The American record company Fruits De Mer is releasing a lot of music from Europe lately, all from bands that have a distinct sound drenched in psychedelics and krautrock. All these albums are released on vinyl only and not on CD or as a digital download copy.
Astralasia has its origin in the Magic Mushroom Band. Drummer Marc Hunt (also known as Swordfish) joined that band in 1989. Around that time the rave scene started to flourish and like many bands of their generation the Magic Mushroom Band started to experiment with electronics and dance rhythms. The first result was a track called Astralasia on the album Spaced Out (1991). They then decided to record their electronic dance music under the name of Astralasia and keep the Magic Mushroom Band purely as a rock band, although both consisted of the same people. By 1995 the Magic Mushroom band dissolved and Astralasia became the solo project of Swordfish. In recent years Swordfish is accompanied by Paul Chousmer, who had played in Webcore and Zuvuya, amongst others, before. In recent years Astralasia released two albums on the Dutch Tonefloat label, where they move towards ambient and minimal electronic music. Wind On Water is a return to their sound of around the time of Away With The Fairies (2006). In fact two of the tracks are indeed from 2006, however the rest is new. The title track Wind On Water has a certain Neu! and Harmonia rhythm. The Desert has a vocals on it and sounds a bit like a chill out version of Faithless.
Wind On Water marks the beginning of a new active period. The group is playing some festivals, some early albums are being reissued and a new album is scheduled for later in the year. It's a nice and mellow chill out album, spiced with a little krautrock and exotic elements.
**** Erik Gibbels (edited by Esther Ladiges)
Where to buy?