Tag Archives: Kalte

Kalte – The Lanthanide Series

I couldn’t control myself and couldn’t help reviewing another brilliant Kalte’s album, called “The Lanthanide Series”, released on Stasisfield label in distant 2008. It appears to be first release in their discography. I must again repeat, that Kalte’s ambient is closely connected with different fields of science, and “The Lanthanide Series” is not an exception, even on the assumption of the album’s title. Lanthanides are rare-earth elements, representatives of which are shown on the inner cover picture. The opening “Shallow Approach”, full of ringing, oscillating drones, is just like the introduction in a scientific document, a kind of overview in a exploration report. “Spagyric”, a stream-oriented, dark piece, with some sort of radionoise, or interruptions, may relate to alchemic processes, maybe during which the mentioned lanthanides were born. “Mariana Arc” may refer to a plate tectonic convergent boundary, located somewhere in the region of Philippine Sea and Pacific Ocean; the music is anxious, as if implying the danger, concealing under water surface. “Bremsstrahlung” is a track, describing some radiation phenomena, “when an electrically charged particle, especially an electron, is slowed down by the electric field of an atomic nucleus or an atomic ion”, as the Lingvo puts it. the final track, “Alfvenwave” refer to solar physics; it is the lateral magnetohydrodynamic wave, spreading along filed lines of the magnetic field. Thus, very complicated things are introduced by Kalte, the obscured phenomena and processes, which exist in spite of the fact, that we don’t see them. Thanks to this band for their dedication to popularizing science and broadening our mental horizons, together with the pleasure of listening to their huge, massive drone ambient works. So, remember the periodic table with
Kalte’s “The Lanthanide Series”.

Kalte’s official site

“The Lanthanide Series” on Stasisfield label

Kalte – Fissures

Again Dean Hughes and Rik MacLean from the earlier reviewed here band Kalte decided to bring some happiness with their new album “Fissures”, released on Petcord label. And again Kalte draws our attention to scientific spheres; “Chemiosmosis”, “Polyphyletic”, “Harbig-Haro Object”, “Hadopelagic”, “Asthenosphere” – all these geologic and biologic terms are the conceptual units of the album, which seeks for our proximity to natural phenomena, that we don’t keep in mind, as they are so continuous or unapparent. Now, let’s proceed to the music itself. The tracks are distinguished by their monumentalness and majesty: low-tone drones, gradually exfoliating into different layers of sounds; seeming permanence, which vanishes, if we look at it “from the bird’s eye view”, for the music is rather vivid and versatile. The album has various textures – from solid to coarse- and fine-grained, with distinct skeletons and components, as if it is the product of scientific research and experiments, or a the fact of a scientific discovery. The impression of depth, darkness and coldness is created here. So, enter Kalte’s laboratory with their deep, Hadopelagic sound of “Fissures”.

“Fissures” on Petcord label

Kalte’s official site

Kalte – Glaciations

Kalte is a duet of Deane Hughes and Rik MacLean, musicians from Toronto, Canada; the place, where they live and create, is totally connected with such notions and phenomena, as “frost”, “winter”, “ice” and “cold”, and probably these climate peculiarities influenced their musical activity, even the name of the project – “Kalte” is derived from the German word for “frost”, or “coldness”. One of their album, which I want to review, is called “Glaciations”. The starting point is “Obliquity” – a ringing drone, a modified sound of presumably metal or glass nature; obliquity means a deviation from a norm, and in the context of this album, it may be the temperature deviation, which, perhaps, leads to glaciation, as a result of the climate change. This track is distinguished by its increasing loudness and power, it has a subsequent structure; at first, comes the quiet part, then – anxious part, and the last – the final phase, where an impression of completeness and inevitability is evident. The mechanism of glaciation is launched. Everything is plunged in frost and darkness. “Svalbard” is a piece, that describes through the sound the atmosphere of an archipelago in the Arctic, a very picturesque part of Norway.  You hear some something like howlings, and the rythmic picture of the track resembles the sea breakers – unhurried, but full of natural force. Frankly speaking, after listening to this composition and having paid attention to the mentioned group of islands, I wished to visit this place. “Heezen-Tharp” is an ambient piece, which may be associated with two American geologists – Bruce Charles Heezen and Marie Tharp, who collaborated in mapping the ocean floor. Heezen is also a name for an Antarctic glacier, situated on the Antarctic Peninsula. “Heezen-Tharp” is full of different tinklings, clanks and sullen drones. “Luminosity Function” is a track, where you can observe a transition from low quality drone with crackles and semblance of interference to capturing organ drone. And the last item is “Chemotrophs”. In fact, chemotrophs are peculiar organisms, that get energy from redox reactions. The enchanting sounding is also of low bitrate, and fine-grained texture, as if consisting of protozoa, which  move to and fro in the oceanic bouillon. As you can see, every track has its history and sense background, and listening to the whole album reminds me of solving a riddle with making juxtapositions, uniting various elements into one conceptual system. For me, this investigation was a true pleasure. So, put on warm clothes and enter the icy world of Kalte’s “Glaciations”.

Kalte’s “Glaciations” on Dark Winter label: http://darkwinter.com/dw056.html
Kalte’s official site: http://www.kaltemusic.com/