I have not always been a fan of devotional music, or rather, maintained the mood for it. My lifestyle called for deep trance or ambient house as a go-to backdrop to my daily mobile tasks. However that all changed when I heard Mel Dobra regal odes to the Universe in that rich and sensual voice, I had to have my fix.
Taking on the potent lyrical frequency that moving beyond the realms of existentialism can provide, her latest album Sacred Tides compels an exploration of relationship with Source, yet remains accessibly rhythmic, flowing and emotive. It’s background music with heart; meditation music with meaning.
Over the course of 45 minutes, I listen to gorgeous tracks unravel in my lounge room as I work, periodically capturing the accents that inspire me. Phrases like “gentle and melodic” and “easy to listen to” materialise on the page.
“It’s devotional music, uplifting and truly transcendent”, it speaks.
This is not just a mentally studious exercise – within five minutes, my work-tense demeanour begins to take on a more ecstatic state. Moment by moment, my soul’s tensions are massaged away by her buttery and soothing singing, rolling out loving phrases and ancient Sanskit chants that have me exhaling ‘woo-hoo’!
When Mel’s lyrics speak of “reaching out to you” or “I bow to you”, this is not some poplet verse of teenage love gone wrong. Oh no, the beauty of devotional music is that it glorifies spirit and creation way above some human construct of romance. It is a doorway to experiencing a relationship with the magic that is our Spirit – via coming to terms with the humanness that is Yourself.
I have known Byron Bay queen Mel for several years and her charisma, essence and stature proves that you can talk of deep matters whilst still retaining an angelic lightness. She has always been earthy, yet exceptionally turned out. Girlish and womanly, raw and polished, innocent and sexy. I have seen her musical journey mature over time, and with the imminent arrival of this solo album, her power as an artist has taken on a whole new realm. Ambient, uplifting and thoroughly modern, Sacred Tides can’t help but make you feel a part of something bigger.
Header image from Vogue Russia’s February 2015 Issue, inspiring the music lover within.