A couple of days prior to the release of their first recorded collaboration, “Kachf el Mahjoub / Unveiling the Hidden“, Lebanese artists EL RASS (Mazen el Sayed, words & vocals), and MUNMA (Jawad Nawfal, beats & electronic treatments), were the guest of Ruptures, for a presentation of the album and no less than three live performances. They were accompanied by Belgian electronic musician C-Drik, who spoke about the process of mastering the album.
El Rass & Munma *3
El Rass & Munma LIVE *Nou7
El Rass & Munma LIVE *Rissala
Boom Bip & Dose One
El Rass & Munma LIVE
[Photos by Tanya Traboulsi]
The CD Launch & Live Premiere of
KACHF EL MAHJOUB [UNVEILING THE HIDDEN]
A musical collaboration between
EL RASS (Mazen el Sayed, words & vocals)
& MUNMA (Jawad Nawfal, beats & electronics)
ABOUT THE CD
“Kachf el Mahjoub / Unveiling the hidden” is a musical collaboration between Lebanese poet and musician Mazen el Sayed, otherwise known as El Rass (The Head), and Lebanese electronica artist Jawad Nawfal aka Munma. El Sayed is a prolific writer and musician, at ease with a variety of instruments, while Nawfal has previously released an impressive number of albums and EPs, exploring downtempo electronica and ambient dubstep. The collision of harsh beats and brazen, slammed vocals works wonders on Unveiling the Hidden, a truly outstanding collaboration between Nawfal’s Munma project and Mazen el Sayed’s El Rass persona, produced and released by independent Lebanese label Ruptured.
Notorious for his masterful flow in the classical Arabic language, quite an uncommon phenomenon in Lebanon’s exuberant rap scene, El Rass is impressive on Unveiling the Hidden, with lyrics tackling both social and political sensitive subjects. Munma, on the other hand, creates a sound-world perfectly fitting El Rass’s agitated discourse, alternating between broken beats, elaborate percussion, and ambient layers of synths. At times reminiscent of mutant hiphop outfit Shabazz Palaces, at others of the collaboration between dubstep producer Kode9 and vocalist The SpaceApe, this album is an uncanny meeting of Arabic hip-hop and electronica, and represents an exceptional event in the realm of contemporary Lebanese alternative music.
In September 2011, I had the good fortune of traveling to Rome for work. I had the even better fortune at staying at my friends’ Mike Cooper and Maria Galante’s house (more like a cavern of Ali Baba, actually)… Mike arranged for us to appear on an Italian radio program called BATTITI [Beats]. A lovely fellow by the name of Pino Saulo interviewed the two of us for an hour or so, and I played music from both the Ruptured catalogue and other Lebanese labels that I’m fond of (Al Maslakh, Annihaya, Johnny Kafta’s Kids Menu, etc.).
MUNMA: Bits and Dust, from “Previews & Premises” – Ruptured #002
TAREK ATOUI: Un-drum #3, from “The Ruptured Sessions #2” – Ruptured #003
JOSEPH GHOSN: Drone 1, from “Je Veux Voir (OST)” – Incognito
SCRAMBLED EGGS: See You In Beirut, from “Peace Is Overrated But War Misunderstood” – Ruptured #004
MASHROU’ LEILA: Imbibillilah, from “The Ruptured Sessions #3” – Ruptured #005
EILEEN KHATCHADOURIAN: Sari siroun yar, from “The Ruptured Sessions #3” – Ruptured #005
MIKE COOPER: If I Get Lucky, from “Radio Paradise” – Johnny Kafta’s Kids Menu #003
SHARIF SEHNAOUI: Trane, from “Old and New Acoustics” – Al Maslakh #011
YOUMNA SABA: Tehfi, from “The Ruptured Sessions #1” – Ruptured #001
THE INCOMPETENTS: Urinal Blues, from “The Ruptured Sessions #1” – Ruptured #001
RAED YASSIN: All About Siham, from “The New Album” – Annihaya #001
RUPTURED presents TASHWEESH Live in Beirut
Basel Abbas, Ruanne Abou-Rahme and boikutt from Palestinian audio-visual collective Tashweesh will be performing in Beirut for the 1st time, on two separate dates:
Wednesday 28 September 2011
BEIRUT ART CENTER
Jisr el Wati, off Corniche an Nahr
Wednesday 5 October 2011
Saifi Urban Gardens,
Gemmayzeh, Pasteur street
Featuring additional live acts
Jad ATOUI (Lb)
Tashweesh is an audio-visual performance group from Ramallah, Palestine, which brings together installation artists Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme and musician boikutt, in a joint performance that combines sound, music and image. The result is an exploration of the collision between sound and video field recordings, archive material, vocals, breaks and soundscapes.
Performing in Beirut for the first time, Tashweesh will present a premiere of their most recent set, following 2010’s performances in venues such as CCA (Glasgow), SouthBank Centre (London), Danish Film Institute (Copenhagen), Images Festival (Copenhagen) and Re:View (Katowice).
“Tashweesh is the latest ‘voice’ to emerge from Palestine, representing a new generation of artists who are not only cutting edge but blurring the edges between artists disciplines, social action and geographical boundaries” – Aaron Cezar, Director of the Delfina Foundation, London