BLACK LIGHT (Classic EM series vol. 1)
I wrote this album to let out all the pain and confusion I was feeling during a very difficult time of my life - music's always helped keep me sane...

I turned into music my feeling of not being adequate to this world; the shock of seeing the horrors human beings can perpetrate when I saw some documentaries on nazism and realized that the very same kinds of things still go on in many parts of the world, even if on a smaller scale and under different names; the accident I had at the beginning of 2005 with a chainsaw that split one side of my face in half, and the notion that some scars carve pain deeper into us and are harder to cure than those of the body; the desire for bad times as hard as a winter to end; my attempts at understanding some of the things that were going on around and inside of me; the loneliness I felt in that place where nobody could reach me; the feeling that all was wrong; my willingness to do all it took to straighten things out; and the sensation that sometimes in life even light seems to be black...

Released by SynGate

I have been exchanging emails with Mac for a few years now, on and off, so was aware of a horrendous accident he had after which he had to come to terms with both mental and physical scars on the long journey to recovery. He was cutting up wood with a chainsaw and suddenly the chainsaw hit something, bounced back and struck him in the face. During the ordeal that followed over the next few months Mac said that sometimes things became so dark that 'even the light seems to be black', thus the title of this album. Sometimes though, times of such despair fuel an artist's creativity and that is what has happened here as 'Black Light' is an amazing album, quite the best I have ever heard from him either solo or as part of BIOnighT.
'Inadequate' starts with bright but moody shimmering melodic touches wafting through the air then in comes a rhythm and bouncy sequence combination. The sequence is excellent but I am not too sure about the drums as they do sound a little too 'retro' to me thus provide the only slightly negative comment I have about the entire album. Having said that though they do seem to blend in with the piece the more you listen to it.
'Manmade Horrors' continues on at quite a pace with an excellent bubbling sequence taking the initial lead before an even better bass sequence joins it and it is from here on in that the album really starts to show its class. Again brooding pads form quite an effective contrast as yet another sequence is added almost giving a snarl to proceedings. Fantastic Stuff!
'A Deeper Pain' continues to feature sequences heavily but this time slower, as if questing, trying to find something. A way out maybe. The sequences go through various twists before disappearing only to return accompanied by an almost hissing rhythm. Again, absolutely wonderful.
'Waiting for the Winter to end' is really moody as windy effects mix with soft tron type sounds and a tender piano lead line. It is a gorgeous interlude that breaks things up again before the sequences return once more in 'Trying to Understand'. They are of a tinkling variety which provides the perfect foil for the introduction of another spot on ballsey bass sequence. They form their own melody as they weave round each other captivating the mind, drawing you in. No chance of concentration wandering here. Rhythm joins the pulsations and I am reminded a little of Skin Mechanix at their best. Virtual guitar then comes in adding that extra bite.
'Scars' brings back rumbling deep dark sequences. This is moody, moody, haunting stuff. In the last two minutes all the pulsations disappear and we are left with deep melancholy atmospherics. Another slice of brilliance.
'If I have to' keeps up the despair with string sounds then angst ridden distorted virtual guitar type electronic barrages. A brooding sequence rumbles forward trying to dispel the feeling of hopelessness. The pace quickens as more rhythm comes in along with explosive soundwaves.
'Blade of Loneliness' has a rather desolate feel as metallic drones just echo in the air to fade into the distance. Very effective it is too.
'All Wrong' kicks the sequences back into life in the form of a staccato run of bass notes which get faster and faster as more lines of pulsations come to join it in very Arc fashion. Indeed it would have been very at home on 'Radio Sputnik' even getting to 'Arcturus' proportions as we progress further in. This album is full of fantastic tracks but this is the best so far- awesome!
We finish with the title track. Swirling electronics and sighing windy effects breath from the speakers like listening to the very sounds from Hell. Another excellent sequence emerges from the maelstrom, reminding me a little of Rolf Trostel. Fizzing stabs of sound add to the feeling of foreboding still further.
This has been one of my most played albums all year. Very highly recommended.

