Obsessed with music from a young age Kim Halliday latched on to punk, new wave, psychobilly and ska. After a year of playing, driving around in a van and living like a bohemian he starting looking towards the future. He ended up going to the London International Film School where he excelled as a composer. He has since gone on to score for feature films (Credo, Pink Pumpkins at Dawn), documentaries (Freedom for Birth, Doulah!, Real Birth Stories), television (Closer To Truth), commercial video and theatre.
Halliday wanted to create his music free of restrictions from film and it recently arrived in the form of a full-length album entitled HALFLIGHT. It’s extremely difficult to sum this album up in a few sentences because of the wide array of genres it covers within its seventeen instrumental songs. One thing I can say is that it does sound thematic, inventive and often epic. Halliday utilizes everything he can get his hands on from synths to guitars, piano, drum machines, you name it.
One other thing that should be mentioned before delving into the songs is the way he cross-pollinates genres within the songs themselves. This aspect is actually the most enjoyable aspect of HALFLIGHT. The songs are pretty far removed from pop songs with catchy hooks and memorable choruses but instead rely on morphing soundscapes that get the listener excited because of the unexpected pleasures ahead.
The opening track “Fabric, torn, time, slips” is a personal favorite as it sounds like something between Guns N’ Roses and Lali Puna. I never thought I’d write a sentence like that but the glitched out, cut up vocal samples combined with the whammy bar distorted guitar does indeed bear comparison to the two. The song gets more intense and more enjoyable as it progresses and Halliday starts to show his creativity in the studio.
Another highlight is the second track “Cold Moon,” which is an appropriate name for the song. Halliday coats his guitars in a more than healthy amount of reverb and layers it with an electronic, alien sounding drum kit. The synths tear at the seams adding to the celestial sounds. “Hellingly Hospital” is also a name that is right on the money. The mind bending, ominous sense of doom is consistent for the first half of the song until about halfway through where it sounds like a digital meditation. “Gillespie Road” explores subtle nuances in sound while ”High on the H&C” is the closest you will come to a rock song.
Overall, HALFLIGHT is a thematic and very diverse album. These songs felt best being listened to with a nice pair of headphones. There is a lot to explore here so take your time and get immersed.
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