Nika Roza Danilova aka Zola Jesus has announced her return with a new album on her old label Sacred Bones with the album Okovi, which is dark and electronic like her earlier work on that label.

Live bandmate Alex DeGroot, producer/musician WIFE, cellist/noise-maker Shannon Kennedy from Pedestrian Deposit, and percussionist Ted Byrnes help out.

Danilova has also announced a European and US tour which will be in Dublin at Whelan’s on November 6th. Tickets priced €22 go on sale Friday 14th July at 9am through & usual outlets nationwide.

‘Soak’ is written through the lens of serial killer’s victim, clinging to life and about to be dumped in the water. ‘Exhumed’ is below.

“I was thinking about this crucial moment inside the victim’s mind, when she knows she’s going to die. She thinks back at her life and the futility of the decisions she made, when in the end her life would be cut short against her will,” says Zola Jesus of the track.

“What’s the point of trying to navigate life if you don’t even get to choose how it ends? Instead of letting her fate be determined by someone else, she takes back control and turns it around, so instead, in her mind, she is choosing to die. She lets the killer assist her in suicide, as she gets tossed into the water and slowly drowns.Through writing this song the story evolved within me, and I saw how it mirrored my own feelings inside.”

“Last year, I moved back to the woods in Wisconsin where I was raised. I built a little house just steps away from where my dilapidated childhood tree fort is slowly recombining into earth. Okovi was fed by this return to roots and several very personal traumas.

While writing Okovi, I endured people very close to me trying to die, and others trying desperately not to. Meanwhile, I was fighting through a haze so thick I wasn’t sure I’d find my way to the other side. Death, in all of its masks, has been encircling everyone I love, and with it the questions of legacy, worth, and will.

Okovi is a Slavic word for shackles. We’re all shackled to something—to life, to death, to bodies, to minds, to illness, to people, to birthright, to duty. Each of us born with a unique debt, and we have until we die to pay it back. Without this cost, what gives us the right to live? And moreover, what gives us the right to die? Are we really even free to choose?

This album is a deeply personal snapshot of loss, reconciliation, and a sympathy for the chains that keep us all grounded to the unforgiving laws of nature. To bring it to life, I decided to enlist the help of Alex DeGroot, who has been the only constant in my live band and helped mix the Stridulum EP back in 2010. It will be released on Sacred Bones, the closest group of people I’ll ever have to blood-bound family.”


16/09 – Hudson, NY – Basilica Soundscape
21/09 – San Diego, CA – Casbah
22/09 – Phoenix, AZ – Valley Bar
23/09 – Santa Fe, NM – Meow Wolf
25/09 – Dallas, TX – Kessler Theater
26/09 – Austin, TX – North Door
27/09 – New Orleans, LA – Siberia
28/09 – Atlanta, GA – Aisle 5
29/09 – Asheville, NC – The Mothlight
30/09 – Washington, DC – U Street
01/10 – Boston, MA – ICA Boston
03/10 – Philadelphia, PA – PhilaMOCA
04/10 – Brooklyn, NY – Rough Trade
06/10 – Toronto, ON – Longboat Hall
07/10 – Detroit, MI – Assemble Sound Church
08/10 – Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall
09/10 – Madison, WI – Majestic Theatre
10/10 – St. Paul, MN – Amsterdam Bar & Hall
11/10 – Omaha, NE – Waiting Room
14/10 – Salt Lake City, UT – Amsterdam Bar & Hall
16/10 – Oakland, CA – Starline Social Club
17/10 – San Francisco, CA – Independent
19/10 – Seattle, WA – Crocodile
20/10 – Portland, OR – The Old Church
21/10 – Vancouver, BC – Venue
24/10 – Malmo, SE – Ikonst
25/10 – Gothenburg, SE – Nefertiti
26/10 – Copenhagen, DK – Jazzhouse
28/10 – Cologne, DE – Luxor
29/10 – Brighton, UK – The Haunt
31/10 – Glasgow, UK – St. Luke’s
01/11 – Manchester, UK – Band on the Wall
02/11 – Leeds, UK – Belgrave Music Hall
03/11 – Norwich, UK – Arts Centre
04/11 – Liverpool, UK – Stanley Theatre
06/11 – Dublin, IE – Whelan’s
07/11 – London, UK – Village Underground
08/11 – Paris, FR – Le Point Ephémère
12/11 – Geneva, CH – La Gravière
14/11 – Roma, IT – Monk
15/11 – Bologna, IT – Locomotiv
16/11 – Bern, CH – Dampfzentrale
17/11 – Milan, IT – Magnolia
18/11 – Zagreb, HR – Mocvara
20/11 – Nuremburg, DE – Z-Bau
21/11 – Vienna, AT – Fluc
22/11 – Berlin, DE – SO36
23/11 – Leipzig, DE – UT Connewitz
25/11 – Frankfurt, DE – Mousonturm
27/11 – Brussels, BE – Beursschouwburg
28/11 – Amsterdam, NL – Paradiso
29/11 – Hamburg, DE – Uebel & Gefahrlich

