Exposé Online banner

Kevin Kastning / Balász Major — Kismaros
(Greydisc GDR 3542, 2018, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2018-08-20

Kismaros Cover art

If I had to review this collaboration between Hungarian percussionist Balász Major and American guitarist Kevin Kastning in a single word, it would be “sparse.” Sparse in a good way, not thin or uneventful, but more of an introspective spacious world where each of the players gives the other plenty of expressive room to wander and create in real time. On the opening cut, “Kismaros I,” Major makes the first move, a gentle splash on cymbals, after which Kastning responds with a single chord, then Major continues, with Kastning responding with several notes on his 30-string, then a low tuned hand drum finds its way into the mix, until both players find a telepathic way forward together, eventually developing a live groove that the listener can wrap their ears around. Neither player is ever crowded out by the other, there is always plenty of room for even the most subtle sounds to be heard. Almost nine minutes later, the piece winds down to darkness, and the next one begins in a similar fashion. Kismaros is a series of seven long tracks that develop in a way similar to the first one just described, but each following a different path through the shady forest of gentle colors and dreamy expressive tones, punctuated by Major’s percussive telepathy, in the essence of primal musical communication. The compositions are happening in real time, with both of the players creating on the fly without any preconceived ideas going into it, just letting the spirirual flow of the sound happen at will, and in turn creating an all-enveloping fabric of sonic freedom. The urge to draw comparisons between this and earlier works involving Kastning, or even other artists is strong, but I won’t give into it, because Kismaros really is a unique experience.


Filed under: New releases, 2018 releases

Related artist(s): Kevin Kastning, Balász Major

More info
http://store.cdbaby.com/cd/kevinkastningbalazsmajor

Latest news

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

RandomK(e) - Waiting – It's probably most accurate to call RandomK(e) a Beijing-based band than a Chinese one, as all the members are foreigners living there. Since their start in 2004, the foursome has been one of the acts...  (2010) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues