Review

O Yuki Conjugate

Into Dark Water

Emotional Rescue • 2020

Looking at the music world of the 1980s, one often speaks of the rapidly changing production possibilities that made the sound of a decade so unique. Digital recordings, drum machines, mixers, samplers, synthesizers, amps became more affordable, could be modulated and interconnected in many different ways. Keyword: MIDI. Even without a recording studio, record deal or session musician, the design of entire sound landscapes was possible. How sublimely the guys of O Yuki Conjugate already knew how to navigate these new means in 1987 can only astonish in retrospect. With its lucid New Age tones, »Into Dark Water« was on the one hand deeply rooted in the spirit of the times, but on the other hand already used reverbs, samples and exotic instruments in such a virtuoso harmonic way as only Jon Hassell or Richard Horowitz did back then. This album still evokes that lavender-scented nostalgia and sounds remarkably timeless. From the ritual foreboding in »Ascension« to the weightlessly shimmering »Cloud Cover« in the sky and the departure into a new life (»Another Journey«), it remains to be experienced with all senses: images, smells, harmonies, whose cascades are formed by flutes, flowing synthesizers and drums. All pieces are free of kitsch. Despite the ethereal instrumentation, the melodrama remains distant. Nothing here seems exaggerated, artificial or produced. Much more, »Into Dark Water« is the believable setting of an archetypal vision in which being human can mean rapture again.