Zoon, the project of Canadian and First Nations musician Daniel Monkman, has shared the latest single, “Help Me Understand,” from his forthcoming debut album, Bleached Wavves, out on June 19 via Paper Bag Records. The Hamilton-based singer/songwriter took his name from the Ojibway word Zoongide’ewin, which translates to “bravery, courage, the Bear Spirit.” Paste recently featured Zoon in our list of Best Acts We Saw at New Colossus Festival 2020.
“Help Me Understand” is premiering at Paste below and follows his previous single “Vibrant Colours.” It’s built around hand drums and exquisite, murmuring guitars, which gently swarm and contain this palpable, all-knowing wisdom. Thick, hypnotic shoegaze may be Monkman’s mode of sonic expression, but there’s a deep appreciation for humanity that underpins his music. Monkman turned to music after his struggles with racism, addiction and poverty, and his songs possess compassion and an ache for connection and greater meaning.
“‘Help Me Understand’ is from a short story/poem I wrote about an unknown First Nations protagonist who lives homeless on Vancouver Island,” Monkman says. “While homeless, they become very ill, while no help is to be found, they accept death and while on their last moments, they’re greeted by the creator who welcomes them into the heart of the sun.”
Listen to “Help Me Understand” below, and preorder Bleached Wavves here.