Kalandra, Beneath The Breaking Waves. E.P. Review.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 8.5/10

There can surely be no argument that Norwegian band Kalandra have been utterly missed in their former adopted home of Liverpool, the sound of the ethereal and the dominating unearthly beauty that resonated throughout their live performances in the city was always a huge pleasure to catch on a night when the world seemed out of kilter or when the heavens were just in the right position to make anything else in the world, for a short while, seem imaginary and not visible.

Their music may resonate of the Nordic, of the myths and stories of their upbringing and the nature of their country’s ability to produce aural storytellers but their grounding very much still sits within the heartbeat of the Mersey and whilst their E.P. has the majesty of Nordic intuition, it is Beneath the Breaking Waves of the Mersey that their blood seemingly returns.

Beneath the Breaking Waves is not only sensual, it is the ideal of a dream made real, the imagination coming across in the story, in the feel of tangible vocals and instruments that are not just being played, they are joined in the passion of the serenade that only the ethereal can often supply.

It has been a long journey for the band, one that has taken them essentially back to their roots but one in which the influence of Liverpool has not left them, there is an echo, a timbre of meaning within the songs which harks neatly to the port and its music, beyond this port of Liverpool always is the ocean and the waves that swell and engulf the unwary; not an issue for Kalandra who have taken the music one major step at a time.

In the songs Heal My Soul, Concrete Landscapes, Lullaby, the gorgeous introspection and memory of Across The Sea, Nobody and the superb What Do You Know About Love?,  Kalandra have made good on their unspoken promise, on their assurance and personal endeavours to produce a set of songs that are humble, enormous and fulfilling. This is not the end of the long road, this is just the very start and all that came before was but a sincere and stunning prelude; this is the breaking wave which you want to wash away all and leave you clean and ready for the next challenge, one that Kalandra are ready for.


Ian D. Hall