[Reviewed by Iaha Crax]
Far from being just a musical entity, Halo Manash designates a spiritual congregation formed by individuals with similar representations of reality. Their musical creations are merely a prolongation of a concept having its roots in a sacred elemental world. An album and furthermore a track from the respective record is meant to materialize aspects pertaining to the multiple tentacles of the infinite possibility of being. Every detail bears an ineluctable significance: time of composition, place and ambiance of the recording, interpreters/ medium’s state of mind. Halo Manash brings along the sacred into the profane.
Thus, this performance music is all the more adventurous and even obnoxious to defalcate as its intertextuality is practically limitless. Technically, the first track, “Kwlwsta”, plays on a repetitive organ-like theme (a Bach extended toccata reaching early Mortiis digital lullaby), adorned with mystic sounds of some antique and rare bow and wind instruments. This is where words lose their sufficiency, taken away by the purgative tension of music. The sense of dissolution rapidly gains power on the mind, that is no longer able to control the appearance.
Undoubtedly every dark-ambient listener has had the curiosity to become acquainted with Halo Manash and the other groups at Helixes. My first audition of “Syoma” had a massive hypnotic impact and even today it is still for me a reference to the progression of this musical genre. Since then Halo Manash transformed their style and reached a perfectly balanced state of rarefication. They not only compose music, but extract it from internal sources transforming their findings into ear-fitting sounds. “Varjoista”, the second track, moves with a naturalness and a specificity more common to a blooming miracle or to the sparkling of a source in the mountains. Drums accompany these movements and visions of reshaping spatiality and a horn-like instrument depicts their breathing tide.
When someone captures on record the simple sound of fire and crackling wood or other such voices of the night, this may cause the rise of a brow. However such live recordings presented in a personalized packaging as Halo Manash always did, are intended to offer to the auditory a real slice of the authentic performance and some of the energy captured during those moments. “Tulelle”, the final and longest track, is a recording of a seemingly spiritual posture near fire and water. A deep-bass background accentuates the stillness of the dark here and there, suddenly torn by the roosting firewood.
I assisted to an Arktau Eos performance in Bucharest (the group including a member of Halo Manash). This should be a relevant parallel to marginally complete the tableau of a Halo Manash record, because Helixes groups, as I’ve said before, treat music as a major component of a larger and deeper concept of whose themes one can only debate. If you do not receive enough hints by the disc’s imagery or you remain reluctant to the subtle energies the sound should evoke on you, then this audition will stay nothing but a pleasant decorative ambiance. But if the stars align and these “lunar hymns” pervade your spirit completely, the magic will work.