Murur Al-Kiram marks a departure from Ala’, both sonically and musically. Mixing the pastoral and the industrial, the record relies on techno-based percussion beats, nostalgic melodies, intricate double drum interplay and ambient soundscapes, deconstructed and reconstructed time and time again.
The tracks are subtle in their angst as well as their joy, celebrating small victories in face of great defeats and echoing the band’s conflicted mindset towards life in their country and community. The record was recorded over a period of two months, and features Teddy Tawil (aka TEDTEDTED) joining the band as second drummer.
Whereas Ala’ saw Kinematik’s four core musicians confining themselves to one instrument and/or role within the overall sonic construct of the band, these new compositions see each musician playing and equally at ease with several instruments, adding intensity, cohesiveness and a sense of fluidity to the proceedings.
The intent was to make a record that would sound like a single travelling shot, beginning with the musicians’ childhood in their hometown, to their enduring the horrendously corrupt state of political affairs Lebanon finds itself in today, until they are buried back in their place of birth; realizing in the process how slight and remote Lebanon is, as a country; and how little they, as individuals and a community, are.
To some extent, Kinematik have consistently felt like aliens in the midst of Lebanon’s contemporary music scene, and this statement holds true for a large segment of the country’s alternative scene nowadays.
With recent civil rights campaigns, counterfeit elections and dire social conditions, the sense of existential dread has intensified and the question of “what the hell are we doing?” that generally occurs at the time of recording took on a more general dimension, as in is there a purpose for trying to accomplish anything at all in Lebanon today, whether artistic or otherwise? In the end, it was the salutary presence of Sary (the newborn son of synth player Rudy Ghafari) that became the “raison d’être” of the record.
Murur Al-Kiram is the story of an important chapter in the band’s history, one marked by uncertainty and hesitation, yet solid and vibrant in spite of the latter.
1. Murur Al-Kiram
2. Hikayat Atfal
4. Bein Mreytein
5. La Min Shef Wala Min Dere
6. Hayet Bi Kel Nafas
7. Al-Qulub Al-Mughallafa Bet-Turab La Tankaser
8. 'Elbe Msattaha
9. ...W Kaza
10. Muhibbi Al-Kanari
Release Date: 28/02/2020