Sladerfluous Reviews: ‘Atlas’ by FM-84

- Posted May 30th, 2016 by

‘Atlas’ by FM-84 is too spectacular to ignore.

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This is one of those moments where we at Chiptunes = WIN felt compelled to break open our scope to bring an album to the forefront that orbits our main focusing sub-genre because when you hear this incredible collection by Col Bennett (featuring several MIND BLOWING collaborations), you’ll be thankful that we made the exception and brought FM-84’s masterful dreamwave artistry to your attention.

Start your ‘Atlas’ journey with ‘Arcade Summer’, a delightful ambient introduction into FM-84’s 80’s synth dreamwave stylings, but be warned that this is only the tip of one magnificent iceberg…

‘ARCADE SUMMER’ by FM-84
There is so much more to love within ‘Atlas’. Continue on through the review below and experience the dreamwave decadence that ‘Atlas’ has to offer…

‘Atlas’ includes several atmospheric ambient explorations filled with power, solace, and comtemplation. FM-84 demonstrates a clear intricate knowledge of composition to create viscerally emotional transitions throughout ‘Atlas’, with the featured track ‘Jupiter’ below as a prime example showcasing FM-84’s ability to create set-pieces through music and evoke immediate senses of connection within the album’s “story of wonder, imagination, dreams, youth, innocence, love and heartbreak all captured under the golden light of a fading summer sun” as captured from the album’s Bandcamp description.

‘JUPITER’ by FM-84

‘Jupiter’ has a definite galactic tone, with deep throbbing pulses laying out the foundation behind heavy percussion. Distant echoing crackles compliment an emerging melody filled with hope through exploration, expanding on a sense of discovery through an emergence of powerful melodic compliments until the expanse is filled with wonderment. FM-84’s ability to express such an arc within ‘Jupiter’ amazes here, and proves that these ambient tracks stand tall on their own without need for lyrical accompaniment to convey ideas.

‘Atlas’ includes a cornucopia of delicious ambient tracks, however several tentpole collaborations layer over FM-84’s synth foundations to create lyrical power ballads that transcend “tribute”: these are stand-alone works of art that hold up beside the likes of Def Leppard and Whitesnake while adapting contemporary sensibilities that capitalize on poignant transitions and subtle nuance to build out these tracks into such must-listen experiences.

RUNNING IN THE NIGHT(FEAT. OLLIE WRIDE)

‘Running in the night’ features vocals and lyrics by match-made-in-heaven collaborator Ollie Wride. The partnership presented here is simply divine. Assisted by the album’s overall theme of living carefree, ‘Running in the Night’ is such an expression of pure joy. The trusty percussion instantly grounds ‘Running in the Night’ into power ballad mode while synth pours overtop, weaving intricate architecture for Ollie Wride to leap from with an incredible purity. Simply put, ‘Running in the Night’ is an earworm that you can leave on repeat all day and feel imbued with its joy with each passing listen.

WILD ONES (FEAT. OLLIE WRIDE)

‘Wild Ones’ experiments with a different direction than the aforementioned ‘Running in the Night’, exuding much more of a “Neverending Story” whimsical vibe than the more cyber-punk infused danger of ‘Running in the Night’. Imbued with the classic close-knit harmonic stylings, ‘Wild Ones’ revels in its own exuberance, coaxing out a sly flirtatious tone made famous with 80’s hair metal that is a totally refreshing performance by Ollie Wride that imbues ‘Wild Ones’ with unbridled joy. Beyond the scope of the track, it is abundantly clear that the collaboration between Wride and Bennett is one that needs to be revisited in the future as their collaborations are absolutely magical.

‘Atlas’ by FM-84 is available now for download on Bandcamp for $7USD (or more) and could not come more highly recommended. Pick up ‘Atlas’ for your collection and support this incredible work so that we can encourage more from FM-84 in the future!

PixelRecall ~ (R. Morgan Slade) ~ Support the artists you love

FM-84:
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