It’s been nine years, almost to the day, that Nika Roza Danilova released her debut full-length on Sacred Bones Records.
The Spoils – and its 2010 follow up Stridulum II – were perfect distillations of the Zola Jesus project, part noise-as-catharsis, part high romanticism.
While Danilova continued to expand her sound, moving to Mute and working with David Lynch collaborator Dean Hurley for her more pop-sounding Taiga LP, her love for harsh, confrontational sounds was never fully abandoned. Indeed, like the darker impulses of the human psyche, a recurrent theme for Zola Jesus, they remain present, buried just below the surface.
With new album Okovi marking a return to both Sacred Bones and a darker, more primitivist sound, it makes perfect sense that Danilova’s Selections is an unsettling, extraordinary listen that nonetheless throws light on the constellation of inspirations at the heart of the project. Featuring black metallers Majestas Leprosus and Copenhagen noise artist Puce Mary alongside Shostakovich and Bosnian folk star Zehra Deović.
Zola Jesus’ new album Okovi will be released 8 September via Sacred Bones Records.
She appears at Village Underground, London on 7 November and Paradiso, Amsterdam on 28 November.