I wish I could sleep through my life.
4. 15. 16
I hate the weeks it is hard to find an album I at least like enough to write about. This was definitely one of those weeks. I am swamped with one of the most crazy and hectic months of my life, and I don’t have the time to spend hours upon hours searching for artists nobody has heard about. And as fate always has it, the moment I am about to give up looking, out of nowhere comes a gem. Sure, this artist is weird, unknown, and I can assume the majority of listeners won’t like him within the first listen. But Zen Mantra is not that kind of artist. Keep digging and digging and you will find just how phenomenal of a musician he is. I consider myself fortunate to find what I believe to be an incredible release with the sophomore full-length, self-titled Zen Mantra.
Zen Mantra is reminiscent of a more tightly structured, pop-infused, and intimate version of Tame Impala. Zen’s greatest strength involved creating multiple facets of emotion which shove and drag throughout approx. 38 minutes of constant intrigue and discovery. The opening track shifts back and forth with an outer-space vibe, creating confusion while still establishing direction for the rest of the record. The second track, Hole in My Skull, might be my favorite as each verse feels like it’s own little crescendo into the chorus almost acting as quick bursts of bright encouragement followed by a wonderfully captivating instrumental bridge led by the baseline and the vast array of instrumental parts surrounding it only to be followed by a higher intensity as well as deeper beauty within the last chorus. Another standout track is the single Maybe I’ll See you in My Dreams. This is the longest track on the record at just over 5 minutes, but is also one of the most focused tracks. The chorus works as the backbone of the song, but the highlight of the song is the bridge which brings a passion and sense of longing which is captivating. I didn’t think I was going to find an album I loved this weekend. Guess I was wrong.
For Fans Of: Tame Impala, Mew
Favorite Songs: Hole in My Skull, Remember You at All, Bailey, Maybe I’ll See You in My Dreams, Sitting at the Bottom of the Pool
Top 10 Potential: Yes
Album Cover: 9/10
Other Notable Releases this Week
The Bones of J.R. Jones – Spirit’s Furnace
Bootstraps – Homage
Snake! Snake! Snakes! – Tranquilo
What are your thoughts on the album? Love it? Hate it? Indifferent? I’d love to hear what you are thinking. Was there another album released this Friday you want to recommend to myself and others to listen to? Feel free to post any thoughts or recommendations below!
Album Cover: http://www.gorillavsbear.net/files/2016/02/ZEN-MANTRA.jpg?w=630&h=0&zc=1&s=0&a=t&q=89