There’s nothing in the Middle East quite like Egypt’s Kafr El-Dauwar Records and the collective continue to push the boundaries of shaabi with their latest release from Ibrahim X.
The rag-tag group that is Egypt’s Kafr El-Dauwar Records (KDR) are on a run - they have been since they first emerged on the scene in 2019. An unlikely but seemingly never-ending goldmine of a new type of rap and shaabi, the crew of producers, singers, MCs and creatives have been steadily releasing unique record after unique record, the latest of which comes via Ibrahim X’s ‘Ya Zmintnely’.
As the first taste of upcoming album, El-Shaweesh, the single sees Ibrahim X (who has been spending a lot of time in Paris recently) go full-on Nabatshi, which can best be compared to sprechgesang, an expressionist vocal technique that flows between singing and speaking. It works perfectly for the VII-produced track, which comes as a restless, anthemic neo-shaabi croon that uses Islam Chipsy-like electronic flutes with reckless abandon.Standing as one of the most unique sources of original music across the Middle East, KDR - named after their sleepy, industrial hometown - can be credited with injecting new life into the shaabi and mahraganat scenes, which have, in recent times, settled at a plateau. What comes next from the crew is yet to be seen, but this is very much a case of expecting the unexpected. Don't believe us? Buckle up and check out SceneNoise's special documentary with KDR below.