New East Digital Archive

Georgia’s receding glaciers inspire breathtaking ambient album

12 August 2021

Who: Musicians from Armenia, Georgia, and Berlin have joined forces to produce Glacier Music II, an experimental album reflecting on the planet’s deepening environmental problems. The ensemble includes Tbilisi musicians Anushka Ckheidze and Eto Gelashvili; Hayk Karoyi, an Armenian composer famous for his melding of Armenian folk traditions with contemporary sounds, video artist Lillevan, and Berlin-based composer and visual creator, Robert Lippok. The artists met years ago during a trip to the receding glaciers of Georgia’s North Caucasus and, overwhelmed by the fragility of the environment they witnessed, decided to collectively channel their feelings through music.

What to expect: Glacier Sounds II is an ambient, experimental album that weaves together several genres, languages, and moods. Emerging from a crackle of white noise in the opening track, “M3 S”, the release goes on to feature 10 songs including Hayk Karoyi’s “Infinite”, an immersive piano track that includes elements of folk Armenian music; “Microseismic”, a song that blends deep bass with geophonic recordings of shifting ice; and “Numbers Drop”, an gripping electronic track made collaboratively by the artists that communicates a joint feeling of climate anxiety.

What they say:Glacier Sounds II grew out of a journey — a shared trip into the icy Greater Caucasus mountains of Georgia, as artists from Armenia, Georgia, and Germany collected visceral sensations of nature to channel into potent musical collaborations,” producer Establishment Records told The Calvert Journal. “Those mountains form a thread across neighbouring but diverse musical traditions, and so from this fragile environment, an international collaboration between multi-talented producers and performers sound a poignant, personal note of urgency.”

Why you need to listen: Glacier Sounds II takes on the monumental task of capturing environmental fragility through 10 tracks. Through this multi-genre journey, the album manages to convey the glacial immensity of the melting ice masses, leaving listeners both breathless and energised to take action.

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