- Iix (9:47) | MP3 Clip
- Ticochitlehua (3:51) | MP3 Clip
- Eztica (4:43) | MP3 Clip | Video
- Nica Anahuatl (2:36) | MP3 Clip
- Ehecatl (3:51) | MP3 Clip | Video
- Chocatiuh (1:47) | MP3 Clip
- Ximehua (8:41) | MP3 Clip
- Temicteopan (6:55) | MP3 Clip
- Xiuhcoatl (8:38) | MP3 Clip
- Omeyocan (8:53) | MP3 Clip
- Amochantzinco (8:25) | MP3 Clip
An enrapturing, neo-ancient, mystically ethereal musical experience. Hypnotic tribal rhythms meld organic darkwave textures with Central Asian instruments and overtone singing.
Eztica, brethren follow up to 2009’s Atlan, draws a heavy, hungry first breath like that of the first man Quetzalcoatl created from maize. Soriah’s virtuoso Tuvan throat-singing, Central Asian stringed instruments and hand percussion is perfectly melded with the neo-ancient airs of Ashkelon Sain’s exquisite darkwave guitars, celestial electronics, and hypnotizing poly-rhythms. Eztica has its roots in the ceremonial: ritualism, shamanism, butoh. It is a deeply organic experience, the voice drawing out the primordial spell, touching the earth, reaching for the sky. Captivating percussive sections with driven vocals glide effortlessly across windswept steppes, while otherworldly overtones hang like clouds in a frosted mountain range, all amid deep expanses of slowly shifting, mesmerizing tones. And when the Quetzalcoatl Kundalini of Soriah’s lyrical throat singing fires down the spine, everything goes astral.
The 11 new works featured on Eztica form a neo-tribal, mystically ethereal, paranormally enrapturing musical experience. Blending the textural with the structural, the songs bridge ethnographic and darkwave stylings, traversing an innerspace replete with sonic splendor, emotional resonance, and instrumental alchemy. Connecting the dots between the human and the shaman amidst the powers and forces of nature, Eztica is a fascinating 68-minute oeuvre for the mind and soul. Beautifully odd, elevatingly dark and utterly lovely.
Both artists have long pedigrees: 40 years of live and recorded musical experience between them. Soriah has existed under that name for over a decade with three previous albums and many tours including performances in clubs and all places mystical, including trees, churches, caves. He has also been recognized through international competition as one of the top 5 throat singers in the world. Ashkelon Sain’s Trance To The Sun project is legendary; his composition skills have been honed razor-sharp on his more recent project, Submarine Fleet. The collaboration is a match made in Omeyocan (the highest Aztec Heaven).
David J – of Bauhaus / Love And Rockets – writes: I once had the good fortune to be with Soriah in a sacred place in nature. A true power spot atop a mossy peak in the heart of the Columbia River Gorge. There we sat under a magnificent, pummeling waterfall as he bowed his horse-headed two string Igil, tuning into the vibration, the essence, the cosmic ebb and flow. Shaman that he is, the Tuvan throat singing phenomenon that is Soriah will take you to that holy place whenever you lend an ear to his music. It is instant transcendental transportation and guaranteed to get you there on time.
On his new album, Eztica, a collaborative work with the extraordinary Ashkelon Sain, that magickal realm is accessed simply by the push of a button marked ‘play’. Eagles will suddenly soar around the room and wild horses stampede through your inner cortex! Fires will burst into roaring flame and swarms of cicadas, sing. Blood memory! Ancient ancestors dancing in the alcoves of a powerful cellular imprint. All is brought back and made present, humming with vital life as you find yourself caught up in a mesmerizing swell of Aztec incantation and layers of symphonic swells, this ethereal etheric suddenly invaded by explosive percussion and lavish layers of electric guitars. Surrender to the journey, lie back and travel deep.
Soriah: Vocals, Igil, Doshpuluur, Zither, Doumbek and other hand percussion, Aztec Clay Flute and Native American Cedar Flutes, Bells, Stones and Sticks.
Ashkelon Sain: Keyboards, Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Electric Bass, Bells, Electronic Drums.
Nachyn Choduu: Tuvan Guitar on “Amochantzinco.”
Reviews Editor –
At its core, Eztica is a disc about power. Primarily, the power of the voice. Throughout the disc, Soriah alternately shouts invocations to the heavens (“Iix”), shakes the pillars of the earth with the soul-resonating guttural beauty of Tuvan throat singing (“Eztica”), tells cautionary tales by the fire on a moonless night (“Ticochitlehua”) and intimately whispers long-hidden secrets to us (“Temicteopan”). Each carries its own potency, its own sense of ritualistic intent conveyed through the mystic, primitive cadence of the Aztec language of Nuahtl. You don’t need to know the language to feel the effect, which runs deep and pings something primal inside. Eztica is also about the power of music and its effect on the spirit. From the stirring pulse of drums and hand percussion to the electric urgency of Ashkelon Sain’s guitar as it tears through tracks like “Iix,” stirring up a heady brew of equal parts then and now, the music on Eztica is an elemental force of its own. Flutes, zither, and Tuvan guitar all add their own signatures to the sound. The energy here is perfectly modulated between high and low as the disc moves along–the aggressive “Iix” drops down into the hush of “Ticochitlehua,” then rises in the ecstatic dance of the title track, which is absolutely the highlight of the disc. It begins with soft synth chords, Soriah’s voice in an ululating prayer-call rising behind it. Drums move in, and then the throat singing enters. Once this hits, the track will simply own you. This is a perfect future-primitive kind of track, the beats sliding toward an almost club-like tempo, the rich bass of the singing melting across the low end and texturing the flow. “Ximehua” has that same kind of blend, with the added attraction of Soriah hitting the high-register throat sounds, that signature whistle-like tone arcing upwards. And thus it goes, taking the listener from exhilarating dances to spaces of simple beauty like “Chocatiuh.” Here Sain’s guitar pairs with some sort of bowed instrument as natural sounds–flowing water and the chitter of birds–frame the scene. “Omeyocan” features Soriah on flute, placed over quiet washes and a soft, echo-filled guitar line. Eztica is one of the discs that just takes you in by making you think it’s one thing–a potent, tribal-driven work–and then showing you all the sides of a wonderfully talented and thought-provoking artist. The ride is engaging, exciting and empowering. At the same time it can be calming and cleansing. And it does these things in perfectly balanced measure.