Wow, we didn’t expect this!

Jhelisa has always twisted pop into new shapes but this is jumped to the frontline. An enigmatic, tripped out drone that sounds closer to Sunn O))) or Alice Coltrane the new single is a stunning, mind blowing work.

Celebrated as much as an enigmatic, musical maverick, as an outrageously gifted vocalist and songwriter, Jhelisa was the name to know in the 1990’s. Her thrillingly daring music – a mix of trip-hop, jazz, avant-garde, gospel and soul – was underpinned by a glorious, deeply seductive voice, remarkable in its intensity and spiritual force.

Now, returning to Dorado Records, Jhelisa releases 7 Keys V.1 & V.2, an adventurous concept album based on ancient eastern music, the 7 keys of the musical scale and their sonic frequencies, with each track aligning to one of the 7 chakras. At its heart is Jhelisa’s glorious voice; spiritual, seductive and intensely powerful. Balanced with contemporary sounds, this cosmic collection is as much for connection, reflection, meditation and balance as for lovers of ambient beats.

Combining three of the album’s musical pieces – Solar Plexus, The Root and 8N All – the mesmerising, abstract video features dancers, yogis and Jhelisa, with her mother as the peaceful, great, old sage, in kaleidoscopic, psychedelic form.

Moving together they express the music through body movements; “My intention was to present another way to ‘just be’… neglecting many of the familiar feelings that daily life tasks us with, an escapism within reality. I also wanted to craft images that present something different every time you view it” explains Jhelisa

‘Atmospheria’ begins with a soul-opening opus of radiating frequencies, resonating at 320 Hz, the same as that of the body’s solar plexus chakra, while The Root in the key of C is a rich wall of transcendent, vocal om sound. The result is a soundscape rich in mystery and drenched in Jhelisa’s subtle and exquisite vocal power, dissolving into a warm gong bath of sound.

The video was directed by fellow Atlanta resident and rising star, 23-year-old Aaron Dylan Kearns, an underground filmmaker, surrealist and musician. For Jhelisa, it was important for the project to be multigenerational (the youngest participant was 15) to observe how they find peace and balance in the chaos we all face right now. “Aaron is just brilliant, I’m so happy and proud to have his visual voice out there…through my project I think we get a glimpse of how the youth see this world.”

New-age ideology has peppered much of Jhelisa’s musical output, so a concept album based on her research into the use of sacred drone tones in ancient Eastern music comes as no surprise. Now, in the run up to the label’s 30-year anniversary, Dorado reunites with Jhelisa to present 7 Keys V.1 & V.2, a deeply resonant body of work based around sustained long notes that weave around grounding heartbeat drums and circular, meditative sounds. Jhelisa’s extraordinary vocal ability makes these explorations especially powerful. It’s a record with a broad audience, from spiritual listeners who’ll immediately recognise the music’s deep harmonic intention, as well as fans of ambient electronica sounds. With Jhelisa’s unadorned voice at the heart of the sonic journey, 7 Keys is universal music for everyone.

Listen to ‘Solar Plexus’ here

‘7 Keys V.1 & V.2’ is released digitally on Dorado Records on 8th October alongside ‘Atmospheria’ its accompanying video.

Previous articleAudiobooks: Astro Tough – album review
Next articleGreg Gilbert (from the band Delays) has died
Award winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here