Total time: 67:47
Written in 1993, Kingdom of Light is the 2nd work of INDRA’s catalogue to be dusted and re-edited. It’s also INDRA’s most popular album before his music crosses the Romanian borders. We are discovering a 2nd album to rhythms surrounded by very nice orchestral arrangements. Rhythmic structures where tempos are mainly moved by an impetuous synth, exception made of ‘Rustic Pictures’ and ‘Malini’, a little as Schulze made it on albums such as Totem and Picture Music but with more musicality and suave orchestral arrangements.
‘Sequence’ opens Kingdom of Light with arpeggios which sparkle in suspension on a strange muttering to eclectic consonances. Atonal and without rhythm, ‘Sequence’ is livened up by a bass line which implodes delicately beneath the fusion with a hybrid synth which frees beautiful violin strings and a mellotron mist which encircle the delicate arpeggios and fine lyrical solos.
Poetic and oniric, ‘Waving’ is a strange track where the rhythm is trapped by heavy violin synth layers. The whole thing starts with warm breezes of a mellotron synth which dance and spin, awakening fine percussion with anvil tones. A slow rhythm which has difficulty in taking its flight, gobbled up by an amalgam of twinkling arpeggios, astral choirs and slow floating layers begins to shape a melody from which sparklingly binds itself to percussions and to fine sequential rosaries which shell their chords upright beneath the breaths of the synth. Sequences hammer, while spinning, an indefinable rhythm getting mislaid in heavy synth layers which waltz and float so intensely as the sequential movement. Refusing to release the rhythm, ‘Waving’ sings the serenity with powerful orchestral arrangements, so making forgotten the cadence which formerly hammered the rhythm of glass, where synth layers multiply and sing beneath hypnotic percussion to tones of anvil.
A synth of shrill breaths awakens the third track ‘Rustic Pictures’ which already embraces waltzing layers of an extremely musical synth, while percussion fall and lead an intense orchestral movement freeing its heavy violin layers. Waves to harmonious variances, as quixotic violins, of which strings team up in an abstracted choir with winds as discreet as delicate which melt in a rhythmic permutation, where the percussion pound a rhythm lost in space, time and reverie. Towards half-time, ‘Rustic Pictures’ enters an atonal phase where synth solos whistle among choirs which sing in a mellotron mist. Then the drums come too and their skins resound over the solos humming a beautiful and delicate melody which leads us to the finale of this very beautiful piece of music.
Caustic synth waves and a cold wind livens up the first breath of ‘Ciuleandra’. An atonal but lively intro due to its very lyrical synth which blows an odd spiritual ode. The first violins sing beneath percussion and felted pulsations, guiding ‘Ciuleandra’ towards a wonderful Romanian folk theme. A theme which goes, accentuating the pace on great orchestral arrangements and ends in a long silence, preparing the life of ‘The Mountains’ which wakes up with such an enchanted forest by a very beautiful tone, at once virginal and springlike. A fine stationary rhythm, as a fragile dragonfly, takes shape with fine sequences to xylophone tones which swirl for a moment to espouse the spheres of influence of a synth always as so charmer and innocent as the first breaths of ‘The Mountains’. A synth from which light winds and movements roam in this enchanted forest with an atonal but musical life.
After an intro of eclectic tones with oriental fragrances, ‘Malini’ embraces a caustic atonal phase before hatching of a warm sequential movement which waves beneath metallic echoing reverberations. Strongly inspired by Schulze’s structures, ‘Malini’ evolves with sequences which switch delicately in accordance with a structure that become warmer, where violin layers still float in an ambiance of Asiatic feast.
Written in 2008, ‘Nymbus’ is out of key considering the serene and oniric ambiance of Kingdom of Light with a nervous and jerky structure which leans on good drum beatings. Playing between its stroboscopic approach and some atmospheric wanderings to majestic ambiances, ‘Nymbus’ offers a great rhythmic permutation at around the 8th minute with ascending sequences, resizing a constantly evolving tempo which turns in a long technoïd minimalist loop, fed by very good solos synth.
Kingdom of Light is doubtless the most orchestral album of INDRA. Rarely did I hear so much Mellotron and philarmonic tones on INDRA than on Kingdom of Light. But it doesn’t smear at all the Romanian synthesist’s propensity to compose soft and enchanting EM whose minimalism is used as premises to beautiful and subtle permutations in rhythms which are sometimes skilfully built on synth impetus. The mark of a great synthesist and music composer. And ‘Nymbus’, the bonus track, is simply sublime, even if it clashes from Kingdom of Light musical assembly. A composition which demonstrates that the creativity of INDRA is far from being dried up and that there is still a great deal of potential in its imagination.
Sylvain Lupari – Canada