CALIKA: Seedling Mother (Audiobulb Records)


Posted on Oct 3rd 2007 11:54 pm

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Calika: Seedling Mother

Seedling Mother
Audiobulb Records 2007
08 Tracks. 52mins00secs

Almost two years after his debut solo album, Small Talk Kills Me, and over a year and a half after his contribution to Benbecula’s Mineral Series (The Bright Spot), Brighton-based Calika returns with Seedling Mother, his sophomore effort, again released on Sheffield’s Audiobulb. Fresh from a second collaboration with legendary Seefeel/Disjecta musician Mark Clifford, following their 2005 Running Taper album, Kealoha concocts a confident collection of intricate electronic compositions.

Unlike on Small Talk, where only rarefied guitar (primarily acoustic) elements were used to adorn his sonic structures, Kealoha incorporates guitar and bass textures much more prominently on Seedling Mother, rendering his compositions with organic swathes and intentionally placing acoustic, electric and electronic sound sources so it occasionally feels as if he is accompanied by a live band. This is best demonstrated in the opening piece, No Hope But Everything, on the hectic 2 Quarters Make Half A Smile, with its echoes of Music Has Rotted One Note-era Squarepusher, or on the slightly claustrophobic Every Colour.

Elsewhere, while the constructions remain based on an intricate mix of real instruments, samples and electronics, the focus shifts to slightly more traditional electronic forms. The title track from instance is a complex piece which takes many forms during its four and a half minutes, but guitars are barely discernable, pushed far in the background, providing just a gentle hum for most of the track. On Two Tales Of Happiness, the mix is more contrasted and the backbone of the piece is clearly carved out of a plucked melody played on an acoustic guitar, but once again, electronic noises and sounds dominate here. With Mute and Fused, Kealoha generates much more nuanced soundscapes. The former is a slow moving eleven and a half minute atmospheric epic which sees Kealoha weaving loose sonic strands into spacious loops, and the latter, which closes the proceedings, while built around a similar template, proves a much lighter and concise offering.

With Seedling Mother, Simon Kealoha continues to affirm his place amongst contemporary electronic musicians. His tight concentration of acoustic and electronic is stronger and more confident here, as he pushes the envelop of Calika into new directions. Ultimately, Kealoha has produced with Seedling Mother an impressive follow up to Small Talk Kills Me and is positioning himself more firmly at the forefront of modern electronica.


Icon: arrow Calika | Audiobulb Records
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2 Responses to “CALIKA: Seedling Mother (Audiobulb Records)”

  1. Twoism2on 30 Oct 2007 at 9:04 pm

    Finally got around to this one, really solid album. Standout track is definitely “mute”.

  2. […] with his fourth full length slice of refined electro-acoustic in five year, his first album since Seedling Mother (Audiobulb, 2007), following the two EPs released last year, Crooked, once again on Audiobulb, and […]