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Byron Metcalf & Mark Seelig — Kali Raga
(Projekt no#, 2024, DL)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2024-02-19

Kali Raga Cover art

The tribal ambient sounds of this magnificent duo are always a welcome deep dive into spiritual realms, like two guides illuminating a path out of the cold darkness toward the warm morning sun. We have covered several previous releases by Metcalf and Seelig: Persistent Visions from a few years ago comes to mind immediately, but there was Intention a few years before that, and both have blessed us with numerous collaborations with others as well, in fact I believe my first exposure to Metcalf was his 2000 collaboration with Steve Roach titled The Serpent’s Lair. Here on Kali Raga. Metcalf plays frame drums, rattles, shakers, clay pots and ceremonial drums, while Seelig plays bansuri flutes and provides overtone vocals. But there is a third collaborator here as well, and regular Exposé readers willl know him well, Paul Casper a.k.a. Frore plays all manner of synthesizer (analog, digital and modular) on all of the album’s six tracks, providing engaging background textures and hypnotic dreamlike structures that offer a mysterious soundworld for Metcalf and Seelig to weave in and out of as each piece proceeds. Frore’s frequent collaborator Shane Morris is here as well, but only on one track “Legacy” providing virtual tabla. With a total playtime of a little over an hour, the listener will discover many moments of high energy tribal shamanic power, but also a deep meditative spirit abounds by virtue of Seelig’s bansuri flutes, each pulling the listener in slightly different directions as they proceed down the path. The effect is dreamlike and mesmerizing, something akin to the soundtrack to a shimmering journey through a magical world, every spin providing new discoveries that went unnoticed on previous plays.

Filed under: New releases, 2024 releases

Related artist(s): Byron Metcalf, Mark Seelig, Shane Morris, Frore (Paul Casper)

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