Out Now: Sutras – Dāna (SM044)
Strange Mono is announcing the release of Dāna by DC based solo instrumentalist Sutras. Available September 1st. Proceeds are being donated to Bread For The City a mutual aid organization providing food, clothing, medical care, and legal and social services to reduce the burden of poverty for residents of D.C.
An intense spate of personal turmoil led Tristan Welch to Buddhism. In 2020 and 2021, the veteran musician was navigating a recovery from addiction and going through a painful divorce. He found solace in two things: Buddhist teachings and creating music.
With his new solo project, Sutras, Tristan brings these two interests together, crafting gripping instrumental compositions that ripple with emotional catharsis and bridge the gap between post-rock and ambient. Heavily influenced by the widescreen sensibilities of post-rock staples like Explosions in the Sky, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, and Bowery Electric, the artist aims to create music that brings the peace he’s found to anyone who takes a listen.
The four compositions that comprise Dāna are hypnotic, textured slow-burners that reflect the musician’s deep interest in minimalism and repetition. On standouts like the post-punk-flavored “Rosa Lila Dance” and the Jesu-inspired “Seven Suns,” molten waves of guitar build to stirring climaxes buoyed by heavily treated drums. The most intense number, “Spiritual Bypassing,” shudders and shakes with psychic unease, harnessing the pounding tumult of a trip-hop drum loop.
“I’ve found refuge in the teachings of Buddha and shelter in Bhakti,” Tristan explains. “I feel at peace when art is a gift and nothing more. I’ve created Sutras to help myself and others refrain from the attachment that creates our suffering.”