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Six Degrees Series :: Arabian Travels
[six degrees]   review from derek  


Six Degrees hit it big with their previous African Travels, an incredibly layered blend of Afrobeat and electronica, and no different a claim exists while describing the newest in the series, this time journeying through the Middle East. Weaving traditional sounds of Egypt, Algeria, and beyond, with progressive beats by the global underground, the disc is tight from intro to out, a melodic travel through many generations.

Opening with Amir Abdel Magid's kanoun-inspired plaintive song, "Fifth Sun," the beats begin rolling and refuse to stop for a solid hour. The Darbuka drums in Banco De Gaia's "Sakraya," gets the rhythms pumping, as a heady progression begins on track two, finding a major climax on Dzihan & Kamien's "Just You & I," a stunning vocal rendition of which is available on Natacha Atlas's recent Remix collection.

Karsh Kale's "Indus Railway" is breakbeat quick as contributions are offered by Ustad Sultan Khan and Gnawa tribesman Hassan Hakmoun. A remix Ekova's of "Sabura," which adds a hard percussion edge to the original, is a great companion to their collection, and the last track, Euphoria 1001's "Dreams" is a stunningly dream-laden effort, perfectly fitting to end this compilation.

A promising fluidity exists within Arabian Travels, turning each powerful fragment into a conclusive, complete entity, one that will make a great companion to any CD player.



ethnotechno rating: 3.5 out of 5
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  1. JKamtarie :: Fifth Sun
  2. Sakarya :: Banco De Gaia (pick)
  3. Just You And I :: Dzihan & Kamien (pick)
  4. Indus Railway :: Karsh Kale (pick)
  5. Ya Rayah :: Dahmane El Harrachi
  6. Blue Turban :: Arabic Breakbeats
  7. Telephone Arab :: Dissidenten
  8. Sabura :: Ekova (pick)
  9. Sema :: Acid Queen (pick)
  10. 1001 Dreams :: Euphoria (pick)