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Karda Estra

Symphonic Prog

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Karda Estra Infernal Spheres album cover
3.74 | 48 ratings | 2 reviews | 12% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2017

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Prelude to a Dark Vortex (1:52)
2. The Fermi Paradox (3:19)
3. Ceres (1:36)
4. Obelisk of Cruithne (6:46)
5. Anatomy of the Heavens (4:48)
6. Solar Riviera (6:42)
7. Legacy of Theia (4:21)
8. Kklak! (3:45)
9. Free Fall on Tyche (4:51)
10. Nemesis (5:35)

Total Time 43:35

Line-up / Musicians

- Richard Wileman / acoustic, classical, electric, bass & prepared guitars, keyboards, samples, percussion, rastrophone, bouzouki, Appalachian dulcimer, zither, composer, arranger & producer

- Ileesha Wileman / vocals (7,9,10)
- Jo Court / bass clarinet (6,9,10)
- Caron De Burgh / oboe (3,8), cor anglais (1,8)
- Amy Fry / clarinet (5,9), tenor saxophone (9)
- Richard Overton / bass (1,3) & tenor (6,9) trombones
- Lauraine Phelan / trumpet (6,9)
- Helen Dearnley / violin (4)
- Paul Sears / drums (2,6)

Releases information

CD Believers Roast - BR020 (2017, UK)

Digital album

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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KARDA ESTRA Infernal Spheres ratings distribution

(48 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(12%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(25%)
Good, but non-essential (35%)
Collectors/fans only (19%)
Poor. Only for completionists (8%)

KARDA ESTRA Infernal Spheres reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kev rowland
5 stars Richard is back with his fourteenth album, and I made the mistake of playing this in the car the very first time I listened to it, and only realised afterwards that I had driven more than sixty kilometres with no real recollection of having done so! When Richard is in his comfort zone of mixing and melding classical musical soundscapes with progressive overtones, then there really is no-one else who can match him. I defy anyone to listen to "Obelisk of Cruithine" and not been drawn into a labyrinthine world of melodies, dissonance, simplicity and complexity that defies description, yet makes complete musical sense always. How Richard manages to understand exactly what notes he needs where, and which instruments are to be used to play them, is just beyond me. Apart from Helen Dearnley providing violin, this song, amazingly, is one where he provides virtually all the instruments himself (he lists himself as providing acoustic, classical, electric, bass and prepared guitars, keyboards, samples, percussion, rastrophone, bouzouki, Appalachian dulcimer and zither on this album).

Yet he brings in guests on bass clarinet, oboe, cor anglais, violin, clarinet, tenor sax, bass trombone, tenor trombone and trumpet where he feels the need. There are also drums, but only one two songs, while Ileesha provides her amazing wordless vocals to just three numbers this time. I have known Richard for more than twenty years now, and I have yet to hear anyone else achieve what he manages with Karda Estra. He still surprises me in so many ways, as he moves so many different styles, yet all with a common theme of being visual: I always "See" his music as well as hearing it. It may be his fourteenth album but he shows no signs at all, of slowing down, and I actually think this is his finest yet.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Richard Wileman has returned to some of the simpler soundscapes and melodic structures of his early work. Richard's wife and long-time collaborator, Ileesha (née Bailey) is present but used rather sparingly. The album seems to have songs representing all of Richard's moods and eras in his illustrious evolution.

1. "Prelude To A Dark Vortex" (1:52) gorgeous opener in church-like bombastics with lots of minor chords and atmospherics. So regal! (9.5/10)

2. "The Fermi Paradox" (3:19) awesome song with Paul Sears' perfectly fitting drumming. Great chord progressions and cool off-beat bass play. My favorite song on the album. (10/10)

3. "Ceres" (1:36) minor Spanish-style guitar-based song with the gorgeous oboe play of long-time collaborator Caron De Burgh. Another gem. (9.5/10)

4. "Obelisk Of Cruithne" (6:46) is a return to darker times. Mostly a solo affair, Richard uses some very odd sounds and sound combinations to keep the listener on edge. Dissonance and melodrama with little or no melody. (8/10)

5. "Anatomy Of The Heavens" (4:48) gorgeously nostalgic. Piano and clarinet shine. Haunting melodies. Problem is that it doesn't go anywhere; it's an awfully long song for such sustained simplicity. (9/10)

6. "Solar Riviera" (6:42) nice soundtrack music. Very French. The eerie "saw" synth in the background is a cool touch. The two brief interlude/breaks are also a nice touch before the transition to different sounds and drumming. I like the 'thickening' of the musical soundscape in the fourth and fifth minutes and the horns in the final third. (9/10)

7. "Legacy Of Theia" (4:21) It's so nice to hear Ileesha's voice! A gorgeous acoustic guitar-based song with, again, all kinds of unusual sounds and textures combining to convey the 'story'. The tinny percussion-like keyboard sounds are my favorites--and there are a lot of them here. Interesting fade/outro. (9/10)

8. "Kklak!" (3:45) pure dissonance and questionable substance. (7/10)

9. "Free Fall On Tyche" (4:51) back to some of the Burt Bacharach-like sounds that we heard on 2013's Mondo Profondo. Ileesha's vocalizations are, of course, the highlight of the song--with the horns. So nice to hear the full horn and woodwinds interacting. The bass guitar is a little monotonous but overall, this is a nice song. (9/10)

10. "Nemesis" (5:35) bass clarinet and percussion alternating with a chorus of Ileesha and organ. Interesting and often surprising but also hypnotic. (9/10)

Definitely my favorite album of KE's from this decade, despite the stylistic eclecticism and the lack of (enough) of Ileesha's wonderful vocals. A four-plus star album that I highly recommend. Check it out!

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