ZaumWorshippers of the riffs of Sleep and Om, set down your bongs and take note; Canadian duo Zaum are about to become your new favourite band. The Middle Eastern sounding twang of the sitar that is the driving force behind this 48-minute long opus will set up camp in the realm of your subconscious and take you on a trip you won’t soon forget.

This release is a bold move for a debut, but one that certainly works; it’s not the most accessible of music, but if you’re willing to invest the time to really listen then it will certainly pay off, as it connects with its audience on a deep spiritual level. The tone on songs such as ‘Zealot’ and ‘The Red Sea’ can be a bit heavy handed on the drone side at times, but the pairing make up for this with delicate ambient layers and occasional enormous riffs.

The guitars, drums and ethereal, reverb heavy vocals move at a glacial pace which inspires both delight and frustration, however, the sitar genuinely is the instrument to pay attention to – it ties the rest of the instrumentals together and provides a totally new dimension to this record. Although this is a challenging listen, it’s in equal measures rewarding and deserves to be played loud in order to truly appreciate intense emotional charge of the songs.

(7/10 Angela Davey)