Tuesday June 18th, 2024
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Egypt’s Irsh Releases Awaited 'Did You Mean: Irsh Vol. 2' VA Album

The Middle East’s experimental scene gathered together in full force on ZULI & Rama’s 'Did You Mean: Irsh Vol. 2' VA Compilation.

Ahmed Khalaf

Egypt’s Irsh Releases Awaited 'Did You Mean: Irsh Vol. 2' VA Album

What started as a video series highlighting the alternative electronic talents from around Cairo, founded by ZULI & Rama, grew to become a group of fatidic experimentalists sharing their passion for unorthodox sonics and unusual productions. Following a very successful debut VA (various artists) compilation, Irsh decided to make it two-for-two with their latest release ‘did you mean: Irsh Vol.2’.

ABADIR, El Kontessa, 3Phaz, ZULI, and Itfll are returning for the second edition, being joined by the debut collab between Yaseen and Dakn, Assyouti, Liliane Chlela, Ashrar, Islam Elnabawi, Seleem El Sadek, and Postdrone. Throughout the 14-tracks, each producer (or pair) offers a genre-bending production which challenges the structural norms of arrangement and sound design.

Qow’s ‘Keteer’ and Seleem’s ‘monster2killed’ provide the ambient outings within the second volume of Irsh’s VA collection. Most of the releases follow a deconstructed methodology with heavy distortion and harsh textures throughout, such with Assyouti’s ‘Null’, 1127’s ‘8918’, Islam Elnabawi’s ‘Mashy’, and 0N4B’s ‘Cybernetic Emptiness’ (a project by ABADIR, Onsy, and Castell Lanko).

While most of the compilation focuses on loose-arrangement compositions, Ismael’s ‘Faster’, Liliane Chlela’s ‘Swordfish’, and Postdrone’s ‘3H3D’ follows a more structural approach while staying true to the experimentation and aggression of the overall project. You can sense the rhythmic direction which encapsulates the individualistic groove each producer offers in their productions. El Kontessa on the other hand offers a chopped, kind-of deconstructed iteration of mahraganat in ‘Aloe Vera’, applying a sea of percussion along the original samples in use, to fire up the rhythm in her project.

Ranging from breaks, deconstructed, jungle, lo-fi, trance, and more, Irsh’s second volume of ‘did you mean: Irsh’ captures the essence of the region’s alternate electronic scene, gathering together an array of talent from across Egypt, Lebanon, and Palestine to offer their individualistic takes of experimental music.