PrintYoga has become quite the fad in recent years. It seems like there’s a new joint popping up every other week. Each pushing a new style, better accommodations, and better results. The only thing that has even remotely piqued my interest is  the free beer administered at the local brewery at the completion of their Sunday yoga sessions. But it turns out, there is a yoga course for people just like me. Black Yo)))ga is a vinyasa-styled center in Pennsylvania that focuses their sessions around metal music, rather than the traditional yoga/tree-hugger noise. Wanting to produce their own mix, the husband-wife team hired some musicians to create their own soundtrack. The result is Asanas Ritual, Vol. 1; dark, instrumental meditation music crafted for that yoga-loving metal-head through a delivery of black, doom, stoner, drone, and avante garde atmospheres. No, I’m not joking. I have to admit that, at first, I found this absolutely absurd. But Black Yo)))ga is serious in their mission to design an auditorial median that speaks to those extremist clientele that may be too frightened to face their addictions, depressions, vices, and angers with a standard chain-gym yoga experience. Though this may represent a TYMHM piece that isn’t exactly 3.5+ material, it conveys such passion from its creators that I felt it needed a shoutout. For many, this atmospheric and emotional soundscape may provide the perfect background music, while others may find Asanas Ritual, Vol. 1 to be a little bit more.

Overall, the songwriting of Asanas Ritual, Vol. 1 isn’t astounding, but it has a deep atmosphere that actually works. Once absorbed, it becomes a series of chapters that unlock your deepest frustrations with the modern world (or maybe that’s the 9% ABV IPA I just downed following an hour-long session of perspiration and dehydration). In general, there are no standout “tracks” on this album. Instead, it’s one continuous theme meant to drag you deep within yourself and – honestly – persuade your troubled soul to let everything fucking go. Asanas combination of haunting rhythms, feedback guitars, droning downbeats, ominous bass plods, muscle-relaxing cello and violin segments, and haunting female swoonings meld this eight-track release into a blackened spearhead that rips through self-doubt and allows hope to shine. Asanas is a gradual build from the opening chords of “A Wandering Through” to the final fade out of “Loopholes in the Universe.” It viciously crescendos with the droning harshness of “Negative Confession” before the angelic female drones of “Lament” drag the album into a million-gear downshift to Asanas conclusion.

BlackYoga_2015

Asanas Ritual, Vol. 1 is both captivating and spiritual even if Black Yo)))ga‘s debut isn’t exactly stellar material. However, the concept is quite unique and it appears to be reaching many a metal-folk longing for a connection to the yoga world and its sweaty, ass-shaping attire. The production is quite impressive and its DR8 rating gives life to your personal Black Yo)))ga sessions via their session DVD (purchasable through the Black Yo)))ga website). If you’re into this sort of thing (or not), Asanas is definitely worth a listen. If it results in respect or uncontrollable laughter is based solely on the listener’s interpretation. I will leave you, dear reader, to be the judge.

Tracks to check: Ummm… all of them?

Share →
  • This actually is pretty relaxing.

    • Monsterth Goatom

      Reminds me I should listen to Loops Of Doom again. I also find that quite relaxing.

  • André Snyde Lopes

    This o))) thing is the drone equivalent of trading “u”s for “v”s in black metal.

  • Ein Sophistry

    Not a yoga rat but a huge ambient nerd, and this is definitely diddling my ear chakras nicely.

  • madhare

    I have to say I was a bit skeptical, but it’s not bad at all! Fits well together with some gloomy soundtracks and ambient.

    Couldn’t care less about yoga, but I often like having stuff like this in the background when I’m writing etc.

    • sir_c

      I did not like yoga either until i discovered what the ladies were wearing.

  • Hulksteraus

    “(or maybe that’s the 9% ABV IPA I just downed following an hour-long session of perspiration and dehydration)”

    Craft Beer…

    Dr AN “Hipster” Grier! (and is that a beard underneath the surgical mask??)

    • Dr. A.N. Grier

      How dare you!!!! And yes… It’s a big burly beard.

      • Hulksteraus

        ****Shhhhh – I don’t mind a craft beer myself****

  • De2013

    Really great how they discovered a niche market. I will check this out. Thanks for the review.

  • John Mosley

    I am contacting the NAACP over the insensitive bandproject name.

  • [not a Dr]

    Just got told by my best half that I’m buying this.

  • Kyle Elliott

    I live in PA. Might have to pay these folks a visit sometime

  • Yoga Metal Band Name Game! Go!

  • Innit Bartender

    As a guy who has used Black Sabbath’s debut as meditation material for 30 years, I am finally SO glad that someone else has found the connection between metal and meditation. It was there all along.

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

    Yoga Metal… Holy shit, there truly are no borders Metal can´t cross… and conquer!