Saturday, 30 March 2013

From the Top Drawer XLVIII - Astralasia

Back in the saddle again after a bit of a hiatus, here we are with a new post.
Happily I have been lent a box of cassettes by an old friend (thank you Michael!) which contains a number of gems from back-in-the-day and I shall be ripping them to upload over the next months along with scanned artwork etc. (filehosting and copyright claims permitting!).
Astralasia are a dance and ambient act who started off as an offshoot of the Magic Mushroom Band, a well-loved group who played many psychedelic gigs and festival appearances from 1982 into the 1990s.
Soon after Marc Hunt (aka Swordfish) replaced drummer Jim Lacey in 1989, members of the band began to explore Ambient-Dub (and eventually Goa/Trance/House) territory with Astralasia. While the members still considered themselves mainly as being the Magic Mushroom Band, Astralasia was a huge success from the start, and they soon spent more time on the side project than on the original formation until Astralasia took over and as far as I know, the (affectionately known) Mushies have been 'on hold' since 1995.

'Originally founded as a dub-oriented side-project to the UK's legendary psychedelic rock-ensemble Magic Mushroom Band, Astralasia have quickly gone on to outlive and creatively outflank their former mothership. The group's music is a high-energy concoction of trance-infused electronic wizardry, intoxicating live-grooves and well-chilled moments of sheer sonic bliss. In 1993, the project garnered international attention thanks to their classic remix of Porcupine Tree's breakthrough track 'Voyage 34' and since then, the six-piece have never ceased to further develop and refine their sound.' (from their own website -

'Vol.2' is an early but ahead-of-its-time 1990 cassette release from this ambient/dance act who have gone from strength to strength and sophistication over their more than 20 years existence. It features an appearance by David Jackson of Van Der Graaf Generator on sax & flute.
('Tracklisting is very similar to that of the "Astralasia" album. "Astralasia (ambient mix)" appears as "Astralasia Pt.2" on that release.' Discogs)

Ripped as two side-long tracks @320kbps
Get a copy HERE