Premiere: Khaled Kurbeh & Raman Khalaf Ensemble – Shamal

We’ve known Henrik Schwarz to have an affection for traditional music from all corners of the world, heard in his own remixes and peppered across his live sets and mixes. So it’s a welcome continuation to find the second release on his Between Buttons label hails from Syria, via Berlin.

Aphorisms is a six track debut record from two Syrian musicians, together known as Khaled Kurbeh & Raman Khalaf Ensemble, produced with some of Berlin’s finest and most musically diverse instrumentalists. The album is a heavenly mixture of ambient, jazz and Middle Eastern vernaculars – marrying the worlds of electronic and improvised live playing beautifully.

Today we premiere ’Shamal’, a two-minute jazz excursions groove that mixes double bass and rhythmic percussion with the transcendent desert sound of the Raman’s Oud and Khaled’s jazz piano. Dry hand claps ping pong between djembe drums, encircling around your head before Raman’s call-and-response vocals chime in for the final 30 seconds to elevate this track to something quite spiritual.

Aphorisms is out 3rd November via Between Buttons. Pre-order here.

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