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Home Reviews Review: Astralseid – Shamanic Love (Album, 2020)

Review: Astralseid – Shamanic Love (Album, 2020)

by Thiago Marques
Published: Updated:

Shamanic Love is the title of the second album by the Norwegian Electro-Folk duo Astralseid, composed of Gustav Holberg and Rúnahild.

The project was formed in summer 2018 after Rúnahild felt the urge to compose electronic music. As soon as she met again with Gustav Holberg, someone who was already well-acquainted with the genre, they decided to create something different from their acoustic Nordic Folk projects.

After their debut album, Astralseid, they decided to go even deeper on the electronic side this time. On the other hand, they also pushed the vocal aspect of their music even further, mixing more primitive, shamanic singing with the modern sound of electronic instruments.

The duality of their music is perfectly represented by the opening track, Shadow Love. It starts with a hypnotic background element accompanied by Rúnahild’s haunting and archaic chants. Then, it gets more dynamic, traveling through a mysterious, but vivid, atmosphere that is suddenly replaced by the placidity of the throat-singing. This is definitely a song of beautiful contrasts.

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See also: Rúnahild & Gustav Holberg’s project releases debut album

Skydance, the second track, is true to its title and opens with a very dancy mood. However, Rúnahild’s chants soon come into play, taking the listener from the dance floor to the duo’s earthen cabin in Western Norway, where they compose their music. There, they’ll tell you tales of the Far East, while playing the Chinese erhu.

The album follows with Liberty, the most “electronic” of all the tracks. The vocals are absent here, in favor of beats, the sound of the mouth harp and synthesized melodies. Here, the atmosphere feels denser, sometimes even tense, which is sort of ironic considering the song title.

Awakening, is the fourth and last song of the album. I consider this one the most “primal-sounding” of the four. Here we have both Rúnahild and Gustav fiercely chanting, while the electronic elements take on a softer role.

If there’s one thing that we can say to better describe Shamanic Love, is that it shows a perfect marriage between contrasts. It is a proof of the versatility of these two talented musicians, fusing the primal and the futuristic directly from their off-grid cabin, with their electronic instruments.


See also: Rúnahild releases single: ‘Disabrunn’

Credits

  • Recorded and mixed by Gustav Holberg and Rúnahild.
  • Mastered by Gustav Holberg.
  • Label: Independent


Links

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YouTube | Bandcamp | Spotify

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