Eztica (feat. Ashkelon Sain) - Review
Soriah and Ashkelon Sain combine forces again for their second album together released on Projekt Records
These two build on their unique talents and musical styles for another interesting and haunting collaboration. Mixing traditional and ancient aztec and central asian styles and influences with modern guitars and various forms of percussion and rhythms modern and traditional. Spanning eleven tracks and packaged in a beautiful fold out eco-friendly wallet, this album is another excellent mixture of unique music.
The album starts off fairly dark and heavy with ancient verse and vocals hovering over grinding bass and various guitars and a mix of tribal rhythms in the form of "Iix". We get a nice mixture of ancient and modern styles and elements on this disc and this is a perfect example of how this collaboration has expanded slightly to include a little more modern instruments and styles in the mix while still maintaining that ancient air of mysticism. The range of intensity varies from the previously mentioned upbeat piece to dark, haunting ambient sounds. In fact dropping right off from "Iix" into the next piece "Ticochitlehua" is like dropping off of a high mountain peak into a dark and dreary abyss. The haunting music swirls around the listener as the soft, whispered tendril-like vocals move in to the subconscious. After climbing out of this abyss we're presented with a favorite on this album, the title-track "Eztica" starts off slow and dark and slowly builds into a moving, hypnotic piece with the mesmerizing throat-singing in it's unique splendor accented and moved along with a modern beat and modern, haunting music.
Overall the album picks up more of a modern air with the new and unique mixes across each track of guitar, percussion and synths making the music a bit more accessible to a wider audience in the related genres. It moves along fluidly through each piece from ancient to modern and back again, mixing the seemingly opposing styles into something at times dreamy, others moving and upbeat. Traditional tracks like "Ehecatl" and "Temicteopan" lay nestled between modern pieces, some still laid back and ethereal like "Chocatiuh" while others are an excellent mix of modern guitars and soundscapes such as "Ximehua". This new genre of ancient aztec and modern ambient and shoegaze meets psychadelic is intriguing and seems to work fine with an eclectic air. After a couple more of these pieces the album wraps up neatly with "Amochantzinco", again mixing the ancient vocals and chanting with modern guitars and ambient electronics across a moving mix of tribal and modern percussion for an excellent finale to the album.
Overall an excellent work with the music geared more towards what readers and listeners here would expect, while still maintaining the solid foundation in Soriah's ancestors ancient traditional sounds. Excellent progress while not losing any of the solid foundation.
Atlan (feat. Ashkelon Sain) - Review
Soriah is a unique musician in the ambient world of music, combining Asian influences with that of the ancient Aztec culture.
While he has created a number of limited self-released albums, this is the first full-length album through a label. He combines his efforts with those of Ashkelon Sain most recently known for his work with Trance to the Sun
, also released with Projekt Records
. I don't know much about the cultures and influences behind this music, but the style of throat singing that appears layered over the spellbinding ambient soundscapes is captivating across the eleven tracks on this album.
The album ebbs and flows through these otherworldly pieces and hold the listener entranced through instrumental and lyrical pieces alike. The vocals are unique and unlike anything you'll probably ever hear on any other album featured here on gothic paradise, but the music is an excellent blend of ambient and ethereal dimensions. Tribal beats provide a rhythm on some pieces while mostly the drifting, ethereal world envelopes and holds the listener entranced.
With this style of music, often the sounds and tracks just mesh and flow together without boundaries. Thus it is with many of the pieces here, however a few do stand out as favorites from the others, mainly because they break from the norm on the album and shine above the rest. "Cehui" really introduces us to the unique vocals style after the nice ambient intro piece "Yoallicuicatl". However, as the album drifts along, the convincing piece for me is "Xopancuicatl". This piece brings out something angelic and absolutely mesmerizing. It still features the unique vocal styles of the other pieces, but it's buoyed up by a solid mix of ambient synth soundscapes and subtle angelic vocals in the background, all moved along with subtle percussion. This is a stunningly beautiful piece unlike anything I've ever heard before.
Overall it's a nice and very unique album that ambient fans should really enjoy. With the inclusion of "Xopancuicatl", it becomes a solid collector's item and reaches across genre lines in a way that many people should really enjoy.
Label: Projekt Records