Went a bit nuts and bought a bunch of older and newer Ishq releases:
Older/compilations: Ishq - Fluid Earth + Sunflower + Bloom
Each of these discs contains b-sides and unreleased/compilation tracks recorded over the years. Fluid Earth
contains the second disc that accompanied Orchard
in the Dakini release. The lead track is a smooth one with some light percussive components: hypnotic and serene. Out of this bunch, I would say that Bloom
is the stand-out: It best represents the ambient side of Ishq that I appreciate: basic synth work with a nice mixture of organic and other-worldly elements. One of the tracks, Amaryllis Dreams, may be one of my favorite tracks in the Ishq cannon. Bloom
, even if it is merely a collection of varied songs, holds together incredibly well as an album and, in my opinion, deserves more recognition.
Newer:Onirojenik - Mundus Imaginalis + Onirojenik World
Two new Ishq releases in the Virtual World series. I'll be honest: These are not easy listens. On the one hand, these two discs represent a truly innovative direction for Hillier. They pick up where the lush, tribal themes that characterized Flowering Mountain Earth
leave off, but then push those themes into what might be best described as an acid-inspired trip through tribal cultures on another planet. It is super interesting stuff and involves sound palettes that I've never heard before. On the other hand, I'm not sure these discs have a lot of replay value. They deserve careful study, but they wear out their welcome after a few listens. I might feel differently about this after a bit of time, but I find myself listening more to the releases I described above than these newer ones.
Of the two new discs, I'd say that Mundus Imaginalis
is the best. It stays relatively true to some basic ambient roots. Onirojenik World
requires a bit more patience. https://virtual1.bandcamp.com/album/mundus-imaginalishttps://virtual1.bandcamp.com/album/onirojenik-world