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Now Hear This: Vestiges - Healing Spells

Rating: ***1/2

Kinda wild that it's already been over a year since I reviewed the first EP from Healing Spells "Sanctuary". Well, the Tokyo-based electronica wiz is back and (maybe better than ever) with a full-length LP titled "Vestiges" that is sure to offer more weird, pseudo-spiritual electronic beats to vibe to.

Now, as most of my readership knows, electronic music can be a bit of a mixed bag for me. When I like it, I really like it, and when I don't, I really don't. I dug the first offering from Healing Spells, so let's see if he can go two-for-two.

I'm gonna make some food and play this while I cook and eat. My thoughts to come after the jump. You know, like they always do.

Listen to "Diver's Ascent" on Youtube below:

"Altitude" starts us off and it's a mish-mash of crazy sounds and rhythms that somehow reminds me of a Pepsi commercial from the 80s. It's somehow even weirder than anything that was on his first EP, which is saying a lot. I dug it. "Through the City" is track two, and while it's more focused, it's a little less fun than the opening track. "Diver's Ascent" is dope af and a perfect single for an album that traditionally wouldn't have one. This thing is high energy and positive while having a creepy undertone all at the same time. Title track "Vestiges" is next and it's slower pace makes for a nice change-up in an album that has been decidedly uptempo thus far. "Les Chimes" is cool with off-time beats that challenge the listener to clap along. "Early Morning Rituals" sounds like a meditation app on valium. This one could put you to sleep. I mean that as a compliment. It's dope. "Voices From the Ocean" is a little dark and haunting. But the beats are dope. You're not gonna dance to it, but it's the perfect music for a post-seance dinner party. "Shivani's Song" is next and it's a little bit more upbeat than the prior, but continues a darker tone here towards the end of the album. "Red Island" moves the needle more in the "fun" direction and sets the stage well for the final track on the album. "Sentinel" is rad and probably my favorite track on the entire LP. Just electronica that sounds like it would be playing in a dive bar on Neptune. Interesting and nuanced, it's the perfect track for a night of drinking in 2050.

If you're a fan of weird Japanese electronic music, this is gonna be right up your alley. If you're not, you might find the weird, all-over-the-place vibe of "Vestiges" a little off-putting. I was somewhere in the middle, but leaning towards thinking it's pretty great and for that, I give it a solid recommend.

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