The album gets underway with “Tomorrow’s Promises” and a deep, social-political quote from the late THE BEATLES icon John Lennon…it’s in its own way revolutionary, urging society to wake up to the lies fed down to them by government and world leaders, for tomorrows promises are essentially false, and we fall for it every time we vote…musically it’s delivered with a hard dose of riff-fuelled metal; both guitar work and percussion is assertive here while vocally, Nico sings with a disdain and disbelief, before the prog-inspired qualities reveal themselves near the end with a gentle shift in tone and a piano-led fill, soothing the listener, before the guitar, steeped in melody reawakens like an epiphany; a strong start here. “Wild Beauty” is much slower to begin with and leans more towards doom-based metal in its morose tone…you can hear the likes of Opeth but also early PARADISE LOST too as the track rounds off with surging, deep, bass-driven riffs.
“Blow!!!” continues on from this and here you can sense that they’ve derived influence from rock and metal both old and new for a well-rounded sound; here for instance you can taste the classic style of early METALLICA but melodically you get a sense of GHOST layered within the tapestry of the track, while “Gates”, utilising a solid up-tempo rhythm, sounding energised and to a degree spacey, has elements of KILLING JOKE, resulting in an album highlight, yet on the flip-side but no less appealing, is the gentle, acoustic-led “Song Of The Mountain”, with its subtle native/tribal feel courtesy of wood instruments and pipes; it’s really quite enchanting, a welcome respite.
The good thing about prog-metal is essentially the open-minded approach to writing and playing, there are no real boundaries or restrictions, and the possibilities are endless when it comes to experimenting with sound, which is why this album is so rich in diversity…”The Butterflies Carrousel” , despite its initial ferocity transitions into an almost soft-jazz interlude…it’s got brass elements and is quite emotional, almost soulful, before we end rather conceptually with the double header of “Conscious Minds” and “13 Lunas”…touching upon the album art; the notion of interstellar, large scale Ouroboros..the infinite cycle of creation and destruction, it’s beyond our control and we must essentially accept it, free our minds of worry and live…cleanse ourselves mentally, the closing track fading out, as though a metaphor for letting go of negativity, setting ourselves free and it works very well. There may be a lot to take in upon the first play-through, but the depth here only makes “New Era” that much better with each and every listen. With their name taken from the 6th brightest star in the constellation of Orion, Zaiph are prepared to boldly go where, no sound has gone before.