Akasha is a seasoned musician, a masterful crafter of emotional moments and purveyor of rhythmic and harmonic madness. His music has been the soundtrack to many of the more surreal and wonderful nights of my life. It will not surprise you then, that I jumped at the chance to get a peek inside his newest EP from Party Time Society Records, Pathfinder — a leap of faith that led me spiraling into a wondrous and twisted journey which I am excited to recount, and recommend you undertake yourself as soon as possible.
Pathfinder is decidedly digital music, but also brutally organic. It strikes at the fascinating and essential interdependency of the human and his tools and nowhere is that more clear than in Akashas opening track, “Soul searching”. This feels (with all the viscerally physical meaning of the word) like a trans-humanist spiritual anthem, where the digital becomes the biological in some techno-organic sludge. The whole EP, with this track as it’s central mantra, seems to be a modern machine exploration of some ancient communion — trancendence through technology. Meticulously produced with potent dragging rhythms, this journey is not always easy, and “Soul searching” earns its name with constantly evolving and piercing glances at both the ethereal and grotesque.
If, “Soul searching” is a body prayer, then “Simple150” is the high minded sound meditation on what it means to hear at all. This is the intellectualism of twilight headphone music. While slightly less harmonically relevant, this track delves deep into samples, space, and synth, treating us to the sci-fi dub of an incredibly textured soundscape. Strange and abrasive mixed with super deep drilling psychedelia, a growling groove hold us firmly while we dip in and out of extra planetary deep space transmissions.
This EP is full of the natural and the supernatural, ancient percussions and glitched-out alien stringed instruments, blurring all of the lines in-between tribal history and a future robotic memories. The title track“Pathfinder” juxtaposes the beautiful and the filthy, the funk and the contemplative, while “Dulcindered” brings us up to the canopy of a great forest on the back of its ghostly breaks and a distant dog barking at the moon.
This is not music to be undertaken lightly — This EP demands active participation from the listener undertaking its crescendo. The capstone track, “Encapsulate” shows most clearly what is being asked of the us as journeyers. This is not an easy song to listen to — weird and wild, this is mind penetrating head candy at it’s most effective with a multitude of sounds that pierce straight through the psyche. I imagine this as the robot psychedelia that plays as an adventurous cyborg tries to remember what it was to be human.
Akashas new EP, Pathfinder is a hard hitting explosion of aural and intellectual delights, and each time I have listened through it I have been treated to some new moment of emotional experience. It concurrently consistently speaks to the body in ways where one cannot help but move. No two songs on this EP are saying the same thing, but they are all different voices speaking together to form a larger story. For me, it speaks one narrative, taking me through my own memories and futures.
What story do you hear in this elegantly tangled and breathing mass of music? Let’s talk about it in the comments below