Per Aspera Ad Astra
"I've yet to be disappointed by a release on Touched Music, every time something is forwarded to me for audition I look forward to opening the proverbial box and peering inside with my ears.
'Per Aspera Ad Astra' is no exception, what we have here is an exemplary collection of music from a generous, mystery donor, going only by the moniker 'Aot-x'. I'm not sure what they do in the daytime, but at night I have a strong suspicion they spend their time weaving and crafting until the early hours - and I'm grateful that some of their efforts have ended up here.
Albeit brief the tracks here scream influence, as if the artist has broken into my house, peered into my music collection and worked out exactly what I want to hear. Little details turn already-fruitful songs into incredibly polished experiences, small delays, processed vocal streams and accented beats all reminding me of some of my favourite musicians.
Opening with 'Soulspice' I have to check I've queued up the right files and that I'm not listening to soemthing produced by Handley/Turner, it's crisp & clear, reminiscent of late 90s Plaid.
Skit-lengthed 'Electroveins' gives way to a steady-paced piece verging on the tribal in 'The Wildlife'. Once again I find it hard to believe this isn't a well-known artist or artists screwing with my perception.
'Genetic Mystery' is fulled of bounce and warpage; 'O-soznanie' is both weird & wonderful, presented with confidence and the list goes on - each track on this release has a thought-out quality that showcases the artist's talents well.
For me the highlights here are the aptly-named and aquatic 'Embrace of Water' - a twisted Hawaiian Luau quality melting into Braindance rhythms and a thoughtful ending, and 'Cybermind' - bold yet ethereal, fans of Bola prepare to be satisfied."
- Digital: £6.99
- CD: £7.99