Apr 2013 29

Shrine - SomniaShrine
Category: Ambient
Album: Somnia
Stars: 2.5
Blurb: Four years after the release of Wander, Shrine releases Somnia, his own interpretation of a low level lucid dream state.


In 2003, Shrine decided to start work on his solo ambient project; originally his idea was to create a dark ambient work, but this quickly turned into a journey of music exploration into different, as he puts it, drifting styles incorporating synths, sounds that he hears from nature, different acoustic instruments, and other sounds that interest him. With Somnia, Shrine attempts to take the listener into his version of a low level lucid dream state.

A lot of thought and work has been put in the music Shrine has produced. To truly appreciate Shrine’s music, listeners should turn off the lights, close their eyes, and immerse themselves into the music. The first track, “The Grand Design” starts off on a dream that one could be walking along the beach, hearing the sounds of the waves crashing on the beach and the seagulls in the air. The only problem with this track and the rest of the album is the constant repetitiveness of the music. If you are immersed, you want the story of the dream to continue, but as with “The Grand Design,” you start to walk along the beach, you go so far, and then it goes back to the start of the beach again, leaving the listener wanting to know more about the walk.

There is the element of water in this album with tracks like “The Grand Design,” “Somnia,” and “Iron Water.” Shrine also takes you into other places and cultures. With “Immersion,” the listener is taken on a dream that is very reminiscent to a Native American spirit journey. With “Lost Beauty” and “Dream Captured in Stone,” Shrine whisks the listener away to an ancient civilization – maybe Machu Picchu, the Lost City of the Incas. With “Ruins,” one can imagine standing in the courtyard of a castle with history passing you by. And with “On the Edge of the Void,” you are given the image if standing on the very edge of the world looking down to the void below.

Overall, the concept of the album is truly amazing. One can tell that a lot of work has been put into it, but the music just doesn’t have enough depth. All of the tracks are very monotonous and repetitive. Just as you are painted a picture of the dream, you are dragged back to where you started. With Somnia, the listener is left feeling that Shrine could tell more to the story and more is what you want.
Track list:

  1. The Grand Design
  2. Immersion
  3. Lost Beauty
  4. Somnia
  5. The Iron Water
  6. Dream Captured in Stone
  7. Ruins
  8. On the Edge of the Void

Shrine Website http://shrine.me.uk
Shrine MySpace http://www.myspace.com/shrineproject
Shrine Facebook https://www.facebook.com/shrine.project
Shrine SoundCloud https://soundcloud.com/shrine-project
Cyclic Law Website http://www.cycliclaw.com
Cyclic Law MySpace http://www.myspace.com/cycliclaw
Cyclic Law Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cyclic-Law/8466081439
Cyclic Law Twitter https://twitter.com/CyclicLaw
Purchase at:
Amazon MP3
Phill Bruce (Phlis)

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