Review for Dark Model album 'Saga'

Dark Model is renowned music producer Tatsuya Oe’s latest endeavor.  Forged from electric gravitating beats backed with orchestral renderings, Saga, is Oe’s flagship in which his magnetic creations come alive in raging detail.  Dark Model’s first album was nominated for 14th Annual Independent Music Awards (The IMAs) in the Dance/Electronica category.  Here, in his newest project, he hones 13 massive missives that covers never before charted dance territory.

The epically depicted album opens with “Prelude,”an operatic approach with lots of polished electronica beats that overall produce a heightened effect along with its orchestral embellishments.  The energetic strings are high-strung and with this vibrancy you can detect the graceful ebb and flow of the orchestra moving along throughout the track.  The movements are provocative and seamlessly blends with the technology prevalent in the track.

On “Avalon”, we see the electronic details being derived from a brooding atmosphere.  There is a depth to the darkness that surrounds the track.  The airy themes and notes of adventure really carries in this ambient-based song.  With a marching band style, this song incorporates different aspects of electronic beats to create a lively ambiance to the haunting riffs and thematic refrains.

Toward “Rage and Redemption,” the electronics give a disparaging world view to the post-apocalyptic themes.  The choral background singing heightens the dramatically rendered and demented aesthetic.  A lot of tension is built up in the track and this sense of urgency seems to grow at an alarming rate until the conclusion of the song, where listeners will gradually warm to the war symbolism brought up in the sensibility of the music.

The next track is the title-track, which starts off once again with a stirring array of strings.  The tight production is intricately layered with energetic beats and a symphonic finish.  As the track ensues, the enriching vibe and clashing percussions melds into confrontational music that blends EDM with a strong underlying backbeat.

The following track “Inferno Suite” has a choral beginning that really gets listeners into the moody appeal of the piece.  The racing, fast beats sets up the pace for the radically massive structure of the entire work.  The electronic beats backed by an orchestra is fervent with an energetic vibe and surmounts from the addition of choral layered harmonies.

The dense affair of Oe’s Saga takes in more heavily clad layers of repetitious melodies as we circle into the next track, titled “Labyrinth.” The dramatic storytelling unfolds as the ominous sounds of hypnotic strings fleshes out a tense, yet spirited narrative.

Oe seems to operate under the pressures of producing a collection of songs based entirely on instrumentals by incorporating his eye for developing tight-knit concepts from what he calls “Musical Narratives” that he creates for each dramatizing of a song.  On “Stormy Goddess,” the stormy, destructive staccato beat along with lively riffs constructs a layered sound as well as a strong sense of atmosphere.  The technological-based beats do not detract from the acoustics of having a live orchestra in the background but by far enhances the arrangement.

“Danse Macabre” with its techno energy and groovy vibrations follows an amped course of mostly heavily layered interwoven material.  The choral singing weaves in and out of the refrain as well as seamlessly syncing with the entire composition a powerful array of timeless beats and breaks.

Saga continues on with the piano laden, “Elegy 1” filled with vibrant and staccato movement of lush strings and “Dawn of Resurrection” packed with breaks and a dreamy, airy feel.  While the spiraling effects of such tracks like “Rage and Redemption (No Choral Mix),” “Inferno Suite (No Choral Mix),” and Danse Macabre (No Choral Mix),” focuses purely on the organic foliage of orchestral-based instruments to uplift the diverse range of technological beats.

Oe’s compositions take you on a journey deep into the future and underground into the mysterious recesses of this world.  An elaborate affair that enlightens listeners with its dazzling arrangements and expansive blend of orchestral remixes, Saga significantly rectifies both the new and the old and fuses together what is considered classical music into the modern context of electronic structured beats.  Powerful and engaging, Dark Model has fastened a makeshift of fantastical elements, providing both real and unreal details into this sweeping and highly charged conceptual album.

Dark Model’s Saga will be released Mar. 24.

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My Nguyen

My Nguyen is a CD reviewer from San Diego, CA. She regularly contributes to Her work has appeared in the following journals: Quietpoly, Community Voices, Espresso 1, The Whistling Fire, The Pedestal Magazine, The Straylight Magazine, Baby Lawn Literature, and Conceit Magazine.

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