The Spirit of Fucked Up Places. The jarring title of this album is totally fitting: the sonic adventures of El Mahdy Jr. are a spooky journey into an experimental soundscape which constantly hovers at the edges of violence and audio-cultural confusion. Born in Algeria, El Mahdy Jr. grew up (and currently resides) in Istanbul, Turkey, where his family relocated to escape the Algerian civil war in the 1990s. According to his label, Boomarm Nation, El Mahdy Jr. began his digital music compositions while bedridden with malaria in Burkina Faso, where he was working as a French-Arabic translator.
On The Spirit of Fucked Up Places, he draws us into his feverish hallucinations. These eight tracks blend together like a series of half-forgotten dreams spread across several nights: slivers of disembodied voices and found sounds echo over glitchy, sporadic beats; sudden uprisings of almost familiar Algerian and Turkish songs and instrumental music are splintered into sonic textures that range from ragged and harsh to lush and ethereal. Whether inspired by current events or not, this album is a very fitting soundtrack to the current socio-political unrest in Turkey, North Africa, and throughout the Arab world. Respect to Boomarm Nation for putting this record out! You can stream the whole record from their Soundcloud right here:
Boomarm Nation is label based in Portland, OR, devoted to experimental Sound System music from around the world.