Music Reviews

Artist: Maile Colbert (@)
Title: Come Kingdom Come
Format: CD
Label: Two Acrons (@)
Rated: *****
The "Ouverture" for the so-called Dies Irae (the Day of Anger, which should the biblical Last Judgement), which somehow reminded me of the very first moments of Mozart's "Requiem Mass in D Minor" (K 626) besides electronic sounds and modified field recordings, introduces listeners in an experimental opera, whose mode of expression counterbalances a conceptual framework, which is so recurring and overworked that could sound banal. The most relevant aspect of this release, named after the notorious invocation "Come, Kingdom Come", is the intersection of sonic skills by intermedia artist Maile Colbert, who is currently director of Cross the Pond, an organization based on arts and cultural exchange between US and Portugal and contributes by her own writings on Acoustic Ecology and Sound Studies at "Sounding Out", and the celestial voice of classically trained soprano Gabriela Crowe under Colbert's direction with contributions by Christophe Giraud aka Tellemake, singer Jessica Constable and RUi Costa's electronics, who dabble in a sort of sonic exegesis of "The Book of Revelations", which got turned into a sort of score as well as a source for inspiration. The transfusion of apocalyptic and millenialism-related themes into clots of Latin medieval monophonic chant, instrumental suppurations, subcortical harmonies, ancestral calls, lyrical contributions by poet Ian Colbert, psychotic reversed sounds and a number of befitting field recordings such as the ones grabbed before, during and after natural disasters, VLF recordings of sun storms while hitting Earth's magnetosphere, bird calling from endangered species, the other-worldly quiet in Chernobyl, the seismic activity of an earthquake and so on, makes the listening experience constantly fluctuate between mystical nuances and thin apprehension, exstacy and anxiety, longing and catharsis, which cannot but come to a conclusion which refers to the end of time by means of barely audible raptured chants and agonizing sounds.

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