Borne from the rhythm section of stoner-metal trio Sleep, Om has spent nearly 10 years combining drone and sludge with chant cadences and Eastern motifs and philosophy. Advaitic Songs is the duo’s fifth full-length and second with new drummer and coconspirator Emil Amos of Grails, whose work with bassist/singer Al Cisneros has pushed the material to even greater heights.
Though the few heavy moments remain similar in style — with fuzz-bass repetitions and Cisneros’ idiosyncratic delivery — the softer moments are better developed and much more accentuated. Beautiful string passages weave in and out of the music, teaming up with sitar, tabla, and a dose of guest vocals to build some of Om’s best songs. Advaitic Songs is the mark of a duo hitting — and reinventing — its stride.