Anima Fuga is the first album by Ra Djan. I have created the album in collaboration with Mishroom – Israel based producer and guitarist. I wrote most of the scores and sound production and arrangements we did together with Mishroom. He did the final mix and master as well.
The first album is electronic but it has a rock vibe because of lots of live instruments, rock attitude to arrangements and mixing.
I have started experimenting with electronic music in 2006 and it took me long 7 years to accomplish the first full-length canvas. A university and a long journey around the globe were the barriers on road of sonic creation and production. A single acoustic guitar in the middle of the forest, in urban anarchist squat or somewhere in the mountains is obviously not enough to record a tune.
Opening track “Cube” is a reminiscence of two favorite music acts – Pink Floyd and Jean Michel Jarre. A gilmourish guitar and Jarre’s atmospheric keys. That is the only space ambient track I have ever wrote. Actually, my brother Drew created the initial tune and atmosphere of the track. Respect to him!
Maytreya is a powerful track with mighty beats, ethnic melodies and Tibetan throat singing that I have learned during my stay in Altai Mountains in Russia and Himalaya Mountains in India, Himachal Pradesh. Again, my brother wrote the main ethnic riff of the track – the initial idea of the track belong to him. The main influence of Maytreya is Prodigy. Albeit Prodigy are far away from ethnic tunes and they don’t have bigbeat & downtempo tracks in 103 bpm.
Jordan Rain is a first track that I have recorded in my life. At the beginning, the track had no guitars – I used marimbas and kalimbas to play the main melody. Those ethnic instruments remain in the final version even though they have no leading role. I have added guitars for I wanted to make a real space rock surf! I have never heard of the modern revival of the original 60’s surf and moreover — a surf with electronic elements that are able to create space landscapes. Mishroom wrote the bass guitar score and arranged bridge parts.
Anima Fuga is a title track and the longest on the album. Epic tune with four different parts in different keys. The first part of the track is as the previous one – an ode to space surfing while the other parts transform into the ethnic jaw-harp trance.
I am the master of that ancient ethnic and, at the same time, international instrument. I have a collection of approximately 70 pieces of different kind from different regions of the world. The jaw harp has a constant pitch but one can hear overtones of the natural scale. I have arranged jaw harps in such a way that four of them in different pitch are playing at the same time thus forming a chord, then in turn of the next chord I switch instrument using a special holder. Four players needed to play that orchestra score live but I manage to do it alone with a looper on the background.
There are no direct influences on that track and I even cannot think of anything that can be responsible of indirect impact.
Ra Maayan is a fifth track on the album and it is a pure cyber shaman piece. Mesmerizing oriental rhythms with ethnic melodies, space guitar solo, whirling synthesizers and Tuvan throat singing – kargyraa. The track opens with the swamp sounds that I created using vocoder and two Hungarian jaw harps by Szilagyi – they call them Doromb.
Ra Maayan is an initiation song with genesis, evolution, death or rejection of the old skin and rebirth. That is a reconstruction of the shaman journey to the otherworld, a rough connection with transcendent spirits. Each travel is some kind of initiation of the hero: death in a former state and regeneration in a new one. Human life is divided into a set of stages – each one with the beginning and the end. Transitions between stages are various – from sharp and radical to smooth and imperceptible.
In “Youth without youth” – a short story by Romanian historian of religion Mircea Eliade — I read of a person who periodically entered the state of uncontrolled trance and starts talking in ancient languages: Babylonian, Akkadian, proto-Elamite. With every new session, the chosen language becomes older than the previous one with the total horrible tendency to convert into subhuman gurgling.
That small fragment had a big impact on me as a musician interested in ancient musilanguage and as a cultural historian — in prehistoric evolution. Extremely thrilling to “touch” the half-forgotten life of an ancient man, to understand his way of thinking, everyday life, the sound of his speech and first musical experiences. Actually, singing language precedes speech as the theory of musilanguage put it.
In “Ra Maayan” I wanted to reproduce that dusty, scratched on the walls of the caves language. As a result, I have created a stylized energetic dance without semantics, a pure emotional impulse. A musilanguage became one of the musical instruments, was woven into music while remaining a pure energetic form without meaning – a cyber-shamanic imitation of prehistoric rituals.