal for air keyboard playing). Things then develop a bit of a snarl as electric guitar enters, a sequence swelling to accompany it. The melody returns and nerves are soothed once more. Each track so far has been awesome and this one is no exception.
‘Finsternis’ is all swirling and atmospheric. A bass sequence starts to build, in a stop start sort of way only solidifying as delicate lead lines enter to bind it all together. ‘Ostrobothnia’ gets into an infectious foot tapping rhythm right from the off, more guitar licks and tron imparting that little extra ‘oh yes!’ factor. Again the melodies are sublime and got me punching the air in pure joy. You guessed it, yet another slice of pure brilliance! ‘Absit Invidia’ calms us with soothing atmos. A slightly harder edge develops then the first sequence / mellotron combination arrives. A second sequence falls into formation (all very Berlin School) as things become more oomph laden by the second. When the guitar really does get into its stride we are firmly in Tangerine Dream ‘Force Majeure’ territory! The sequences morph and bounce off each other inspirationally (now maybe a little more ‘Poland’).
This is an incredible album that I am unworthy to even try and review. Surely destined to be one of the highlights of 2009. (DL)