Strom Noir ‎– Glaciology


[Reviewed by: Iaha Crax]

Glaciology comprises of four 4 tracks “for snow & ice”, and it is released through Zoharum Records. Strom Noir is a very productive project mastered by the Polish drone artist Emil Maťko, who has released about 11 discs so far, of which the last two, “Urban Blues” (on Zoharum) and “Esoptron”, have received very good reactions in the underground.

Emil uses electric and acoustic guitar, which are treated by effect pedals giving birth to a sort of ambient/ drone panorama that is both engaging and relaxing. “Névé” begins this record with a radiant implosion of massive sound, moving in and out in heavy structures and fading away in a sparkling, watery ambiance. Then “Firn” changes to a nocturnal register and the guitar chords transform into light-devouring holes.

The music developed by Strom Noir sweeps aside the psyche until reaches a place beyond verbal understanding, and challenges the imagination to let loose of one’s unsaturated mind. There are spaces which can be focused only by a certain musical texture, that this Slovakian artist understands how to depict them in a very influential way. Sometimes the music seems to go on free improvisation, like on “Penitentes”, where the musical line seduces by means of a play on volume and reverberation, in the absence of real rhythm; however, Emil has found the insides that the spirit needs to resonate on the background of this musical specter; the holes and recesses of the mind that absorb these frequencies and feed on them to enter a transitory state of somnambulism.

“Moréna” closes this 40-minute long record in a slow motion pipe organ tonality, increasing the loudness just enough so as not to alter the atmosphere. The structure is minimal at close view, but it enhances vertically the more you let yourself become imbued by its drones. At the same time, while at the beginning it was thick like a block of snow, it softens and melts along with the musical colors that become translucent and dissipate.

In the end, we are offered a bonus track, “Niekedy Sa Vracajú”, a version of a track from a cassette (Tanec Rusaliek).

“Glaciology” touches a warm mystery that has no meaning if analyzed. We cannot find any signification to such wonderful drones; they purely exist, they are really what they seem to be. It is a magic poetry which reminds of a Pessoa afterthought: “the color on the butterflies’ wings is the one that has a color”, and not the butterfly.

Strom Noir ‎– Glaciology
Zoharum, ZOHAR 090-2
CD/Digital 2015

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