A view of Hülser Berg

Today saw us take an afternoon bike ride through the countryside. We stopped off at a small pub and sat in the beer garden taking in the sun.

The view across the fields was of Hülser Berg – hardly a mountain as such, it is more a small hill; however, for this region it’s all we can boast.

Nevertheless, the surroundings are beautiful.

 

Hülserberg 1

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The lake of tranquility

The Elfrather lake or the “E-sea” as we call it around here, is a former gravel pit, which the city decided to fill with groundwater. After doing some research, I found out that the gravel was used during the building of Autobahn 57 at the beginning of the 1970s. The A57 is a not too far from the lake, but is hidden behind woodland areas.

Located on the outskirts of the city, it is a fantastic recreational area, drawing in the masses in the summer months. It is used by boating clubs and plays host to some of the city’s annual regattas.

Elfrather boasts a 2.3 kilometre (1.4 mile) long race track. Unfortunately, swimmers are not welcome here due to the regatta course and the people training in their boats.

Moreover, it is the home for an abundance of wild animals and birds. The Canada  Goose is a frequents visitor; although in my photograph they were all roosting.

Apart from this, you can walk around the lake and take in the splendid views as well as the peace and tranquility of the whole area. One more thing, it is perfect for photographers to capture nature.

Elfrather See

This is a shot I took at the end of the lake (or the beginning of it, depending on your position).

City park photos

Early evening in Krefeld Stadtwald. The light was slowly going, so I had to be quick.

 

Stadtwald Krefeld

Sunset

Yesterday evening’s sunset was such a beautiful event to witness. It marked the end of the day and the beginning of Spring.

 

Building site sunset 1

Taken with Canon 700D.

Landschaftspark Duisburg-Nord – an amazing derelict industrial site

What an evening.

We traveled with friends to Landschaftspark Duisburg Nord, a disused foundry that has been turned into a public park. It really is a fantastic place: at dusk they turn on an array of lights to transform the smelting works, pipes, coal storage areas, hoppers and loading cranes into another world.

It turns out that the lighting design was put together by none other than Jonathan Park, who was renowned for creating light shows for Pink Floyd and a whole host of stars. Of course, throughout the year there are events, concerts, and other shows; moreover, one of Germany’s main alpine clubs uses some of the structures for practicing.

When we set off on our walk, it was still light; but dusk soon fell.

All around the lights winked on, slowly illuminating our progress through the relics of a bygone age.

Some corners were quite spooky; for example we walked down an array of long tunnels, all sparsely illuminated. To the left and right we were able to look down into generator pits. Then, all of a sudden, sound effects of old machines were turned on. We half expected demons to come leaping out of the shadows.

Blue light-2

If you are a hobby photographer. it is really worth checking out the park.

Here are some more impressions.

Yellow tower

Rusty

Sunset

Walk way

Signs of life and musical adventures begin again

After a long hiatus, I have decided to try and post some regular music or writing content to see if I can revive my interest in the world of blogging.

I suppose before we set up our own company I was possessed with a wealth of creative energy to put something out into the world and show people what I could and can do in terms of creativity. Sadly, I had to suspend these dreams due to an ever growing number of responsibilities, i.e. co-running our company.

However, I feel the need to get back into the saddle and try to rediscover that potential for creative energy, whether it be short stories or sound snippets.

Over the weekend I set myself the task of creating background music for some Facebook posts. Everything started well. However, what started life as a short piano piece turned out to be the foundation for a piece that goes in a totally different musical direction to what I had planned.

Within the realms of creativity, one must strive to let ideas flow, and in this case I heard another song take shape. Thus, I began layering up synth sounds to bring forth a groove, somehow reminiscent of industrial bands. This led to me taking out the NS-Stick to develop a rich heavy sound to compliment the groove: Bliss was the result.

Even though it is only a sound space idea, I will use it to develop further ideas in this direction.

I hope you like it. DO feel free to comment and offer any advice as to changes that could be made.

Enjoy.

Peter Gabriel live in Cologne

He’s still at it, and doing it very well.

Peter Gabriel is one of the all time masters of emotional and rhythmic music. He’s been pushing the boundaries of modern music for many years, and last night’s concert in Cologne was a prime example of his mastery of music and staggering stage presence.

For many people, he is known for combining western music with an array of tribal rhythms to give his music that special something: derived from around the world, these imbue and enrich his music with a diverse tapestry of beats and harmonies. It is fascinating to see the band execute trance-like rhythms – often in the intros – that get the audience gyrating to the grooves.

Last night, the band were on form and delivered a breathtaking performance.

However, I had one minor criticism with the overall sound: for me, the bass was not high enough, and was very often “consumed” by Manu Katché’s bass drum and other low frequencies. The more quieter elements, however, where Tony Levin’s upright came into play, were perfect: his passion for the instrument came to the fore when married with Peter Gabriel’s piano pieces.

David Rhodes (who celebrated his birthday yesterday) was in great form too. Even though he is a more “subtle” player, tending to layer sounds and embellish the music with funky chops and blistering sustained notes that hang in the air for an eternity, he is a master of grooves and effects.

Peter’s voice was amazing: all I had to do was close my eyes and he transported me back to the 80’s again. I find it satisfying to see him in action and am pleased that he hasn’t lost any of those vocal nuances. He may have put on a few pounds, but his vocal prowess still holds it own.

Accompanied by two ladies from Stockholm, Jennie Abrahamson http://jennieabrahamson.com and Linnea Olsson, he delivered what everyone has come to expect from him. In fact, the two ladies opened the show with some of their own solo material.  Snowstorm, the opening song, was ethereal and had a very “Gabriel” feel to it. Check it out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUNnwR3nZlk

When they played Don’t Give Up, Jennie Abrahamson’s voice was a perfect substitute for what Kate Bush had created so many years ago. The crowd went crazy when she sang the chorus.

I would encourage everyone to check out the two ladies.

Here are some photos that Linnea Olsson uploaded form last night’s gig:http://www.linneaolsson.net/

This is one of her songs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqknD5pelck

All in all, a fantastic evening.
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