There is nothing like ceremonial avant-garde music that ebbs and flows as if existing outside the scope of time and how it’s perceived by man. This ethereal aural state isn’t achieved by too many, but when it is, it simultaneously caresses the listener and elevates their spirit to otherworldly dimensions while hitting them down like a freight train out of control. The web of intricacy can be woven in a multitude of ways, but when it relies on droning, post-everything music topped off with classical instrumentation and experimental attitude above all, you get an indescribably eclectic tapestry to be in awe of for a long, long time.

S A R R A M, the Sardinia-based entity made up of the multi-instrumentalist Valerio Marras, is gearing up to release its new album Pàthei Màtos via Subsound Records on September 1, and ahead of its official release tomorrow, we’re beyond ecstatic to bring you the full premiere for it, right here, right now! You may take my words on the opening paragraph as gospel for what to expect of this monolith of a record, so be advised to take your time and sit down with an audio system of your choosing to bathe in S A R R A M‘s inexplicable sonics from below;

Pàthei Màtos – the concept taken from Aeschylus play Agamemnon – is about learning through suffering, and demonstrates this exact notion rather authentically throughout its duration. Featuring the performances of other notable musicians such as Lili Refrain, Dalila Kayros, and Tobias Vethake, each appearing on their separate songs and positions, Marras has realised the very idea of transcendence and managed to conceive it into an audible form, that speaks in as many tongues and patterns as there’s those listening to it. Marras himself characterised the creation process as follows;

As every S A R R A M record, it describes a part of my living; my existence through sound and frequencies. It’s something deep and authentic, something which can be felt, something real. The experiences with my last two albums Silenzio (2020) and Albero (2021) brought me to Pàthei Màtos. I needed to go further once again, pushing my borders even more and doing something that I had never done before; composing. Nevertheless – sometimes it’s just about floating together into a huge wave of sound.

A huge wave of sound does rather aptly describe Pàthei Màtos in essence, albeit it bears mentioning that there is also something profound and of equal measure below the surface. The album starts relatively calmly with the spine-tingling “A floating sun” that acts as an instant attention catcher, and flows directly into the droning ambient washes of the spaced out titular track featuring Lili Refrain on vocals, setting up the framework for the remainder of the album in an exquisite fashion. You may have an inkling of what it is exactly that you’re getting into, but constantly await the upcoming seconds and minutes with glee and utmost anticipation. Pàthei Màthos is a full-fledged journey, from the likes of the aerial “Korimai” to the dynamically lush “Calma” and the flooding barrages of “Lotus Quest” and “Slow care, Heavy Wires”.

Even though the ambiance is most of the time sullen and draped in melancholy, S A R R A M knows which threads to pull at any given time to keep the entirety of Pàthei Màthos enjoyable and listenable, without pushing it too far. Granted, as an experience it can be very overwhelming, but is all the better for it, as the emotional impact is harnessed in a way where it isn’t really that oppressive or burdensome to deal with, even though those components are utilized along the way to a great extent. There is a sense of vacuum-esque existence parallel to ours that really gives the album its supernatural emphasis, as even though you are there in flesh to undergo it, your soul flies far away in untold spheres.

As said, Pàthei Màthos by S A R R A M is out tomorrow, on September 1, and you can order the album in various physical concoctions from here, as well as follow the artist on Facebook and Instagram.

Photos by Jessica Secci

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