Lackluster: Repulsine

Repulsine, Esa Ruoho's sixteenth Lackluster release, takes its inspiration from Viktor Schauberger, an echo-technology pioneer who created the Repulsine—a nature-mimicking machine that produces energy by encouraging a centripetal, inwardly-spiraling movement of water or air that, ideally, enables the Repulsine to levitate—as a vehicle for manifesting the belief. Of course, being wholly instrumental, the half-hour EP's graceful IDM can just as easily be broached on its own terms minus the conceptual backing (though the spiraling melodic character of the tracks does draw a connection to Schauberger's idea) and handles itself perfectly well if done so. Composed in Ireland, England, and Saskatchewan, the six songs are suitably sunny in spirit (in keeping with the Utopian positivity Ruoho gleans from the writings of Schauberger, Tesla, Buckminster Fuller, etc.) and exude the kind of unsullied innocence and joy one associates with childhood (conveyed most vividly in the see-sawing flow of “Yoggi”). Glistening arcade melodies and jubilantly skipping beats set the tone in the three-minute overture “Hmainham,” a spirit perpetuated by the heavenward spiral of gleaming melodic patterns in “TKB” and in Repulsine's other four pieces.

December 2007