Calypso Borealis are from France, and they don't have much available information out there other than that. Their name is a compound of two contradictory ideas, balancing the tropical heat of calypso with the ionospheric chill of the northern and southern lights. This latest CDr for Kimberly Dawn features some seriously lush synthesizer work. Tones rich enough to eat, tones so thick you could wear them in the winter and keep yourself warm.
"Niakaramandougou" takes a sad and whispery chord progression and adorns it with LFO oscillations, changing it from a drifty bit of melancholy into an elegant block of sound that has both pace and movement throughout its nearly eight-minute running time. "Jiwe La Singa" features xylophone, voice, and tambourine along with a sweet synth drone to create a dubby vista that looks patiently and expectantly into the sky. Developing slowly and steadily, the track closes with a gently pulsing rhythmic patter that leaves its earlier stately melodicism behind. "Guezem" shows a noisier side to Calypso Borealis, opening with a cold blast of synth noise before settling down into a gritty and deliberately-paced drone. The basic elements stay the same throughout the piece while textures of varying frequency give an inexorable sense of motion.
Both composition and improvisation seem to play a role in this music, offering form along with an eye towards exploratory content. The resulting sound is one of quiet transcendence, framed by the opposite poles of cold and heat. Space is a cold place, but the glistening tones of Calypso Borealis present a warm humanity within the vast emptiness. 8/10 -- Mike Griffin (8 September, 2010)