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  • Writer's pictureGloria Tang

Palms Psalm New Track 'The Coast'

Eric Pasi, the man behind the Palms Psalm project, describes this music as mixing together “surf rock with island vibes, specifically recalling old Polynesian music” that Pasi – a first-generation Polynesian-American – has discovered. Although Pasi is also involved in other projects, including the Minneapolis act, Hunting Club, Palms Psalm is his attempt at “more socially-focused commentary on the climate crisis,” which is something near and dear to his heart.

Begun in 2014, these new sounds were inspired by a visit to Nukualofa, Tonga, his father’s homeland. This region, you may recall, was recently devastated by a volcano. Because Tonga is just barely above sea level, it was exposed to a tsunami caused by this volcano. Adding tragedy to tragedy, Pasi’s father, Siosi, died suddenly in 2015 and then a few years later, a cousin Pasi was close to, died in a car accident – on Pasi’s birthday, no less, near Haleiwa, Hawaii. These painful family deaths couldn’t help but impact Pasi’s music.

While many artists are little more than ‘all talk’ when it comes to social activism, Pasi is much more of an action figure, so to speak. He put his music career on hold so he could pay closer attention to climate change fixes. He may, in fact, be best known as the leader of IPS Solar, an American solar company that was acquired in April 2022 by a public utility company. Furthermore, he also wrote CleanWave: A Guide to Success in the Green Recovery. It was during this acquisition period that Pasi pivoted back to music again by tracking music that dates back as far as 2015.

This song “The Coast” is taken from his album, which comes out in the fall of 2022. As you might imagine, it incorporates reflections on Pasi’s life and heritage, as well as elements of protest over what he describes as “climate-fueled annihilation.”

This song is as gentle as rolling waves, as its intro mixes Pasi’s voice with strummed guitar. Pasi’s voice is in a high register, and somewhat back in the mix. His vocal sounds a little sad, too. Along the way, Pasi’s layers his own voice as a wordless backing chorus. The track also includes a lovely guitar-only middle section. He manages to sound sweet and sad at the same time. There is also a spoken word part interwoven into it, which has a ghostly presence.

The track is more about creating a somber mood, instead of a musical piece aimed at getting from point A to point B. Although you may not be able to make out every word Pasi sings, his overall tone does all the heavy lifting in presenting his message. It’s quite mournful in places.

Pasi deserves extra kudos for the name of his project. Palms Psalm nicely combines nature with spirituality. Also, the track “The Coast” plays out a little bit like a psalm put to music. Then again, many Biblical psalms are actual songs, only we don’t know the original music that went with them.

At just 3:30, “The Coast” is but a small taste of Eric Pasi’s music. But it’s tasty enough to make one want much more.

Listen to 'The Coast' here:


-Dan MacIntosh


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