Posted on July 11th, 2017


Tracks of the Week playlist

1. Alt-J – ‘Hunger Of The Pine’

A slow-moving weighted return for the Mercury Prize-winning band who manage to defy expectations by legitimately sampling Miley Cyrus on their new single from second album This Is All Yours. This coarses through the veins the more you listen to it.

2. Jamie xx – ‘All Under One Roof Raving’

“I wanted to make something I could play out when I got home that reminded people of how good home is.”

“I made All Under One Roof Raving whilst on the tail end of another year on the road with The xx. I was missing life in London and trawling through any music and videos that reminded me of home. One in particular I found very inspiring, Mark Leckey’s ‘Fiorucci Made Me Hardcore.’

3. FKA Twigs – ‘Two Weeks’

Twigs sits on a throne in an Egyptian-style temple, looking bronzed, exotic and elegant, singing the words which obfuscate explicitness through her hushed singing and style. There are no others in her category.

4. Lethal Dialect and Jacknife J – ‘Headstrong’ feat. Jess Kav

On the first single from the album, ‘Headstrong’ which does feature a great vocal hook from Dublin singer Jesse Kav (who appears throughout the album), JackKnifeJ’s brooding bumping ambient production (reminds me of Banks’ ‘Drowning’ in tone) is the perfect backdrop for Paulie remaining positive among the curveballs that life throws at him.

5. Rustie – ‘Raptor’

The bass on this track gave me a headache when I first heard it. But there’s something endearing about a producer who uses the mechanisms of trap music in such a bright and brazen way that subtly subverts the form. Clap trap happy music from Rustie’s second album Green Language out in August on Warp.

6. Jessie Ware – ‘Tough Love’

No sign of Ms. Ware going full-on electronic-pop just yet. Instead, her new Benny Blanco and Two Inch Punch-produced single sticks to her modern Sadé  R&B template. Super smooth.

7. Carriages – ‘Roots’

The Dublin folk electronic duo’s encouraging new single.

Their new double A-side single, takes it first step forward with ‘Roots’ (‘Significant Landscapes’ is the other track). It’s their most direct track yet, a suitably clip clopping rhythm and synth stabs swell towards the chorus of Page singing “roots run deeper when we play / roots grow high when we lay,” which despite the recordings of the metropolis, firmly place the song in a more pastoral setting.

8. Spies – ‘Moosehead’

The Dublin band stretch their indie-rock M.O. into some more expansive, yet past-referencing.

9. Zola Jesus – ‘Dangerous Days’

The first single from the 25 year-old’s fifth album is her most accessible yet. That glorious warble is still in full flow. Free download.

10. Busdriver – ‘Ego Death’ (feat. Aesop Rock & Danny Brown)

The first single from Busdriver’s forthcoming Big-Dada-released Perfect Hair album ropes in cackling Danny Brown and old favourite Aesop Rock on a Jeremiah Jae beat.

Posted on June 27th, 2014


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The Nialler9 TXFM show` airs every Thursday night at 10pm for two hours. You can listen on FM, online, the TXFM app or if you missed it, on the listen back function on the site. Last night’s show featuring 22 brand new tracks in indie, electronic, rap, R&B and dance.