David Law - Synth Music Direct (UK) Click HERE to visit their website

This is not Mac's newest creation in his 'classic EM' series but an album that he made in 2005 during his recovery after an unpleasant accident with a chainsaw three years ago. Firmly rooted in the style of the masters of the Berlin School (most notably TD), these ten tracks certainly manage to retain their own identity and are good for more than an hour's listening pleasure. The somewhat macabre opening of "If I Have To" is quickly filled with one of his many wonderful sequences that, in turn, evolves into a more complex whole. Flowing over this come a couple of delicate melodies and then the piece settles down for a stately and peaceful end. In my opinion, the deeper personal emotions of Mac himself are often audible - as is the case in "Blade of Loneliness"; the pain and the will to heal, along with the desire to rediscover the good things in life are beautifully portrayed here. The build-up of "All Wrong" also matches the best of TD at the beginning of the eighties. Of course this isn't quite the same level of originality as TD, but "Black Light" is absolutely no 'dumb copy' and is a breath of fresh air in today's market. Samples can be heard on the website of this likeable Italian musician.

Menno Von Brucken Fock (The Netherlands) Click HERE to visit his website

Though written during a dark time in Mac's life, the music is typically upbeat and irresistible. "Inadequate" starts with warm synth strings much like AirSculpture often do, but within less than a minute a steady beat and cool sequencing picks up the pace. This mid-tempo piece has a wonderful groove to it. And while "Manmade Horrors" has a rather ominous title, it has wonderfully bright, brisk sequencing from the get-go. Though it reminds me of Dom F. Scab's fast Berlin school style, it captures the classic BIOnighT sound as well. "A Deeper Pain" is equally incongruous, the bright optimistic tones belying the nature of Mac's emotions when he wrote it. Again the sequencing, pace and melody are first-rate. "Waiting for the Winter to End" is softer and sadder, with pretty synth flutes. "Trying to Understand" starts slow but it too tends toward the brighter and more melodic end of the spectrum once it gets going. I love the really low bass sequence in "Scars," balanced by high shimmering tones hanging above it. A lighter sequence takes up the middle ground, as does a soft synth lead. Intricately weaved synths, sequencing and rhythms form "If I Have To," another fun one. And so it goes, well-arranged EM compositions right up to and including the title track to close things out strong. Good stuff!

