Arabica vol 2
Released only a few months after Vol.1, this new installment goes above and beyond my expectations of Bar De Lune's Arabica potential. Most compilations, especially those handed out in copious amounts over such a short of time, fail in comparison to those who bide for a year or two. Suprisignly enough Bar De Lune creates another classic Arabtronica compilation. 'Suprisignly' because Bar De Lune has been a hit or miss label since the get go. This is mainly because of their other well packaged, overpriced, watered down ethnic electronica releases. Personally, I would never recommend or even buy something from them without hearing it first. With Arabica Vol.2, sporting several sub-genres' to make anyone happy, you have my fullblown recommendation.
This new auditory download has an impressive all-star line-up with soft-spoken classics revealing innovative and grounded beats which you otherwise might not have. Well-known artists such as Natacha Atlas (remixed BY TJ Rehmi), Jah Wobble, Rachid Taha, Dj Krush, and other excellent producers (Momo, Radar, Declan Flynn [alpha X], Digital Bled), really push this smoking spliff to a very high state of sublime semblance. The late and great Sufi master Hazrat Inayat Khan said that music is the highest form of spiritual practice. With Arabica Vol.2 we have found a teacher for the Arabic beat junkies.
The opening begins with the Jah Wobble's "Hayati," an eloquent and chilling dub journey joined by Transglobal founders Count Dubbula and Neil Sparks. It opens with an expansive moving string arrangement and strong Arabic female vocals from Shahin Badar (who also wrote the song). Both add a cryptic sensuality to the mix. DJ Krush's remix of Hamid Baroudi's "Trance Dance" is colored with his usual sleek style. Hip-hop beats, acoustic guitar, smooth vocals, and an impressive and quite unknown contribution to a stellar album. Another unknown and as far as I can tell first release is Steve McCarthy. This for me is the highlight of the album. It is a dance floor pumper and since it's release it has been a regular in my DJ sets. Stylized strings like something in a Missy Elliot cut, Darbouka & bells, pumping bass line and grinding distortion-.YUMMY.
There are so many gems here I would be redundant and out of breath if I broke down every song I enjoy on this album. All I can say is-if you don't have it, get it.
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