On first listen, it seems like it would be easy to pinpoint the origins of Zoroastafari’s debut album, Inity. The Winnipeg project’s deep roots reggae vibes and dub experiments appear to point directly to Jamaica, but the project’s true inspirations are far more international.

Inity – a collaboration between dub/electronic outfit Hypernashion, drum & bass MC Pucona, and Polish producers Julian Burger and JPL Retro Style – draws as much from progressive rock and Poland’s reggae-inspired post-punk scene as it does from classic roots. The result blends island flavour with an Eastern European soul – a combination with an uplifting lyrical focus on oneness and spiritual unity.

The name of the project also reflects those values. By combining the names of two prophets, Zoroaster and Ras Tafari, the group focuses on spiritual beliefs that have influenced – or were influenced by – most of the world’s major religious movements. The name manifests the continuity of faith and spirituality across international borders and systems of belief.

“We’ve created a record with a very traditional and timeless sound using modern means and technology,” said Hypernashion frontman Arthur “Arturo” Winogrodzki. “Despite working from different places around the world, and being influenced by different cultures and genres, we still spoke in a language that we all understood.”

Originally conceived as collaborations on individual songs, the Zoroastafari project has been developed slowly over a number of years, with a wide variety of musicians across Canada and elsewhere making their contributions to the whole. Much of the work, including the album’s unique visual design, was completed as far back as 2014, but the finished product is finally seeing the light of day.

Samuel Thompson, Witchpolice Radio podcast

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