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Amera

Amera

Review by Gary Hill

According to this group's press materials, they are focused on live performance. Given the material here, it's a good bet that their live shows are intense. While this music is electronic dance styled stuff, it seems like the kind of thing that would get quite dramatic and powerful in the live music setting. One of the things I like about this is the fact that (other than on one song for effect), the vocals here are mostly un-processed. There seems to be an annoying movement in this genre toward auto-tuned vocals. I hate auto-tuning to begin with, but it's becoming almost a cliché at this point. So, it's refreshing to hear an act that avoids this. The quick answer is that if you like EDM, you will probably dig this set. Even if you don't normally listen to that style, give this a chance. It is the cream that rises to the top of the bulk of that musical style.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2018  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Prelude (Dolphin's Flight)
Ambient electronic sounds bring this into being. It grows outward and upward from there. Some cool electronic textures and melodies emerge over the top. After the one minute mark this thing peaks into some powerhouse prog-like music. There is really a definite Tangerine Dream kind of vibe to this instrumental.
Shiver
Fast paced and rather crazed electronic music is the order of business here. The vocals are processed to the point of feeling fully artificial. There is a cool piano solo section. This has so much power and driving force. It's really cool.
Cobra
The opening section here is built around a saxophone meets piano sound. It brings a cool sultry jazz element to the proceedings. An electronic backdrop emerges to create the percussive concept. The piece works forward from there. The vocals come in with a more natural sound, bringing both more jazz and a bit of a soulful vibe. This is experimental and very cool. Yet, it's also oddly catchy. It turns out to a percussive electronic driving movement in an instrumental section later. That movement serves as the extended outro to the piece.
Connected
This is now a single. Tasty electronic elements bring it in a bit tentatively. It makes sense that they would release this as a single because it's one of the best and most accessible tracks here. While the vocals are sometimes processed a bit, mostly they are fairly natural. The cut has a lot of energy and drive. It has a definite progressive rock element at play, but this is more of an electronic dance music piece overall. That point is brought home on the powered up closing section that's full electronic dance intensity.
Sun Will Rise
A more mainstream electronic dance number, this is actually quite strong. It's just not as unique as some of the rest here. Still, the energy and melodies bring a lot to it. The voice provides the icing on a tasty cake.
Yours and Mine
The EDM meets industrial/techno vibe on this is strong. Again, this cut isn't any kind of big stretch. It's just a particularly effective electronic dance music piece. It's actually kind of a powerhouse.
 
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