December 4, 2021

Latest Breaking Music News | MusicApp1

Music News, Artists, Reviews & Trends

Muqata’a: Kamil Manqus كَامِل مَنْقوص Album Review


The Palestinian DJ Muqata’a’s alias has various translations: “boycott,” “interference,” “disruption.” He also uses his music as a form of political and cultural disruption. As a former member of the collective Ramallah Underground, Muqata’a has been fiercely critical of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank. In his solo productions, Muqata’a has found a more artful form of protest, adapting sampling as a way of pushing back against the erasure of Palestinian culture. Muqata’a told The Guardian, “When your heritage is being attacked by the state, you have to find ways of being remembered.” In his productions, sampling becomes a political act of preservation; he takes snippets of classical Arabic music and local field recordings and renders them small but purposeful interruptions.

Where Muqata’a’s previous albums, particularly 2018’s Inkanakuntu, tended toward more traditional hip-hop and trip-hop, Kamil Manqus كَامِل مَنْقوص, his fifth studio album, leans closer to experimental noise. “Kamil Manqus” translates as “whole imperfect” or “perfect imperfect.” The idea of the glitch is central to the album. Shouts on the street become twisted so that it’s unclear whether they’re expressions of pleasure or pain; snatches of an ascending scale emerge through eerie feedback, like a radio that can’t quite find the right frequency. Referencing his patchworked sampling style, Muqata’a has said, “When our land is being taken away, our culture is muted. So it’s a way to try and disrupt that—being a glitch in the system is very important.” To extend Legacy Russell’s theory of glitch feminism, the glitch in Muqata’a’s productions becomes a powerful means of resisting oppressive narratives that have been imposed upon Palestine.

The glitches on Kamil Manqus كَامِل مَنْقوص vary from the mechanical bleeps of musical hardware to manipulations of short sung samples; every time a glitch appears, the melodic elements shift and change, making the essence of each track difficult to hold onto. “Shay’an Fa Shay’an شَیئاً فشَیئاً” is twitchy and nervous; its central motif morphs rhythmically as it’s interrupted by shouts and spoken fragments. The clicking, compressed beat of “Ma Wara’ مَا وَراء” comes clattering through looped samples before a cavernous bass pushes to the fore, like an old man snoring himself awake to resume a half-forgotten conversation. The album hovers unsteadily between anxiety and defiance, balancing the desire to flee and to fight. It holds discomfort at its core, seeking to explore that unease rather than resolve it.

This discomfort extends to the album’s rhythmic inconsistencies; the moments where a discernible beat pattern breaks through are few and far between. The woozy “Bilharf Alwahad بالحَرف الواحَد” is given new shape several times, swaying between a clattering jungle and drunken techno. A careening breakbeat spins past on “Dirasat ’Ulya دِراسات عُلیا,” excitedly offering a tentative structure to the feedback and fuzz before snatching it away again at a moment’s notice. “Tanqeeb تَنقیب” opens on a nervous clicking of hi-hats before breaking into a fuzzy, forcefully rocking rhythm. This constant rhythmic shifting is deliberately destabilizing, and it’s from this agitation that the album derives so much of its intrigue. Kamil Manqus كَامِل مَنْقوص suggests that disquiet can be a productive power, a revolutionary force—at the very least, a strategy so as not to be forgotten.


Catch up every Saturday with 10 of our best-reviewed albums of the week. Sign up for the 10 to Hear newsletter here.



Source link

Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap