Astralseid develop deep and descending spiritual energies with the beat-driven and flowing journeys on Shamanic Love.
Nordic electronic musical duo Astralseid really know how to dive into their own consciousnesses and look ‘out of world’ to find inspiration. New album Shamanic Love may only be four tracks long, but they are lengthy pieces of intriguing, primal energies that build and drop through hypnotic chants and heavy beats.
Starting off with Shadow Love (the shortest track on the record at 8 and a half minutes), we enter into a trance-infused world as hypnotic chants and reverberating, atmospheric flows bend and sprawl, developing a base before a heavy, bassy beat begins to hold everything together. The energy grows and develops as the track moves forward and a more straightforward drumbeat enters the fray as the track comes alive. It’s cosmic and ethereal sounds ebb and flow with the track content to pull back when necessary to let another layer take over and build again to another crescendo of sound. It’s a mesmeric opener that lets you know what to expect from the rest of the record.
Skydance borrows more from a 90s dance atmosphere as beats almost immediately enter against a repeating, synthy riff that grows in layers and stature as the track continues. Almost midway through we get an intriguing slow down and build up that could be a little more polished, but does help create something different and segue into a more stripped back section where drums and vocals take the front seat. Liberty then dives into the ether once more as ominous dread-laden tones start off the track, sounding like the opening scenes of a deep space, atmospheric alien movie. The drone grows towards that 90s dance sound once again as thumps and fast-paced synths build and sway. This is probably the most nuanced piece on the record, feeling both cinematic and hazy at the same time, drawing on different genres and ideas to fulfill its journey.
Awakening ends the record, carrying on in the same vein as the previous track with dark undertones and a slow and steady build-up. At times it feels like the track could work a little better if it was shorter and tighter – the 10 minute running time can feel just a little laboured in areas. You can see what they are trying to do in building a story arc without words, and for the most part, it does work and keeps you intrigued.
If you’re not in tune with this type of mystifying, primal music, then Shamanic Love from Astralseid will be a different listen, but if you can just sit back, relax, and let it take you over, it will take you on a journey. It’s music for when you’re in a certain type of mood and a certain type of headspace that slowly develops ideas and connections in an intriguing, cosmic way. It allows the listener to fall back into their own mind.