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MP3 Igneous Flame - Hydra

Darkly Luminous ambience

11 MP3 Songs
ELECTRONIC: Ambient, ELECTRONIC: Soundscapes

''HYDRA'' is the sixth album by Pete Kelly AKA Igneous Flame.
It is a departure from his recent ambient guitar soundscapes, returning to darker and more ethereal territories, as explored
on his earlier albums.
Some tracks incorporate spatial ‘effects’ and include binaural environmental recordings, that are best experienced with headphone listening.


Review by John Shanahan for the June edition of ''Hypnagogue''

Igneous Flame, Hydra

I appreciate Pete Kelly, the man behind Igneous Flame, for the way in which he actively and constantly reinvents his musical identity. I was first exposed to his music with the drone-based depths and warmth of Oxana, then rode along with him as he brought his guitar to the forefront while keeping the drones going in Satu. Next up was the meditative Astra, where the guitar was more evident in its own form. Now, on his latest release, Hydra, Kelly has pared his sound down to long, evocative drone-based washes dripping with shadowy tones to create a disk perfect for low-volume continuous play—while, as always, bringing great rewards and aural detail to deep listening. The disk opens with “Selene,” where vocalist Mary Whitaker’s ululating chants glide like an invocation over Kelly’s grim, rough-edged sound-textures. “Heart of Darkness” is a short, sound-packed piece with a slightly unnerving edge. “Colour My World” fades—no pun intended—into a quiet backdrop of whispered rumor. Watery burbles accent the motion. This is a beautifully understated track. In “Elemental Energy,” Kelly gets down to the bare bones of ambient, where sense supplants tone and musicality, and effect is everything. And here the effect is grimly hypnotic. Liquid drops in cavern pools and a faraway suggestion of thunder tint the atmosphere. Truly one of the highlights of the disk. The shadows finally recede slightly at the initial warm touches of “Book of Shadows” and carries through the glistening tones of “Vitreous Flow” and "Air-Burst." The only semblance of a beat on this disk appears briefly and appropriately in the vividly atmospheric “Batholith.” If you can’t feel the atmospheric pressure growing as you descend into the murk and cold of the unexplored sea, you’re not really listening. There’s an amazing shift in tone toward the end, and all my mind’s eye could see is being cut adrift and falling, tumbling slowly into the abyss with a relieved acceptance of fate and wonder. Mary Whitaker''s voice returns quietly on the closing track, "Hecate," which completes the Hydra journey in superbly understated, completely calming manner.

Hydra is the kind of disk that leaves you anxiously expecting more from the artist. Bravo, Mr. Kelly. I must make Hydra yet another Igneous Flame Hypnagogue Highly Recommended CD.

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