5 Moments of Profound Spirituality in Tash Sultana’s Debut LP, ‘Flow State’

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Photo: Dara Munnis

Tash Sultana’s highly anticipated album, Flow State, is nothing short of an emotional tour de force. We knew this one would be big when we heard the singles “Free Mind” and “Harvest Love,” but what Sultana delivered on the completed work is an all-encompassing spiritual experience. The Australian artist’s videos went viral, taking her from performing on the streets to playing major festivals and arenas. Her latest releases continue to establish her as an iconic artist in the making, proving that her virality was no fluke. 

Regardless of religious affiliation (or lack thereof), we felt an intangible internal uprooting upon listening through this album. Here are the 5 most enlightening moments we had while listening to Flow State.

1. Processing the lyrics behind “Big Smoke.”

Tash Sultana has a way of writing simple lyrics with language that packs a punch, not stylistically unlike the Grateful Dead. The second track on Flow State is titled, “Big Smoke,” and features psychedelically visual lyrics outlining a loss of identity. Sultana sings,

I took a trip to the doctor and I based it on my tongue. He read my whole brain, started “Hell, it’s begun”

The world drained from colour

Black and white was the sun

I forgot my own name

I forgot to have one

2. The vocals on “Pink Moon.”

We’re speechless. Go listen to “Pink Moon,” minute 3:22 to be exact, and let Sultana’s husky vocals engulf you. Emotionally charged is an understatement; this is a case of electric shock.

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Photo: Dara Munnis

3. When the Violin Hits in “Seven.”

“Seven” is an unexpected song, but then again, nothing that Sultana does is expected. It takes time and care to build, but no vocals ever appear. The chord progression gives a coming-of-age-story and becomes more and more intricate with each layer added. The most breathtaking moment is the entrance of the violin, which is crystal clear and cuts like a diamond. The music swells and falls, followed by the divine strumming of a harp. The song ends with the same violin, soaring over the music with unearthly grace.

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4. Listening to “Blackbird” the whole way through.

This song inherently carries a deeply personal significance for many, as they associate it with “Blackbird” by The Beatles. The track begins with an insane instrumental, epic and mounting like Led Zepellin’s intro to “Stairway to Heaven.” The vocals come in after the three minute mark, and the remaining six minutes of song oscillate between heavy hitting jams and mind-altering tempo changes. The subtle similarities to classic rock bands enhance the overall connectivity of this song, offering a wide range of audiences something vaguely familiar. She brings the listener along as she takes a heady journey with her instrument in hand.

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Photo: Dara Munnis 

5. When we realized she did it all herself.

Raw talent and musical chops are different, but Sultana blows both out of the water. She is credited on the album as the singer, songwriter and producer, in addition to playing every single instrument on the project–talk about inspiring.

Listen to Flow State on a rainy afternoon, or let Tash Sultana guide you through a spiritual journey at one of her many upcoming shows if you have the chance.

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