Astor – Dark Days, Cold Nights [Review]
Vancouver, BC – The Dark Days, Cold Nights instrumental tape is Vancouver native Astor’s latest work and one which he claims contains a collection of his favourite personal work. Astor has a brilliant track record, producing for the likes of KAi Sky Walker, Spark Master Tape and Casey Veggies but that doesn’t even begin to explain his musical influence. Astor has been a musician for well over a decade, with prowess in each the drums, guitar, keys, bass, and more.
It’s clear from the beginning that Astor has a wicked sense of rhythm and keen understanding of music theory. Shimmering synths, simple and clever melodies and fantastic sampling make up just a portion of the arsenal on this all instrumental album. Especially head-nodable tracks like “Under The Influence” and “Windows Down” make you wish for a member of the opposite sex and a drink in a Red SOLO cup – there’s so much raw energy in these songs. “Step To It” is another banger that could cause an earthquake at a parking lot party and blow the doors off a Honda Civic. The range of sounds and dynamics on Dark Days, Cold Nights is truly remarkable.
Astor gives the listener the impression he’s on a mission and has set out to invent a new genre of music. Much like chocolate and peanut butter became legend and strawberry and banana evolved into “strawberrybanana” as one flavour, Astor has created a cosmic symphony of hip-hop, trap, dance and electronic that exist in balanced harmony between two speakers.
From the opening track “Nothing Out There” you get the sense you’re staring through a gigantic telescope out into the Milky Way. Dark Days, Cold Nights takes you on a musical, atmospheric journey but also benefits from some entertaining Christopher Walken movie skits that are scattered throughout tying the whole experience together even further. Every track feels just the right length and despite being an instrumental album the beats pull you in so well there’s no need for an emcee.
Review written by Max Dishaw for HipHopCanada