Hia* | Biosphere ‎– Polar Sequences

Genre:
Style:
Year:
Notes:
Original issue, limited edition of 5000, released on Beyond in 1996.
Re-issued on Headphone in 2003 both on CD and digital.

In October 1995, as part of the annual Polar Music Festival, Geir Jenssen of Biosphere and Bobby Bird of The Higher Intelligence Agency, were commissioned by Nor Concerts to collaborate together on a musical project to take place in Geir's home town of Tromsø, Norway. The brief was for them to perform three concerts, using sounds sourced from the area as the basis of the music - the machinery of the local mountain cable lift, the snow, the ice etc…

The performances from which this recording is taken, took place on top of a mountain above Tromsø, in a cabin reached by the cable car, in which the audience were transported up the mountain in turn.

Tracklist

Cimmerian Shaft 13:16
Snapshot Survey 8:22
White Lightning 10:12
Countdown To Darkness 6:21
Corona 9:56
Meltwater 9:19

Versions (9)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
RBADCD17, rbadcd17 Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(CD, Album, S/Edition) Beyond, Beyond RBADCD17, rbadcd17 UK 1996 Sell This Version
H004 Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(6xFile, FLAC, Album, RE) Headphone H004 UK 2003
H004 Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(6xFile, MP3, Album, RE, 320) Headphone H004 UK 2003
H004 Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(CD, Album, RE) Headphone H004 UK 2003 Sell This Version
H004 Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(6xFile, WAV, Album, RE) Headphone H004 UK 2016
BIO32D Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(7xFile, FLAC, Album, RE, RM) Biophon Records BIO32D Norway 2018
BIO32D Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(7xFile, WAV, Album, RE, RM) Biophon Records BIO32D Norway 2018
BIO32LP Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(2xLP, Album, Ltd, RE, RM) Biophon Records BIO32LP Norway 2019 Sell This Version
BIO32CD Hia* | Biosphere Hia* | Biosphere - Polar Sequences(CD, Album, Ltd, RE, RM) Biophon Records BIO32CD Norway 2019 Sell This Version

Recommendations

Reviews Show All 19 Reviews

Add Review

Francesco_Burgaletta

Francesco_Burgaletta

October 26, 2019
edited 10 months ago
referencing Polar Sequences, CD, Album, Ltd, RE, RM, BIO32CD

Listening to the first minutes of Cimmerian Shaft i thought this was gonna be a masterpiece of a Dark Ambient album, but i was partially wrong. Yes, the tracks are in general a good pleasure, but overall, excluding some of them, they are quite anonymous. As for the first track, it reaches this anonimity later on, whereas many of the others are somewhat forgettable (perhaps the classical style of Higher Intelligence Agency took over and in this case left little to no space for atmosphere). Only 3 tracks are extremely valuable, the ones that sound as i wished they would, i'm talking about White Lightning, Meltwater and the closing Fjellheisen, these are worth the entire album. The first starts with a magnificent, horror-like soundscape and keeps on going slowly mutating into more conventional Ambient sounds, resulting in a balanced review between what i just said about anonimity and beauty. While White Lightning doesn't go much higher than that, Meltwater and Fjellheisen give a sensational feeling conveyed by the gorgeous Field Recording that makes up their structure, with almost no human hand interference, leaving Nature speaking by itself. The sound of crackling ice above turbulent water of Meltwater is magnificent, it feels so near that the sensation of being about to be swallowed by the icy waters is strong. Finally the Spoken Word merged with the dark atmospheres of Fjellheisen is the perfect close up, the most memorable track among all. The closing track is almost completely composed by that Spoken Word i talked about, and the effect is cold and warm at the same time, while some times the sound of a mechanical engine (maybe an elevator) transforming and merging with a monotonous Dark Ambient composition is an artistic touch i experienced only a few times. The result is an utterly raw sound that sticks to your skin and doesn't leave you even when the album listening is long finished. So, in the end, i have to say that this is half a masterpiece for the above reasons, obviously the fact that 2 great artists joined forces and came to a compromise limits the pure expressio as i am not listening to a pure Dark Ambient album but to an hybrid that, obviously, sounds weird in some passages.
Yennce

Yennce

February 19, 2019
edited about 1 year ago
referencing Polar Sequences, 2xLP, Album, Ltd, RE, RM, BIO32LP

This is my first Ambient album and I guess, there is no better way to get introduced to this kind of music and its spirit. A little too much talking on the last track, though.
Portis

Portis

February 16, 2019
referencing Polar Sequences, CD, Album, S/Edition, RBADCD17, rbadcd17

Sometimes you take the best parts of two artists and they create something even more impressive! Polar Sequences still sounds great today. It's as much as you could hope when two artists come together and bring their separate styles to combine this effectively.
bell-end

bell-end

January 27, 2019
referencing Polar Sequences, 2xLP, Album, Ltd, RE, RM, BIO32LP
Has anybody else found the pressing to be mildly off centre on side b,and to a lesser extent side c?
angelbear

angelbear

January 13, 2019
referencing Polar Sequences, 2xLP, Album, Ltd, RE, RM, BIO32LP
Absolute stunning piece of music.
Quality pressing with good dynamics, zero noises an beautiful artwork.
The bonus track on side D is welcome, but not essential.
Well done, Geir!!
Articuno

Articuno

November 1, 2018
edited about 1 year ago
referencing Polar Sequences, 7xFile, FLAC, Album, RE, RM, BIO32D

The 2018 remastered version of this great album is garbage. The remastering is poor, reducing the dynamic range to increase the loudness of the music (DR meter average 14 for the original release, 8 for the remaster). The bonus track is also quite bad, not worth listening to.
dmal2000

dmal2000

October 26, 2018
referencing Polar Sequences, CD, Album, S/Edition, RBADCD17, rbadcd17
Polar Sequences are available for pre-order on vinyl. Limited edition of 1000.
https://biosphere.bandcamp.com/album/polar-sequences-remastered
Candy_Guru

Candy_Guru

May 19, 2018
referencing Polar Sequences, CD, Album, S/Edition, RBADCD17, rbadcd17

The only thing that prevents icicles forming from Biosphere's polar soundscapes on your earlobes are the perfectly crafted syncopated beats by Higher Intelligence Agency. The perfect fusion.
AJAvinyl

AJAvinyl

June 21, 2016
referencing Polar Sequences, CD, Album, S/Edition, RBADCD17, rbadcd17

Absolutely stunning live recording with a beautiful story behind it. Take a bath, turn your stereo up and float transport.