Press // The Imaginary Soundscapes // A Way Out By Knowing Smile

THE IMAGINARY SOUNDSCAPES is the electronic version of a meeting between STÉPHANE RIVES, who following his early 2010 solo project, Islets of Memories, uses re-worked samples from his discography, mixed with recordings from his daily life and sound environment, and FRÉDÉRIC NOGRAY, who returns to his early research on feedback, here caused and moderated in real time by three effects pedals, oscillating between minimalism and psychedelia.

A WAY OUT BY KNOWING SMILE is the first recorded collaboration between Rives and Nogray, and is released by the Ruptured label.


Saxophone player Stéphane Rives is best known for his sine wave playing of said instrument, whereas Frédéric Nogray may seem a new name. He plays effect pedals here, whereas Rives limits himself to laptop […] In his laptop Rives [disposes of] samples of his discography, which he reworks in this recording, made in June 2010 in Beirut […] The piece is divided in two parts, both called ‘A Way Out By Knowing Smile’ […] [The music seems to be] generated through improvisation, but it doesn’t actually sound like it. It’s an excellent work of low humming […] sine wave-like sounds, which are cleverly woven together into some highly sensitive, concentrated bits of music […] A fine work, I’d say, with some great intensity and sounding like an improvisation of composed materials, or perhaps a composition of improvised parts […] Great work!
(Franz de Waard in Vital Weekly)


Press // The Ruptured Sessions Vol. 3

The Ruptured Sessions Volume 3 is a CD compilation gathering some of Beirut’s most talented pop, rock and funk musicians, with tracks recorded live in the studios of Radio Lebanon 96.2FM. It was released on June 8, 2011.

This compilation features exclusive tracks by:
Fareeq el Atrash
Intensive Care
Eileen Khatchadourian
Lazzy Lung
Mashrou’ Leila
Sandmoon
White Trees


Press // The Ruptured Sessions Vol. 2

The Ruptured Sessions Volume 2

A CD compilation gathering some of the most notorious protagonists of Beirut’s experimental music scene, captured live in the studios of Radio Lebanon. “The Ruptured Sessions” is a series of live recordings that take place in the studios of Radio Lebanon 96.2FM, during Ziad Nawfal’s weekly Ruptures program. These recordings focus on musicians from Lebanon’s alternative music scenes (alternative folk & rock, electronica, improvisation, etc.), as well as visiting foreign musicians.

Thomas Millroth is a Swedish writer and art critic. Nowadays he runs the Olof Bright label, alongside Swedish reeds player and improviser Mats Gustafsson. Thomas reviewed volume 2 of CD series The Ruptured Sessions for the very fabulous music blog Soundofmusic, on December 1st, 2010. Unfortunately for readers from this part of the world, Thomas’s review is in Swedish. It’s never too late for a trip to Scandinavia, is what we are thinking.



The Ruptured Sessions Volume 1  

“The Ruptured Sessions” is a series of live recordings that take place in the studios of Radio Lebanon 96.2FM, during Ziad Nawfal’s weekly Ruptures program. These recordings focus on musicians from Lebanon’s alternative music scenes (alternative folk & rock, electronica, improvisation, etc.), as well as visiting foreign musicians.

Ziad Nawfal’s eclectic music tastes and his deep knowledge of a wide array of musical genres have made him one of the best DJ’s in town for over 2 decades now, and his name has been tied to the most mythical underground places of post-war Beirut. His radio programs on Beirut’s governmental radio station, Radio Liban, are also a reference for a whole generation of young alternative music lovers. These shows, as well as numerous other professional activities related to music — from working in Beirut’s sole alternative record store, La CD-Theque, to writing reviews for all new releases of Beirut Incognito’s collection, as well as for local and foreign magazines, have led to his extensive involvement with the local music scene. He often acts as a manager, producer, or event organizer for alternative rock, experimental and electronic music artists and bands from the Lebanese scene.

Following in the footsteps of one of his mentors, the BBC’s famed radio host John Peel, Ziad Nawfal presents ‘The Ruptured Sessions, volume 1’: the first CD to be recorded live in the studios of Radio Lebanon, during his ‘Ruptures’ show. The sessions were recorded in the studios of Radio Lebanon over a period of eight months, between June 2008 and February 2009. There was initially no actual intent for the sessions to be released onto CD format, which explains the lo-fi quality of some of the final tracks. Artists came to the studio to present some of their favorite musical selections, with an emphasis on their own artistic output, and were eventually invited to grab their guitar and perform a number of songs, live on the spot.

The best tracks from these impromptu sessions were then carefully selected, mixed and mastered by Tunefork Studio’s (one of Beirut’s most prestigious recording studios, for alternative-minded musicians) master-of-ceremony Fadi Tabbal, in collaboration with Ziad Nawfal. The resulting CD features exclusive music by Nadine Khouri, Charbel Haber (the lead singer from punk-rock band Scrambled Eggs, caught in rare acoustic flight), Youmna Saba, Cristobal (aka Christophe Katrib), and The Incompetents.

(Karma Tohmé)