A mysterious aura permeates the whole of Cassilda and Carcosa’s “On The Shores of Hali”. With such unique literary references embedded in the artist’s name and the EP itself, it is no surprise that the work defies easy categorization. The clear fondness of Planet Mu’s gentle, childlike melodies becomes readily apparent, as do the unique beats that help to propel the entire work forward. Full of energy the arrangements virtually burst at the seams. Recalling μ-Ziq in his heyday, the whole of the experience presents a world of wonder. Highly ornate and defying expectations, Cassilda and Carcosa dive deep into otherworldly territory. Rhythms are meant to be messed with, melodies warped and transformed into new ones, and the whole thing proves the soulfulness of early IDM.
The pieces radiate a joyfulness for they go hard with their experimentation. Acid techno, flirtations with dance, funk, even elements of pop, all of this framed by an IDM sort of approach. Sounds fold into each other while they loop around getting gradually modified and eventually completely disassembled. By refusing to take a straightforward approach, the work has a timeless yet vaguely nostalgic quality about it. Completely playful the work bounces off the walls in the greatest way possible.
“Before and After Being (Twin Suns Mix)” introduces the EP and sets the atmosphere for what follows. In spite of its short duration it still manages to offer a glimpse of Cassilda and Carcosa’s unique style. The warmth of “11-26 (Act 1, Scene 2)” taps into Plaid’s tender tones, with a swirling surreal quality coming into the fray. Beats here have a secondary quality for it is being led by gentle melodies that possess a wispy, almost yearning quality.
Highly intricate “4-27a (Act 1, Scene 1)” goes for a different take. With a ramshackle rhythm at first the piece takes its time in getting fully settled. Constant shifts define the work for they refuse to be still. Like a transmission from long ago “Atlantis2 Test (Jam 7)” serves as the highlight of the entire EP. Over the course of this track the woozy effects add to the general spirit of the piece. Evolution of the groove happens with such subtle changes. Yet in spite of these changes the entirety feels outright incredible, even loving. A toy box melody rests in the center of the finale, the wonderful trip of “Squarp4 (Jam 7)”.
Cassilda and Carcosa embrace a beautiful, boisterous sound on the colorful collages of “On The Shores of Hali”.