Derya Yıldırım & Grup Şimşek first came to the light in 2017 with the release of their first EP, Nem Kaldı, which became an instant favorite with just about everyone. Alternating between groovy psych funk workouts and contemporary takes on traditional Anatolian folk ballads, their tracks became huge at psychedelic dance parties such as Beauty & the Beat as well as with audiences who were lucky to witness their ferocious and uplifting live performances.
The new EP DOST 1 (part 2 is set to drop later on this year) follows on the global psychedelic thread, with references to The Doors (as on the opener ‘The Trip’), west coast US psych, and Anatolian musical heroes like Selda Bagçan. The trans-continental band offers a rich mix of global funk, led by Yıldırım’s hypnotic bağlama (a long-necked lute used in traditional Turkish folk music) and haunting vocal melodies, backed up with cosmic synths galore.
On the poignant ballad Haydar Haydar (featuring lyrics from the Ottoman 17th century poet Kul Nesimi), the lysergic noir atmosphere somewhat reminded me of the beloved Mazzy Star. Truly goosebumps-inducing material, as is the hypnotic and warmly psychedelic Hastane Önü, a track which is bound to be played at the most refined after parties across the globe.
Elsewhere the EP features the infectious cosmic funk of Deniz Dalgasız Olmaz, complete with noodling bass and atmospheric organ chords, and closes in style with a cosmic sunrise on the aptly titled Sunrise. Absolutely splendid.