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These two savory smoking guys are the core members of the obscured ethno-psychedelic and proto-space-rock band KALUTALIKSUAK (the name of the malicious though dull-witted goddess of Ice in Eskimos mythology). From left to right: Vladimir ⌠Lord■ Konovkin (keyboards, synthesizers, electronics) and Alexander ⌠Kotei■ Chuvakov (guitars, bass, assorted instruments, electronics). Other members whose names were lost in time replaced each other from concert to concert. In 1992-1995, this psychedelic commune made quite a hit with the young Moscow non-conformists but like many of their contemporaries they were washed away by the flow of commercialized rock. No professional recordings were left from that time except of a few poor quality cassettes from spot-rehearsals.

It is strange enough, though never throwing up their musical exercises these exceptionally talented musicians choose to leave KALUTALIKSUAK in a deep shadow of underground instead of pushing their project to the light of public▓s admiration. Vladimir Konovkin who had a diploma of the Moscow Conservatory (classic tube organ) made a numerous appearances with local classically inspired blues and rock bands. In 2001, he accompanied on stage Rick Wakeman during his Russian tour. Alexander Chuvakov graduated the Russian Academy Of Fine Arts (painting). Nowadays, he regularly exhibits his paintings and earns a living as a professional artist and designer. Together, they also run a song-oriented group LUTCHSHE.

KALUTALIKSUAK / "Kalutaliksuak" (2007)
CD, R.A.I.G. (R021), 2007, jewel case
Category: Lo-fi, Space Rock
raigmusic [a t] hotmail.com
Mila Oks

6 tracks - 53'23":
1. They shall catch you up for sure / 8'00"
2. While he sits in ice cracking a whip around / 7'56"
3. What are your feet eating? / 6'36"
4. They usually eat humans / 5'35"
5. Crow-quill clothing / 9'35"
6. Put this suckling into her hood / 15'38"

  Bizarre band √ bizarre music. Stepping nicely beyond the conventional realms of harmony and melody, dissonance and power chords, KALUTALIKSUAK were creating aural excursions, exploring sonic landscapes by mixing composition and improvisation expertise. Though inspired by the Eskimo people mythology, they were defying tradition, time, and space. Explains band member Vladimir Konovkin: ⌠We▓re not an ethnic-fusion ensemble. Without vocals or with vocalization similar to northern shamans▓ senseless chanting, we tried to evoke specific images and emotions. From an instrumental perspective, we used a traditional electric rock-band palette of sound: guitars, keyboards, and drums. Because of certain difficulties with drummers, we often used straight synthesized rhythmic patterns during rehearsals.■ Something futuristic, something psychedelic, and a little bit warp from the norm, their music is much in the vein of the UK free festival scene. Textured keyboards interact with swirling and swishing phased guitars throughout the album, all the while underpinned by intuitive bass grooves and trance inducing repetitive electronic beats. The music has an amazingly hallucinatory cinematic quality that makes one go deeper into rarely explored space. The best parts of the band▓s poor quality 1992-93 rehearsal-tapes have been gathered together and re-mastered by Alisa Coral of SPACE MIRRORS after more than ten years of oblivion. Enjoy!

"If this work came out in the mid 90s during the second uprise of the Space-Rock genre, they would be celebrities now┘■ √ Alisa Coral (courtesy of Sleaszy Rider Records).


"Strange Russian Psychedelic-Krautrock-Avantgarde-Trio. Lots of keyboards/synthesizers, between weired/strange soundscapes and nice dreamy moods." √ by Dave Schmidt aka Sula Bassana of SULATRON (Austria) (June 2007).

"The first track -They Shall Catch You Up for Sure- begins with synthesizer soundscapes and gurgle. This is very psychedelic and experimental stuff. A weird track! -While He Sits in Ice Cracking a Whip Around- is a rather funny jam and its atmosphere reminds me of Hawkwind▓s Douglas in the Jungle a bit. The guitar has some funky feel. Another rather strange and dark number. The more well-defined, rather relaxed -What Are Your Feet Eating?- comes next including nice, light guitar work and also some vocals. This is a dreamy, excellent track with heavenly keyboards and a wah wah solo. -They Usually Eat Humans- has a really odd atmosphere. It is a psychedelic, slower and tangled track with some beat, clavinet, UFO sounds and vague guitar. The scary-sounding narration adds the feel of sci-fi/horror movies. -Crow-quill Clothing- has sequences and weird noises. This is the shortest track on the album and also possibly the weakest one, but still pretty nice, hallucinatory ambient. The 15:39 long -Put This Sucling inito Her Head- is a quit relaxed track with programmed drums. The airy keyboards bring in a bit of New Age-styled atmosphere, although this is much more psychedelic of course. The track has a guitar solo and sort of fusion stuff; after five minutes we hear some keyboard soloing. I▓m sort of reminded of Kitaro... I must say that Kalutaliksuak really was a rather unique band, and it▓s great that we now have the opportunity to hear their mostly instrumental, electronic freak-outs." √ by Dj Astro of PSYCHOTROPIC ZONE (Finland) (July 2007).

"Just when I was starting to forget that Russia actually has a music scene, I am confronted by Kalutaliksuak, a Russian trio that violates the rules of krautrock and space/progressive/psychedelic rock in their self-titled matryoshka album, possibly remastered in order to rub a significant part of their intended audience the wrong way. To clarify all misconceptions, I will commence by stating that the keyboards, drums, bass, and guitar immix into an unnatural sound, rather then working together to fight against conformism and standard conventions. With the album's length clocking in at just over 53 minutes, it is incredibly easy to lose focus; Kalutaliksuak thus threatens to turn into a snorefest rather than a cinematic piece of avant-garde-ish music. In 'They Shall Catch You Up For Sure', the band manages to set the stage for their horror production, a vacant set permanently awaiting its next five actors. Unfortunately, the action here unfolds sluggishly, as we are only able to witness a semi-climax at about the 6 minute point. Be that as it may, it still feels like the appropriate opener, comprising a somewhat logical summary of what▓s to come. If you need more proof that Kalutaliksuak is a record that exhibits its infinite pretentiousness by selecting quasi-metaphorical song titles, our next actor is Mr. 'While He Sits In Ice Cracking a Whip Around'. Indeed, having an interesting and mighty character, this song teaches us a lesson - proving the first taste might have been irrelevant, as this is, in reality, more of a album based in background sounds. As the synthesizers persist in meddling with the listener's peace of mind, this public display of ostentation goes forth to the wah-wah and delay dependent 'What Are Your Feet Eating' and to the forced 'They Usually Eat Humans' partial intermezzo. With its last two songs, Kalutaliksuak appears to eventually materialize, conducting a flurry of cinematic sentiment. While reiterating its same themes, the album somehow contrives to set up a sophisticated but weary mise en scene, in which the textured soundscape might be of interest to those looking for haunting and monotonous tracks. As for the rest, you should shy away from these six fraudulent third rate movie actors, as they will vicariously drain your attention span. To clarify all possible preconceptions, I will end by stating that Kalutaliksuak is nothing but a mere misunderstanding, being as hard to listen to as it is to pronounce its name. (Score: 5/10)" √ by Diana Sitaru of THE SILENT BALLET (USA) (August 2007).

The album was also reviewed at: CHOPSTICKS (Russia), DISAGREEMENT (Luxembourg).

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