Astral TV — Travelling the Circuits
(El Paraiso EPR055, 2019, LP / DL)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2019-10-03
There is a bit more than straight-up improvisation in this second offering from Astral TV, the synthesizer duo of Rasmus Rasmussen (from Causa Sui) and Keith Canisius. With Rasmussen’s presence, one might expect something like… but no, this is nothing like Causa Sui, in fact what we have here is a dreamy collection of sonic vignettes that could have been pieces of a lost 70s Popol Vuh album with touches of Neu!, Cluster and the like. The duo uses an arsenal of synthesizers, both vintage and modern, with analog, digital, and modular racks, plus one can sometimes hear guitar-sourced sounds, although heavily effected, all spilling out onto their big beautiful sonic canvas. There are fourteen cuts herein, all guided by the duo’s collective improvisational spirit, some shorter than one minute, others stretching out to six or even eight minutes. Together, they tend to function as a collection of dream sequences, the listener can find themselves moving through numerous portals as the scenes change, as new sounds, colors, and forms slowly and gently explode in episodic patterns. Deep bass pulsations wander through the undercurrents while faster melodic sequences blossom and fade. Some of the shortest vignettes among these are at times the most interesting, and leave the listener wanting more. Nothing here is sharp or disturbing in any way, just a constant flow of layered melodic ideas coming into focus and passing by as the listener floats downstream. Plenty of wonderful and mysterious sounds to explore here.
Related artist(s): Astral TV
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