Kali Malone has made her name by pushing right at the edges of what is traditionally considered music. Distinctly post-minimal in approach, her sound pulls apart structure, rhythm, and tone and often blurs the lines between performance and art installation.
Does Spring Hide Its Joy represents some of her most ambitious work. A collaboration between herself, Sunn O))) guitarist Stephen O’Malley and fellow performer/programmer Lucy Railton, the nine-track, two-hour piece was written in and designed for empty concert halls. As such, it’s a piece of work that feels almost sculptural in its sense of scope and purpose. Collapsing the notion of regimented song structure and linear composition, the music expands to fill empty space like a fog, moving unexpectedly and organically between cello, sine waves and electric guitar.
As this is music specifically designed to explore how sound interacts with space, in some ways putting Does Spring Hides Its Joy onto a three-vinyl was never going to do the work justice. Try as I might, the experience of listening to it through headphones while lying on a sofa doesn’t hit in quite the same way as witnessing it echo out through an abandoned cold war bunker. My advice: try and experience it in real life first and buy the record in the gift shop. [Note: Oskar Jeff’s review of the Kali Malone live show in our new issue confirms this – it was pretty special. Preorder your copy here.]
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