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26/04/2024 : HYBRYDS - Mythopia, the sequel

HYBRYDS

Mythopia, the sequel

MusicCD / Digital
Ethereal / Heavenly VoicesTribal / Ritual
3rioart
26/04/2024, Xavier KRUTH

In 2022, Hybryds – the Belgian project of Sandy Nys, aka Maghtea – released the beautiful 'Mythopia'. While Hybryds has always been experimental, this was a fairly innovative album, exploring more dreamy sounds and atmospheres that took on almost fairy-tale dimensions with the vocals of two nymphs – long-time singer Madeline Arndt, joined by the newer but equally remarkable Katharina Galgareipi. I remember the live performance of 'Mythopia' at the Porta Nigrafestival in Aarschot, and I was absolutely blown away by the magical performance. I bought the CD immediately, of course.

Then in January 2024, the next album came out: 'Mythopia, the sequel'. Magthea was also kind enough to send me a printed CD-r of the album, with very beautiful - and as always, quite erotically tinged - artwork. Since I'm not the fastest to review new releases, he sent me an extra download of the same album in April, not only to put extra pressure on me, but also because he had added extra material to the album. Well, why not? And when we hear that Peter De Koning aka TraumaSutra and Peter Geysels have also played on the album, including the new extras, we are usually quite curious.

A first observation is that 'the sequel' does not consist at all of remixes of the original 'Mythopia', but of new material. Perhaps Magthea wanted to continue working under this title because it so well reflects the atmosphere in which he is currently working with Hybryds. But make no mistake, at the same time the man with Rabbits Wear Boots also makes uncompromising dance music, as my colleague Kurt Ingels clearly described in his review of 'No Style No Roots' - which came out at the same time as this 'Mythopia, the sequel'.

A second observation is that 'the sequel' contains fairly hard drum sounds, so more emphasis on the rhythms, than its predecessor. Let that be a return to the ritual and tribal aspect that has characterized Hybryds' music for forty years now. Because this group has indeed been around since 1986! These rhythms need not be a negation of the dreamy aspect that I loved so much on the first 'Mythopia' album, because they go hand in hand with the angel vocals of Madeline and Katharina and with a lot of atmospheric sounds, so that the whole thing still sounds just as magical. The sound is very full, and although it is not always easy to distinguish the contribution of the two Peters in this ocean of sounds, I am sure that the gentlemen have added an extra dose of madness and chaos to the album.

Let me not beat around the bush. Anyone who loved 'Mythopia' will want to have this album anyway. Anyone who does not know 'Mythopia' but is curious after reading my description - with recurring terms such as magical, fairy-tale, dreamy, angel vocals, ocean of sound, madness and chaos - I can only recommend listening to both albums carefully. Ultimately, you have to make up your own mind, but I hope that after listening to them you will agree with my description.

Overall, 'Mythopia, the sequel' is a worthy successor to the first album, and a must-have for fans of Hybryds and dreamy, atmospheric music.

Xavier KRUTH
26/04/2024


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