Khuda ‘Ahura Mazdah’ CDEP 2008

Khuda 'Ahura Mazdah' CDEP 2008Anyone keeping an eye on these hallowed webpages will have seen that an interview was conducted with this Leeds based two piece instrumental band this month, where their current EP ‘Ahura Mazdah’ was plugged. Having read said interview, it was with intrigue that the CD was placed on my stereo, conjuring up imagines of two mad scientist types with walls of amps creating twisted sounds…

It is clear from first listen that a lot of thought goes into Khuda, right down to the name of the band – Khuda meaning holy in Urdu – and similarly the name of the EP, Ahura Mazdah is the supreme deity of the Zoroastrianism Religion whose roots can be found in 6th century Persia. Sounds are very important to the band, as can be heard on the layers of lush atmospherics that permeate the record.

It begins with the understated simple intro to ‘Beware of the Monster’ before it crashes in with a wall of clashing sound, frenetic drumming and jarring riffs. Being an instrumental act means that you have to approach listening to the music in a different way – there is no hooky vocal melody (even if they have said never say never…) to pull on your focus, you have to let the music wash over you and let it take you on a journey as opposed to leading you…

Okay so this review is beginning to drift into hippy sounding bollocks right now, but the music itself is complex and demanding, the wealth of sound created is challenging in itself and very much about feel – taking you from blissed out ambience to raging chaos often within a time change and passages which evoke a genuine air of menace.

Ultimately ‘Ahura Mazdah’ sounds great, the guitar tone on the introduction to Once.Twice.Thrice is in itself, pardon the pun, divine, and the rest of the track swirls as the drums push the music urgently forward. It is clear that the writing team of Tom Brooke (Guitar) and Robin Timmis (drums) have an abundance of ideas and a great feel for the music they are creating.

At times it can be hard to maintain focus with so much going on and no vocals to pull you in but that is probably more a comment on my attention span rather the quality of what has been produced as a huge riff or drum fill is never far away from bringing you back to what is going on.

Creative and intelligent. Check it out.

Label: Norrland Recordings / Self Released

Scribed by: Mark Hunt-Bryden