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Badawi | Soldier of Midian | review | alternative | rock | Lollipop


Soldier of Midian (ROIR)
by Jamie Kiffel

A smattering of drumskins clatter like firecrackers popping hot tension through the night. They get tighter, closer - now, the sounds of gypsy tongues, maybe Moroccan pipe and pillow sellers shouting for coins; maybe the orange-saffron sound colors of a Bedouin rave - and then, low and insistent, the relentlessly seductive twirl of a snake charmer's reed. Now thick, jingling copper finger cymbals - and finally, the deep bassy voice of a hand drum raises the mixture to its full throb. The rhythm fills the air from every direction, peaking at this pitch and refusing to let up.
Badawi is Raz Mesini, a 28-year-old New Yorker born in Jerusalem and classically trained on the rich, syncopated rhythms of Persia, India, Yemen, Morocco, and Africa. As an underground DJ, Mesinai samples his own live work, then loops it, adds the occasional electric bass, and turns it into mind-blowing trance whose third eye is open wide. This is real, classic Middle Eastern noise with every moment of calm removed and its most intoxicating elements hyped up to their highest levels. Meditative music may gently nudge some to enlightenment, but like a cobra's fangs in your vein, this will shoot you straight to the outer realms. The poison is addictive and the bite is sublime.
(PO Box 501 Prince Street Sta. New York, NY 10012)

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