These lo-fi despatches from the Italian rural underground pitch Caligine’s mist-wreathed guitar meditations against Gelba’s bleary field recording smudges.
Caligine’s three tracks are a trio of stretched and fried mantras, apocalyptic sonatas for the hollow men. On Acragas he lays down a righteous bed of drone across which his fuzzed lead lines draw ever tighter circles, a feverish shamanic journey downwards and inwards. Kill the cow. Punch the mirror.
Mura Di Ferro is the morning after the ritual, a calming hymn of plucked acoustic plucks and gentle chants. Ravi is more dislocated, offering up a burst of atonal guitar picking and deadened feedback before locking into a double-tracked psych-folk noodle.
Flip the tape and Caligine’s astral travelling gives way to Gelba’s abstract soundfields. Despite its comforting title, That Old Tale By The Side of the River is grim vibes incarnate, with repeated clankings, like some unidentified mechanical process, gradually overtaken by eerie buzzes and coos.
As the piece progresses, what sounds like pitchshifted voices – singing, shouting – jostle for space over wrangled fragments of bells and slide guitar. A warped downward spiral. Old tape decaying.
Its companion piece, A Silver Wind, is calmer, as if all the elements of that other track have been rubbed smooth, a pebble on the beach. Smooth surfaces, abstract whines. Towards the end, fragments of conversation become audible, echoing as if through some empty space or across the vast plains of memory.
There’s more Caligine goodness at Monstres par Exces…