Info Arctic Summits - Netherworld 
"Over The Summit"
by Netherworld
Glacial Movements (GM009)
"Iceblink [Aurora Borealis Mix]"
"Over The Summit"
"Crystallized Words"

Netherworld 's URL

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fn issue April 2011
'Tsukubai' - Mathieu Ruhlmann
'"rivages sur l'antipode"' - d'incise
'Crossing Of Shadows' - orchestra maxfieldparrish
'Tactile.Surface' - Luigi Turra & Christopher McFall
'Lack Affix' - Nicholas Szczepanik & Juan José Calarco
'Lignes d’erre & Randons' - Kassel Jaeger
'Zeltini' - Revenant



Alessandro Tedeschi is best known to the ambient fraternity as Netherworld, the result of a string of deep ambient releases on Oöphoi's label Umbra in the mid-2000s. For the past five years, he has also run the Italian ambient label Glacial Movements, successfully maintaining a clearly defined focus on the polar wilderness through an international roster of electronic musicians. Furthernoise reviewed Mørketid, his first CD on his own label, and late last year he released Over The Summit, the second Netherworld album on Glacial Movements. Again the sound world remains arctic, empty and icy. Layers of long, near featureless tones, echo like wind currents on a frozen plain, punctuated by the smallest grains of sound that Tedeschi collected from the far north and other wild places.

Netherworld's stated working method is to start from tiny fragments of classical music, various field recordings and found sounds that are then manipulated and processed into evocative polar silences. On Over The Summit, he specifies that many of the original sounds come from the aurora borealis, the mysterious northern lights that have fueled human imagination for centuries. Forearmed with this knowledge, the listener might wonder about the little rattles in "Iceblink" and the grit in "Thoughts Locked In The Ice"; without it, they focus the attention without diminishing the mystery.

Tedeschi's music is very different from other well known isolationists like Thomas Köner (who also has a forthcoming album on Glacial Movements) in that he layers sound into soft, lush harmonies. Short melodic loops form the core of "Aurora performs its last show" and "Iceblink", which are tempered by the overt sweetness of a distant radio news broadcast in the first, and a series of indistinct noises that become quite strong in the second. One of the more prominent layers in "Crystallized Words" is an extended plaintive melody, but here too it's difficult to hear the muffled conversation in the background, while little gleams of high overtones, an aural borealis, sparkle between the phrases. The title track treats the space between the channels as its metaphorical summit, with long tones crossing from one side to the other. By the end, each channel is distinct, overlapping tones create disjointed harmonies at a relatively brisk pace. Despite the romantic surface calm, Netherworld's touches of grit provide a surreal undercurrent in his ever-shifting arctic splendor.

Review by Caleb Deupree

 

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