Phil Derby, Electroambient Space (U.S.A.) - Click HERE to visit his website

Mac is one half of the Italian duo BIOnighT who gave us the sweet and melodious Egoheart. Black Light is as melodious, but with a darker side. An opus written in a difficult context where Mac shares his emotions for a black world.
An uncertain synthetic wave floats for a while before a stream of technological rock rhythm starts undulating on a beautiful bass sequence: Inadequate, old-fashioned percussions assume a circular tempo, wrapping invading synthetic layers as well as a beautiful play of keyboard where the notes circulate with limpidity and harmony.
Manmade Horrors continues its adrenalin-filled pace with a solitary sequence that drives an acrobatic rhythm. Another bass semibreve sequence is added, deepening a smoothly nervous rhythm on excellent floating synthetic pads. A contrast in rhythms, which charms and attracts.
A Deeper Pain is in keeping with the title, with a nostalgic and bittersweet keyboard on a fluid bass sequence. In constant rotation, synths weep in a spiral that embellishes its sequence with sober percussions towards the final.
Waiting for Winter to End is a superb title of great sensitivity. On drafts of violin mellotron synth, piano keys traverse a nostalgic breath with tenderness and bitterness.
Trying to Understand takes again the sequential road with style. A whirling synth carves the atmosphere of its wavering forms. It intertwines with a daring sequencer that undulate a languorous tempo among synthetic bird cries. Synth solos spin around into a heavy ambiance that explodes on rolling and vaporous sequential percussions. A moment intensely delicious, subjugated by an aggressive virtual guitar and a ghostly synth. A great track, one of the best I've heard lately.
It is with a thundering and lugubrious sequential line that Scars takes off. We enter into the dark portion of Black Light. Static, the atmosphere is drowned by a synth with obscure breaths that struts like a violin played by a gnome on a minimalist sequence that stops its stoical pulse on a synthetic breath suspended in mid air.
The obscure spirit of Black Light continues with If I Have To, where a big guitar riff stretches its growls while crossing an undulating sequence of swaying notes. As on Trying to Understand, the percussions mould an infernal rhythm where riffs and sequences whirl bitterly to die out on alleviating synthetic layers.
Intense atmospheric passages continue on Blade of Loneliness.
All Wrong goes back to the sequential road with a heavy staccato passage that varies its measure on the pulsing of aleatory rhythms, full of strident synthetic breaths, like Redshift do. Intense and percussive.
The title track (Black Light) caps this opus with a heavy metallic wind that shelters a tribal percussions sequence, which whirls around heavy chords vibrating of intensity in a cosmic sea.
Black Light by Mac of BIOnighT is a powerful album, one of the best works in 2006. Mac offers us 10 tracks very different from one another, but inter-connected by a heavy and at the same time melodious atmosphere. A mix between Redshift and Robert Fox. All simply superb.

Sylvain Lupari, Guts of Darkness (France) Click HERE to visit their website

Quality class Berliner Schule and analogue sounding style of Electronic music. The listener gets the feeling that all notes and harmony are there where they should be. The sequencing and drums are well designed and not just random-picked and "calling it improvised" as you can hear in some other Berliner Schule music. Mac of bionight is for me a composer/arranger/producer who knows how achieve his sound & scapes. This is not a sound-a-like-album! Originality comes thru your speakers and the overall sound quality is very good. Gently stereo-sounding experience and smooth, but powerful tones all over the spectrum. A real must-have for all EM-enthusiasts.

René van der Wouden, musician (The Netherlands) Click HERE to visit his website

Again I was lucky enough to receive two CD's from this very well talented musician on the EM scene. Mac can easily be described as someone who certainly knows his way around in writing /mixing music in a home studio environment. There's no doubt that we are dealing with an artist who expresses himself thru music and who's capable of finding the right composition/melodies for his inner moods. Another very strong aspect is his sequencing ability; there are some sequencing lines in his tracks that deserve to be called fantastic.

Black Light tells us a very personal story about Mac during a period when he was 'struggling'. It's true that music can keep you sane in difficult periods, and there are many people who get out of a troubled period thru their interest in arts/music.
Inadequate is a good starter, and Manmade Horrors is built around smooth sequencing with no drums. A Deeper Pain is a very soulful 'building' track, the guitar like sound is a winner, and with drums starting after around five minutes this track has it all. Waiting for Winter to End is chilling without drums, the pads are snowy landscapes and tiny crystals tumble out of the sky, very subtle and well laid out track. Trying to Understand drags you into a Sorcerer-like landscape at night, quality sequencing like TD in that particular movie, dark and occasionally on the edge of insanity! Scars is made without drums, this piece is music story telling and it’s entertaining from the first till the last note. One of my favourites. If I Have To starts with a hard-rock like intro until the lighter sequences take over, the guitar comes back later and makes this track a unique piece with some mixed emotions supported by fx power drums. Blade of Loneliness is an ethereal, remarkable track and made of pure musical emotions. All Wrong takes every second of your attention, the sound palette/sequences changes smooth and this is again 'Mac' sequencing at his best. Black Light starts nice and chaotic until the sequences roll in, the higher sounds show some classic influences here and this is truly a worthy ending to a very good CD that represents a strong creative outburst.

Godfried Stockman, musician (Belgium) Click HERE to visit his website