On the surface, Kishar is a journey through the natural soundscapes of Scotland and Iceland, but below the surface, it’s much more than that. In a literal sense, the album investigates the properties of what lies beneath the earth, from geyser to lava spring. But it also exposes the fury of noise. The closer one comes to a waterfall or volcano, the more one realizes that nature possesses the ability to drown out all competing sound. Kishar draws ever closer to the edge, curiously peering, dangling and finally falling in.
It’s impossible to hear such recordings in the modern era and not to root for the environment. After all the damage we’ve done, politicians have managed to deny any impact, like spousal batterers claiming the bruises are incidental. And yet the planet ~ referred to by James Lovelock as the living organism Gaia ~ seems prepared to strike back. We are seldom brave enough to make a connection between “natural disasters” and our own interference, but when one hears the earth this angry, one begins to reevaluate one’s position.
Luca Nasciuti‘s soundscapes scrape and roar, rumble and surge, the polar opposite of what most expect to encounter in field recordings. Their internal dynamism sets Kishar apart from others of its genre. The original recordings have been altered in a manner that mirrors humanity’s effect on the land, while the raw emotion reflects the volatility of the current debate. Only the opening seconds of flowing water seem pure before the pollution sets in. In this encounter, we are the noise.
We say these words infrequently: turn it up. But this tape needs to be played loud. This is the only way to experience its literal and metaphorical nuances. We do, however, recommend that one not play this loudly on a headset, as it will likely induce damage ~ which may also serve as a metaphor, but not in the intended sense. Instead, let it fill the living space with depth and resonance, like the raging fire of “Under your skin I cannot touch” or the volatile winds of Fljotstunga, heard “Though the core of your chest”. This 22-minute closer travels far into the red: red lava, red anger, red decibels, red destruction. The swath of sound swirls from speaker to speaker, the listener caught in the maelstrom, the tornado sonics inspiring awe. A secondary wonder is present at the end of these storms, as the birds seem to survive intact, emerging from their shelters, perhaps dreaming of a day when the humans lie strewn across the landscape and the planet is once again theirs. (Richard Allen)
Man does not weave this web of life. He is merely a strand of it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself. ~ Chief Seattle