Space music icon Steve Roach teams up with drummer/shamanic practitioner Bryon Metcalf on this two-disc set to produce a vivid tone poem replete with serpentine rhythms and subterranean sounds. The serpent, which sheds its skin, is a common symbol in shamanic lore, and can be used as a focus in departing from the old self and transforming into the new. Clarion tones echo sharply between wet cave walls, get caught upon the wind, or ride the electric exhales of serpents. "Rite of Passage" features Middle Eastern drums, shakers, and tambourines that wind along a zigzagging rhythmic path, conjuring images of ceremonial processions and slithering serpents. On "Shedding the Skin," Roach sends doleful, breathy notes from his didgeridoo over a framedrum patter that mimics a snake's scales. Jim Cole's overtone chanting gives "Serpent Clan" and "Beating Heart of the Dragon Mother" a primordial dusting, while Lena Stevens's chant on "Ochua" adds the seductive mystery of a jungle siren. While it can be useful for serious visionary purposes, this space music does stay surprisingly serene throughout.