Mawwal | Black Flies

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United States - Mass. - Western

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World: World Fusion World: Middle East Contemporary Moods: Mood: Intellectual
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Black Flies

by Mawwal

World fusion with middle eastern influence.
Genre: World: World Fusion
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Tara Torna
6:22 $0.99
2. Pyar Ka Diya
6:37 $0.99
3. Jackals' Wedding
4:41 $0.99
4. Yurodivy
5:24 $0.99
5. Black Flies
5:41 $0.99
6. Ae Jane Man
5:20 $0.99
7. Haq Ali
6:39 $0.99
8. Ya Gamar
4:42 $0.99
9. Big Machine
6:43 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Jim Matus, guitarist/composer of the critically acclaimed band PARANOISE, has created a new band, MAWWAL. This is a further refinement of Matus’ unique world fusion style. MAWWAL is long established and highly acclaimed on the New England club and festival circuit. MAWWAL performs both original music and arrangements of traditional Middle Eastern music in a spirited and beautiful trance-inducing ensemble. Inventive vocal arrangements in English and Arabic weave through the laouto (Greek lute) and violin, augmented by traditional percussion (tabla, dumbek, frame drum, riq) in what has been called a "new genre" by Progression Magazine.

Throughout the Middle East "Mawwal" is a form of popular music that often criticizes society and is performed through improvisation. ================

Featured prominently on bass is Percy Jones (Brand X, Brian Eno, David Sylvian, Tunnels). The record also contains two previously unreleased songs, featuring legendary Qawwali singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan (tracks 2 and 6).

"We were given permission to use these tracks by the lawyer for Nusrat's estate. I isolated the vocal and wrote totally new music around his voice, creating an original and smooth blend of the Mawwal band and the beautiful voice of this great master."
(Jim Matus)

"For fans of Peter Gabriel’s brand of world music, Mawwal should be the next step, as this is the most advanced fusion of Middle Eastern and western progressive music we’ve heard."

“If you have any familiarity at all with Peter Gabriel's explorations into the music of other cultures, MAWWAL is what that could've evolved into, pushed further by a quantum leap. "Black Flies" is at once experimental & passionate. Traditional pieces from Libya, Syria & Yemen are explored and then blown wide open with amazing arrangements by Jim that allow western perspectives to swim & mingle in such an intense yet flowing way. The results are spectacular. I'd urge anyone reading this page to check out MAWWAL (as well as Jim Matus' other band PARANOISE). This CD has captivated me in one evening and it might just snare you too!” -(Ray Dorsey/Chaos realm)

"Inspired by musicians like Peter Gabriel, Karsh Kale, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, and Hamza el Din, Mawwal takes world music in an entirely new direction.”
(Sheryl Hunter, critic, The Recorder, Greenfield, MA)



to write a review

Aaron M. Brown

If the Grammys meant anything...
Jim Matus would win one for this album!

Fans of Paranoise, and those whose interest is piqued by the above descriptions, should buy Black Flies immediately.

The essential elements of Paranoise are intact here: the fearless disregard for musical borders, the serpentine guitar solos, the general blend of virtuosity and edge. The mood leans more toward the contemplative rather than the confrontational, but the overall intensity is not diminished.

In my opinion, this is a more holistic work than the previous Paranoise albums, much as I like them. The vocals are more tasteful, more seamlessly integrated...nothing threatens the flow.

Highly recommended!

Joseph R. Gorneault Jr.

Mawwal:Black Flies
I have been following this band for 20 years.
Every new release is a great new experience.
This is by far their past.

Roland Kreuscher

Convincing establishment of a self created style!
Well, comparisons to both CDs from Paranoise that happily can be found here on CDbaby are inevitable. (And therefore 4 stars might be enough.) The first results of that comparison are: more of the same (more or less), but(!)also more of the same quality! Perhaps a little more rock-song oriented. And the integrated world/folk-samples sound even more like really having been played by "brigades of folk/world(?!)-musicians" while recording the takes for 'Black Flies'. Perhaps not quite that adventurous anymore. But then everything sounds so routined (in the best sense; yet), ... masters at work, showing how to play this(!) style ... Then, fretless-bass-ikon Percy Jones, yes it's really him ... as if he always had played in this context, fabulous (but not dominant!). Now, read Tamara's review below (better skip Joseph's) and listen to the samples. If you like them: exspect the complete takes on the CD to be better. But, music on Paranoise's "Ishq" is even a little better than that. So, take 'em both ...

Tamara at CD Baby

From tracks bordering on dark progressive rock, almost nodding to King Crimson to fully fleshed-out world pop in the vein of Peter Gabriel to guitar-rich Afropop-informed sonic worlds like that of Youssou N’Dour, to pieces crafted around pre-recorded vocals of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Mawwal blends epic world rock from multiple traditions, honoring the both the separate and collective identities of them all. Taking songs and styles from Libya, Pakistan, Syria, Uzbekistan, West Africa, Yemen and Bulgaria, their sound is thick and abundant, often stormy and always impassioned and intense. Black Flies is truly a hearty feast for the ears, and instrumentally, about as generous as one can get. Including full chorus, tabla, guitars, bass, marimba, lauoto, ethnic percussion as well as drum set, bansuri flute, violin, and endless combinations and textures of all of these, Mawwal embodies the epitome of world fusion while still winning the hearts of any purist with their treatment of culture and tradition from East to West.