Each month we shine the spotlight on one SoundGym member by reviewing one of their releases for our Music Spot feature. This month we focus on the Astral Beats EP by Cristián Rebolledo; otherwise known as ROM.
ROM, which stands for Read Only Music, released the three-track Astral Beats EP in January of this year. The arpeggiated synths, swelling pads and melancholic ear for melody across the three tracks evokes the time in music when Kraftwerk and Vangelis were dreaming up electronic future-scapes.
Opening track `Draco` is particularly reminiscent of early Vangelis in the way that it careers from stately electronica into frenetic orchestral manoeuvres and back again. `Giant Leap` follows this up with more sedately paced electronic soundscapes that recall Daft Punk at their most downbeat and emotional. Indeed, the EP is rounded off with `The Voyager`, a track whose title could easily be a tip of the hat
to the pioneering French house duo.
ROM doesn`t seem to be particularly keen to work within the sphere of modern EDM, however – the drums here verge on the `live` sounding and the pace is generally slower and more in keeping with the tempo set by the original 1970s pioneers of this musical style. This is a nostalgic, but nonetheless enjoyable journey.