Glacial and expansive, but also intimate and deeply, deeply personal – Astraea’s music is full of beautiful contradictions. This somehow seems very fitting for a woman whose voice you will already know from her widely-heard work for the worlds of advertising and reality shows – probably about as far as you can get from the thoughtful, introspective work of Astraea.
Branching out to record music on her own terms with the release of the ‘Tonight I Run’ EP, Astraea now shows how skilled she is at creating an atmosphere within moments, and expressing complex emotions within the luscious folds of her music. Listening to this EP feels like hurtling across a beautiful landscape with the breeze in your hair, summiting a mountain and seeing the sun glinting off the snow atop it, or taking a deep breath before plunging into an ice cold lake in the dawn light.
It’s catharsis, it’s celebration and it’s beauty and strength held in vulnerability, following in the footsteps of other cinematic pop acts such as Hozier and Lorde. Astraea’s songwriting shines through in the fragility of a track like ‘My Own Worst Enemy’, which sees her speaking with unassuming honesty to her own inner critic, over the top of a beautiful piano part.
If ‘My Own Worst Enemy’ is the darkest point, ‘Carry On’ is the recovery. It illustrates the point in time where you decide to continue on after difficult moments, after allowing yourself the time and space to be broken. Knowing that it’s time to continue onwards. Astraea’s vocal acts as a guiding light for those in that position, allowing them the courtesy of acknowledging their troubles before gently picking themselves up and limping on, continuing with their broken hearts and beginning to heal.
The ‘Tonight I Run’ EP is a glorious exploration of the full range of human emotion, set to exquisite piano and synths. It’s a triumph of an EP, and signals big things still to come in the future for this songstress.
‘Tonight I Run’ is out everywhere on the 18th September 2020.