Sands of Time by Desert Rose is their debut album. The album was signed with the record label Passion Music, London in the year 2000. San song soared on the South African pop charts, reaching no.3 on the top twenty radio hits. The music has been described as an African Enigma or and African Enya. Desert Rose draws from the unique indigenous instruments of Southern Africa, with samples of Mbira, Uhadi, and Jembe just to mention a few. The composition draws loosely from indigenous sounds and cultures around the world, including Hopi Indian chants from the America’s. The inspiration comes from the fact that Indigenous people around the world who have never had any contact with each other, often come up with identical music. The theory is that they live close to the land and tend to reflect the same universal sacred form found in nature in their music. Hence the similarity. Desert Rose draws from these elements found in Indigenous music, for example the Hopi Indian fertility chant found in the track Millennial Child. Although Sands of Time has been compared to Enigma or Enya, the Indigenous sounds woven into Classical orchestration sets the album apart from any other music of its genre, especially when these disparate elements are combined with Gregorian chants and epic orchestral sounds.
The lyrics of Sands of Time are both English and ancient languages, The live samples of very old Chinese Indigenous vocals draw the listener in to an other worldly sound. The samples of vocals taken from the townships of Cape Town, Khayelitsha cut through the dramatic orchestration, punctuating the music with the sounds of Africa. The English lyrics speak of mysteries in the sands and ancient stone engravings of the past, a theme of mystery that runs through the album. The unique and fresh sounds reflect that mystery with the haunting Gregorian chants soaring over the African rhythms and drums. Definitely an African Enigma