August 6, 2021 — As Earth spins into August while the hay-making days of Norse summer month “Heyannir” draws to a close, Kurgan Compass’ neofolk adept James Paterson has harvested some interesting hearsay for the folk-minded in this week’s news roundup.
Emerging Russian folk project Moonloom looked back to spring with the single ‘Ostara’, while Shamano-Siberian trio NYTT LAND got ready for their new album release, and North America’s Sun and Moon Dance saluted nature with the song ‘Deer Dance’.
NYTT LAND DROP MUSIC VIDEO; PLAN FOR “LIVE RITUALS”
Ahead of their new album release Ritual, which releases today, Sibero-Shamanic dark folk act NYTT LAND offered another glimpse into the haunting tales at the heart of its new LP by way of single ‘Svartravn’ and its animated music video (watch below.)
The animated video, although surprisingly colorful for a dark folk project, portray grim and atmospheric scenes inspired by ancient Siberian and North European culture and folklore, backed by traditional instrumentation and experimental vocals. NYTT LAND (who recently signed with Napalm Records) also brought plenty of chilling visuals to cool off the summer air and celebrate the new album. Also, speaking of their recent single, the following group statement was offered;
“Svartravn for us is one of the most melodic and most dramatic songs in the new album… …undoubtedly, this energy is very accurately visualized in the video created for this song.”
NYTT LAND, which formed in 2013, has racked up millions of cross-platform streams of their unique take on traditional folk music. The band is also set to celebrate the release of their new album Ritual by performing it as part of a streaming Live Ritual experience, set to premiere on August 13 at 8:00 PM CET/2:00 PM EDT (back in March, Wardruna explored another approach to live-streaming which we reviewed here.)
NYTT LAND had this to say about their unique, upcoming live stream;
“A lot of work has been done to convey the sound of the Living Ritual as high as possible so that together with us you can feel this primal, wild energy of a real shamanic rite and its indescribable atmosphere. Prepare for the Ritual!”
MOONLOOM CELEBRATE OSTARA IN SUMMER
Young, Moscow based, fantasy-inspired folk outfit Moonloom have recently released their new single, ‘Ostara’. Available to stream on several platforms including Spotify and Apple Music, the brand-new song is inspired by the spring festival of Ostara (Ostara, or Eostre or Eastre, is the Germanic Goddess of spring and dawn) which the band describes as a “holiday of balance.”
Moonloom further explained, via their official Facebook page;
“In the Wiccan tradition, the Goddess on this holiday becomes younger, restores her virginity, and until Beltane appears in the image of the Virgin along with God, who grows up and becomes a youth by this time.”
‘Ostara’ sounds like a celebratory melodic track that escalates to rambunctious heights in an impressive mix of traditional flute, throat singing, and hurdy-gurdy. The single’s release also coincided with the launch of the band’s 8-Bit Magic two-track EP which reimagines two of the band’s most popular tracks, Lorelei and Yule, in a low-fi midi medium rooted in video game culture.
Whether neofolk fantasy or ancient vibes through a retro-modern lens are your things, both of Moonloom’s new releases are available to stream now on the Kurgan Compass Spotify playlist.
SUN AND MOON DANCE RELEASE DEER DANCE
Based in the mountains of western North Carolina, rite-induced duo Sun and Moon Dance have delivered a subtle but immersive piece in ‘Deer Dance’. Sun and Moon Dance’s music blends Appalachian and Norwegian folk music in the ritual connection between the artist, nature, and the gods and goddesses that inspire their work — two of these obviously being the Sun and Moon as portrayed in Norse myth by the chasing wolves, Hati and Sköll.
In addition to the common musical trappings of modern pagan or tribal folk music, Sun and Moon Dance’s minimal instrumental arrangement features deer antlers and bells used as percussion as part of a ritualistic dance. ‘Deer Dance’ is available to stream on Bandcamp now and should be out on Spotify, etc. in the not too distant future.
Watch the trailer and set a reminder for NYTT LAND’s upcoming live stream rituals below. Also, a selection of the above-mentioned tracks has, as always, been added to the Kurgan Compass™ Spotify playlist which readers can listen to or follow here.