New releases from UAE-based artists Alexis, Saffron

Dubai-based teenage singer-songwriter Saffron. (Supplied)
Updated 11 February 2019
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New releases from UAE-based artists Alexis, Saffron

  • Here are the new releases from UAE-based music artists
  • Alexia and Saffron are both under Universal MENA deals

DUBAI: R&B singer-songwriter and producer Alexis has released her sophomore album “This Is Me…” on Universal Music MENA — her first record for the label and almost a decade on from the release of her debut album, 2010’s “Speak Love Life Lessons,” which was released by EMI, and which spawned an album of remixes — “Speak Loud” — in 2014.
Alexis told Arab News that she comes from a family with “roots in North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula” and that she remembers growing up with the music of Umm Kulthum playing in the house. She found herself drawn to female vocalists.
“There was something about powerful women and the effect of song that really resonated with me, and it stuck with me,” she said.
Her mainly self-produced album (“Love Will…” is a collaboration with Grammy-winning producers Carvin & Ivan) is, according to the label, “a suite of material that gives an unambiguous and candid view into her life,” imbuing “her signature R&B vocals across Middle Eastern rhythms, trap beats, bluegrass banjos and symphonic string arrangements.”

“This Is Me…” was released last Friday, and Alexis said she has already received feedback from people in the US, Africa, the Middle East, Spain, the Far East, and Russia. Audience response is one of the things she most appreciates about her music career, she explained.
“It’s a communion that is like nothing else. I love that something that comes from just a dream or a thought can affect people that I don’t know from such diverse backgrounds. That still amazes me. And I don’t think I will ever become jaded about it,” she said. “That’s powerful.”
Another Universal MENA artist, Dubai-based teenage singer-songwriter Saffron (Collins) recently released her latest single, “I Liked You.” Musically, Saffron told Arab News, the track was inspired by Colombian-American artist Kali Uchis’ “Dead To Me,” particularly that song’s “catchy drum and bass line.”
As for the lyrics, she expained: “The song delves into the reality of rejection and how having a crush can make you feel so good and so awful at the same time.”
Both “This Is Me…” and “I Liked You” are out now on all major digital music platforms.


Archaeologists discover Incan tomb in Peru

Updated 16 February 2019
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Archaeologists discover Incan tomb in Peru

  • The discovery was made on the Mata Indio dig site in the northern Lambayeque region
  • Despite evidence of looting, archaeologists recovered items including vases

LIMA: Peruvian archaeologists discovered an Incan tomb in the north of the country where an elite member of the pre-Columbian empire was buried, one of the investigators announced Friday.
The discovery was made on the Mata Indio dig site in the northern Lambayeque region, archaeologist Luis Chero told state news agency Andina.
Archaeologists believe the tomb belonged to a noble Inca based on the presence of “spondylus,” a type of sea shell always present in the graves of important figures from the Incan period, which lasted from the 12th to the 16th centuries.
The tomb had been broken into multiple times, possibly in search of treasure. But despite evidence of looting, archaeologists recovered items including vases.
The tomb also had unique architecture including hollows for the placement of idols.
Chero said the findings “demonstrate the majesty and importance of this site,” located 1,000 kilometers north of the capital Lima, and 2,000 kilometers from Cusco — capital of the Inca empire which stretched from southern Colombia to central Chile.