Exposé Online banner

Ecovillage — Sacred World
(Constellation Tatsu PURR 009, 2018, MC / DL)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2019-01-22

Sacred World Cover art

I had never heard of this Swedish duo of Peter Wikström and Emil Holmström before they were brought to my attention by Gayle Ellett (of Djam Karet and Fernwood), who has been involved with Ecovillage from the outset; they have four previous albums since 2009 on four different labels, and Sacred World is their fifth, again on a different label, this time released only on cassette or as a download. Wikström and Holmström have been working on various music projects together since 2001, but following a three month journey of discovery through Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Indonesia in 2006, they created Ecovillage, an experimental ambient world music group, taking a more spiritual path. The two principals play flutes, cello, synthesizer, electric piano, grand piano, acoustic guitars, percussion, sitar, samples, and various field recordings, and composed the six tracks here together, recording their parts in Umeå, Sweden. Gayle Ellet plays harnonium, dilruba, guitar, surmandal, 8-string tenor ukulele, udu, tanpura, wooden flutes, windchimes, ebow, and more field recordings, his parts recorded at his studio in Topanga, California. The mood throughout is very meditative, though the first few tracks are the most so, the opening title track is primarily looped cloudbursts of sound with what sounds like a zither (surmandal) and some synths, flutes and percussives just under the surface as the piece rolls onward with field recordings of birds chirping closes the proceedings. “Catch the Spirit” moves through a heavily processed cornucopia of sounds with wood flutes and percussives dominant, with occasional sounds of sitar and nylon string ukulele bubbling up through the surface creating simple, yet very effectve melodic patterns in the overall swirl of sound. Thus far I am reminded very much of Jade Warrior’s meditative album At Peace, and the third cut, “Journey into Now,” continues in that vein, presenting soft melodic sprites over a bed of glissando guitars and synth. The 21+ minute epic “Garden of Bliss” is like a lengthy journey through a number of different phases, with flutes, dilruba, percussion, and field recordings playing a major part throughout. The closer “For Artur” sports a powerful melody delivered on trumpet by guest player Erik Palmberg, over drifts of synth, dilriba and other heavily processed sounds shimmering underneath it all, closing the album with a gentle yet powerful touch.


Filed under: New releases, 2018 releases

Related artist(s): Gayle Ellett, Ecovillage

More info
http://ctatsu.bandcamp.com/album/sacred-world

Latest news

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the ago of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Stinkhorn - Tunguska – Back in #20 I reviewed the debut by this Seattle jazz group. I’m happy to say that this second release, Tunguska, is every bit as good as the first, and maybe better. Stinkhorn’s personnel and...  (2002) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues