Delving into Phantoms, the latest from Azam Ali is akin to traversing a mysterious new realm of reality. There’s bits of World music within as are grand film score elements. Then there are the beats-driven tracks bringing to mind Trip-Hop and later, bits of Goth especially when Ali takes on “Shallow Then Halo” by Cocteau Twins. Still with us? Because if you are, you’re in for a weird, wonderful trip!
But I digress.
“Hope” begins the grand opus and immediately transports listeners to another headspace entirely with this dense, moody number filled with all the beats and otherworldly elements that serve as a brief tease of the universe that’s about to open up. The title track subtly pulsates, surrounded by a synthetic blanket that brings to mind Dead Can Dance at times while “The Blue” is vibrant with this bold new soundscape that just glistens.
“Tender Violet” starts, ahem, tenderly with a string section as Ali’s vocals enter and become a burgeoning wall of sound reminiscent of Lisa Gerrard or Siouxsie Sioux with the layered instrumentation beneath intricately weaving throughout. “Twilight Sheds” is yet another stand out sonic sojourn with this one in particular diving into the Electro realm as Ali’s manipulated vox mix with the programmed beats to form the most perfect union.
“Ode To Melancholy” is serene and subtle and is exactly what the title suggests while later, “Scattered Stars” furthers Ali’s mystique within Phantoms as her soaring vocal delivery alongside strings and sustained beats propel the album into a divine stratosphere. Closing with the sprawling Electro of “Love is a Labyrinth”, Ali caps off an the album that is easily a defining piece of artistic beauty within an already impressive career.
Phantoms will be released on September 13th through Terrestrial Lane Productions. You can pre-order yours now by clicking here or here. For more on Azam Ali, including upcoming live appearances, follow the socials by clicking here and here.