Listen: Hour One

Listen: Hour Two

Hour One

  1. alt-J – ‘Hunger of the Pine’
  2. Lone – ‘Airglow Fires’
  3. EMBRZ – ‘Slow Down’
  4. Carriages – ‘Roots’
  5. Zola Jesus – ‘Dangerous Days’
  6. God Knows + mynameisjOhn – ‘Throw The Spear’
  7. Kali – ‘Neon’
  8. Lethal Dialect and Jacknife J – ‘Headstrong’ feat. Jess Kav
  9. FKA Twigs – ‘Two Weeks’
  10. Jessie Ware – ‘Tough Love’
  11. Orlando Volcano – ‘Chimi’
  12. Ménage à Trois – ‘Bobby’s Prism’

Hour Two

  1. Rustie – ‘Raptor’
  2. Modeselektor – ‘I’m not into Twerk, I’m into KrafTwerk’
  3. Jamie xx – ‘All Under One Roof Raving’
  4. Ambassadeurs – ‘Hide and Seek’
  5. Busdriver – ‘Ego Death’ (feat. Aesop Rock & Danny Brown)
  6. Bishop Nehru – ‘You Stressin’
  7. Sega Bodega – ‘Jansen’
  8. Catching Flies – ‘Stay Forever’ (Live Version)
  9. Floating Points – ‘King Bromeliad’
  10. Woman’s Hour – ‘Conversations’ (Fort Romeau Remix)

Posted on June 27th, 2014


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The best of new album streams in A-Z form. Plenty more in the Streams category.

Boom Bip – Zig Zaj

DRC Music – Kinshasa One Two (Damon Albarn and more)

DJ Shadow – The Less You Know, The Better (alt link)
Dum Dum Girls – Only In Dreams
Land Lovers – Confidants
Ryan Adams – Ashes & Fire
Spank Rock – Everything Is Boring & Everyone Is A Liar
The Stepkids – The Stepkids
Walls – Coracle
Youth Lagoon – The Year of Hibernation
Zola Jesus – Conatus

Posted on September 27th, 2011


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Funny I was only watching this yesterday. ‘Vessel’ is the first new track from Nika Danilova aka Zola Jesus‘ forthcoming album Conatus, the followup to Stridulum II. More details at State.

There’s less of a gothic vibe here, more of an industrial backing track flavour but Danilova’s voice remains as magnetising as ever, particularly during those choruses.

Download: Vessel – Zola Jesus

Zola Jesus play Electric Picnic.

Posted on June 29th, 2011


A spectacular version of ‘Night’ by Zola Jesus for The Soundcheck Sessions helped by some pounding reverbed drums and expansive ghostly vocal production. I prefer this to the recorded version.

In other Zola Jesus news, she recently lent vocals to a Burial Hex tune (as debuted on Stereogum) . The original 20-minute version can be heard at Ernes Time. She also plays the Picnic.

Download: Burial Hex Feat. Zola Jesus – The Far (Horrid Red Radio Remix)

She also collaborated with Prefuse 73 for his new album The Only She Chapters as well on this joint mixtape:

Download: Prefuse 73 + Zola Jesus Mix Pt 1.The Misanthrope Meditation

Posted on April 29th, 2011


After announcements of Best Coast and the initial lineup in recent weeks, Electric Picnic have added more acts:

Public Enemy
The Drums
Blonde Redhead
Zola Jesus
The Undertones
The Family Stone
Joan As Policewoman
Power Of Dreams
Best Coast

In other festival news:

Spank Rock, Richter Collective, Bombay Bicycle Club for Forbidden Fruit.

Big Chill 2011 line up – Kanye West, Chemical Brothers & Rodrigo Y Gabriela headlining.

Festival roundup: Green Man, Sonar, Melt, Helium Music Festival, Open House, Éigse & Flat Lake.

De La Soul & Hypnotic Brass Ensemble for Galway Arts Festival.

Temple House Festival announces new names.

