Wachuma's Wave
by Phil Derby, Electroambient Space
June 2004

I loved Byron Metcalf's earlier collaboration with Steve Roach called THE SERPENT'S LAIR, an excellent blending piece of ambient tribal world music. This time Byron teams up with Steve again, as well as Mark Seelig on flutes, overtone singing and chants. There is an almost religious feel about the music, likely intentional given Metcalf's influences. The title track seems to reverberate into infinity with Mark's vocals; Metcalf's frame drums and "hybrid tabla groove" further help to set the mood.

"Gone... Beyond" starts very faint, coolly floating by. Metcalf's beats enter now and again, slow and mellow. "Deep Time Dreaming" starts quietly, but revs up the drumming intensity in welcome fashion. Though faster, it is still relatively soft, never dominating the other musical elements. "Last Remnants of Reality" moves more slowly and deliberately, perfect for deeper trance-like primitive states of mind. The tribal motion continues in "Dance of the Heart Voyagers". More surreal and spiritual is "Across the Waters", featuring Metcalf with a sacred chant. Normally I object to vocals in my ambient and electronic music, and even though this isn't my favorite track the vocals do fit the mood quite well, whispered in a primitive tongue.

Fans of ambient tribal and overtone singing should find this well to their liking.

Wachuma's Wave

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CD out of stock
Wachuma's Wave
Byron Metcalf, Mark Seelig (with Steve Roach)
2003 Spotted Peccary Music SPM 1501 (CD)
Reviewed by Electroambient Space, Wind and Wire

This project was built around Byron's evolving style of acoustic and processed percussion pieces pulsing in the spirit of THE SERPENT'S LAIR with Steve Roach. The spiritually rich overtone voice and flute of Mark Seelig creates a unique stirring blend that is organinc at the core. Although Steve was consumed with the creation of MYSTIC CHORDS & SACRED SPACES, he joined in on the project later on, adding soundworlds and processing throughout. This release sets the stage for a second project in production now, a full collaboration between Byron, Mark and Steve that was mapped out during a recent week this summer at the Timeroom.

"WACHUMA'S WAVE is sacred music in the truest sense. It is a portal of travel, a soul retrieval, a ritual of deep time dreaming. Veteran trance percussionist Byron Metcalf teams up with German-based musician and shamanic practitioner Mark Seelig to bring forth a multi-textural blend of Bonsuri flutes, sacred chants and overtone singing, simmering percussion and other hybrid grooves, augmented by rich offerings of deep drift ambient synthesizer and didgeridoo from special guest, soundscape maestro Steve Roach. Fans of THE SERPENT'S LAIR will be thrilled by this innovative and heart-stirring alchemy." -- Frank MacEowen

Click the 'feature' icon (left) for MP3 clips.
1. Wachuma's Wave 14:47 
2. Gone... BeyondMP313:22 
3. Deep Time DreamingMP310:34 
4. Last Remnants of RealityMP313:53 
5. Dance of the Heart VoyagersMP310:41 
6. Across the WatersMP310:37 

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