“Niyaz is the closest to organic digitalism imaginable: you never know where the mouse pad ends and the animal skin begins…. devotional by nature, weaving deft poetics about being consumed by divine flames into patient textures of dhol, tholak, darbuka, and synthesizers. When the trio attacks the dancefloor fully with the 110-bpm “Dilruba,” ancient Persia finds a new home in stacks of subwoofers.” – XLR8R
“… [Niyaz is] an alluring combination of medieval Persian and Indian exoticism and beats that are state of the art. Ali’s vocals are wholly evocative of another world and another time, which creates a wonderful tension with Torkian and Rizzo’s inspired instrumental textures.” – Billboard
“[Azam] Ali has become one of the best-loved vocalists on America’s world music scene.” – India West
“Niyaz are an accomplished globe-spanning trio……..Theirs is a beguiling sound featuring traditional instruments, Ali’s spellbinding vocals and a transcendent production. This isn’t fusionist material, there are no contemporary dance beats obscuring the mystery of her voice, and the mystical poetry she sings in Farsi and Urdu, so don’t hesitate to seek this out.” – Toronto Tandem
“… this album is an instant classic.” – San Francisco Chronicle
“… the real highlight of the Cd is the always-gripping voice and passionate phrasing of Ali” – Los Angeles Times
“Niyaz has its musical hierarchy: Ali’s silky voice glides and soars across the top; intricate and mostly traditional instrumentation holds the center; and electronics are the foundation. ” – Washington Post
“The debut from Niyaz unveils something of a Persian fusion supergroup… This isn’t the kind of music that fades into the background — instead, it transforms the space around it, working a powerful, mystical magic” – Barnes and Noble.com
“Between the drum-and-voice duo Vas and her solo outing, singer Azam Ali has long since cemented her rep. Her latest project sees her tackling a series of Sufi poems with the aid of exceptional multi-instrumentalist Loga Ramin Torkian and two-time Grammy nominee Carmen Rizzo. The trick that makes their millennial medievalism work is that the electronics are used simply to bolster and flesh out the sound, rather than forcing a sense of modernity.” – Montreal Mirror
“… the success of Niyaz is immanent. The simple reason is they’ve already accomplished what so few do, transcending the boundaries of traditional styles in completing something entirely unto themselves.” – Global Rhythm magazine
“… [a] stirring, darkly beautiful release… that seamlessly blends hypnotic trance grooves, acoustic and electronic percussion, frame drums, keyboards, hammered dulcimer, zils, darbuka and a variety of Eastern instruments.” – Pasadena Weekly
“The Niyaz vibe is an alluring combination of medieval Persian and Indian exoticism and beats that are state of the art.” – PVV
Listen to the Day to Day interview on NPR.
Niyaz makes the top 10 list on Global Rhythm.