Posted on April 20th, 2011


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Glasser at CMJ 2010 by Will Deitz

Dave Rawkblog’s 2010 Bands You Can Ignore list is a fine example of blog aggravation. Containing a list of 2010 bands you don’t need to hear before making a year-end list, it was bound to stir up some strong opinion. There are certainly a few bands on that list that personally I’d never tell you to ignore. Foals? Glasser? Both have made brilliant albums this year. LCD Soundsystem? Tanlines? Please. Their Settings EP is one of the best short-form releases I’ve heard in the last 10 or so months.

Dave’s choices are his personal opinion and as much as the internet tells you otherwise, you have to respect that. There is an explanation. What concerns me though, is the Rawkblog criteria for the list. These artists are not bad just not worth your time or as he put it not special. Are we demanding brilliance and uniqueness from the start now? Is there no room for musical growth anymore? Or is instant dismissal a better option?

Posted on October 26th, 2010


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Positioning itself as a similar city festival experience as Primavera Sound in Barcelona except at the opposite end of the Summer, Berlin Music Festival took place up in Tempelhof, a former city airport superceded by Schönefeld and now, cleverly utilised as a public park and convention centre. Taking place over Friday and Saturday last weekend, the programme was reliant on the likes of LCD Soundsystem, Hot Chip, Robyn, Fever Ray and Soulwax to bring in the crowds. Weekend tickets were €70 with the added bonus of staying in a Berlin apartment or hotel.

This unique setting gives the festival itself a delicious oddness but also poses some problems too (more on that later though). Walking into the arrivals hall and you are greeted with baggage belts, classical [ref] architecture, an old-school departures board showing the timetable for the day, still standing passport control booths and the remains of Popkomm – the music industry trade show which overlapped with the festival on the Friday.

Posted on September 21st, 2010


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A monthly chart to cover the often-overlooked albums that make up my listening habits. These are the 20 albums this month that got the most plays, the most interest and the albums that were my favourites throughout August. I’ve included EPs too.

Album name links to previous blog post where relevant. Full album list with links below.

See the full album chart »

Posted on September 3rd, 2010


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I posted this a while back but now it’s embedabble so it’s worth a few more looks at least. Fucked Up perform their twelve minute new single ‘Year of the Ox’ with Annie-Claude Deschenes of Duchess Says and a lot of tape wrapped around foreheads. This is proper rock ‘n’ roll. The recorded version features Zola Jesus (really enjoying her Stridulum II album coming up) instead of Annie-Claude and can be heard below. It’s released properly in late September via Matador internationally and Merge in North America.

Posted on August 9th, 2010


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crystalaxis The chart this weeks consists of:

  • A tune from the little-known-about Guards‘ free download EP featuring Cults. Get it here.
  • The drummer in Bon Iver, S. Carey releases an album on JagJaguar called All We Grow. Surprise! it sounds like Bon Iver!
  • The Midnight Juggernauts have released a new album The Crystal Axis through Acephale and they’ve given away a B-side and a remix for the laugh.
  • Previously posted tracks from Abe Vigoda, Windings, Fol Chen, Deerhunter and Tennis.
  • ‘Stranded’, the beautiful new vintage tune from The Walkmen filled with horns… The instruments you sicko.
  • A new song from Zola Jesus from her forthcoming Stridulum II EP. hear her guest on Fucked Up’s 13 minute ‘Year of the Ox’ here.

Chart July 23rd by Nialler9

Posted on July 23rd, 2010


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Alan over at State has been knocking out some quality mixtapes for the last few weeks. Here’s the latest – a ladycentric tracklisting featuring Glasser, Cults, Mountain Man , Henparty, Thomas Tantrum, Tieranniesaur, 2.54, Zola Jesus and more. Just click play.

Check out his chillwave and weekend mixtapes after the jump too.

Posted on June 14th, 2010


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Nika Roza Danilova aka Zola JesusStridulum EP is one of the more interesting things I’ve heard lately. If you dig gothic electro and a suffocating sense of claustrophobia in your music listening habits then, it’s for you. No surprise that she is supporting Fever Ray later in the year then. Interviews here.

Listen to the entire EP after the jump: (more…)

Posted on May 19th, 2010