Solidmind, a formidable force in the downtempo and organic house scene, has released his latest EP, “Ateshgah”.
Known for his compelling releases and electrifying DJ sets/live performances, Solidmind’s global influences and early music production roots culminate in this groundbreaking four-track EP, a collaborative effort with SMHQ.
“Ateshgah” is a richly layered, four-track EP that showcases the Germany-based artist’s unique ability to fuse folkloric and tribal elements with contemporary Afro and organic house trends. The EP opens with its namesake track, “Ateshgah”, a vibrant concoction of rhythmic percussions and hypnotic choirs, setting a high bar for the rest of the EP. The following track “Cadwenza” is a cut where traditional instruments like the flute and qanun intertwine with modern electronic elements, crafting a bridge between past and present.
The third record, “Kamat”, presents a more introspective angle, with haunting vocals and subtle lead chords evoking deep emotions. Finally, “Tandana” rounds out the EP, offering a darker, dystopian vibe through its mix of conspicuous vocal phrases, clarinet licks and traditional percussive sounds.
In a striking homage to a historical marvel, Solidmind has named his latest EP after Baku’s renowned “Fire Temple”, known locally as Ateshgah. This venerable structure, located in the Surakhany district of Baku, Azerbaijan, boasts a rich tapestry of history, stretching back to the 17th and 18th centuries. Originally serving as a sacred site for Hindu, Sikh and Zoroastrian worshippers, the temple's history is etched in Persian and Indian scripts. Architecturally, it features a distinctive courtyard, flanked by monk cells and anchored by a tetrapillar-altar at its heart.
The temple's historical narrative took a turn in 1969 when its natural eternal flame, a symbol of continuous worship, was extinguished, a casualty of the extensive petroleum and gas exploitation in the region. However, the flame's legacy continues, now sustained by gas piped in from the nearby city. Ateshgah's significance extends beyond its spiritual roots; it was a nexus of pilgrimage and philosophical discourse for Zoroastrians from the Northwestern Indian subcontinent, who engaged in trade along the storied Grand Trunk Road.
The advent of the petroleum industry in Surakhany in 1883 marked the end of its religious prominence, leading to its transformation into a museum in 1975, a site that now welcomes thousands of visitors each year. Solidmind’s EP is a tribute to the temple’s rich history and cultural significance, and it is a testament to the artist’s appreciation of the temple’s unique heritage.
SMHQ is a Europe-based international collective with a mission to connect musicians from various global corners. Boasting an impressive tally of over 2 billion views on YouTube and an additional 100 million streams across diverse platforms, SMHQ brings a distinctive lens to the electronic music landscape. The collective is renowned for its influential projects and labels, including SMHQ, Sound Of Soul, Sos Music, SMHQ Room each contributing uniquely to the rich tapestry of the electronic genre.
Listen to the EP below and check it out on your favourite platforms here.