THE ROUNDUP: Regional pop-culture highlights for January

Gurumiran. (Supplied)
Updated 28 January 2019

THE ROUNDUP: Regional pop-culture highlights for January

Dubai: The regions pop culture highlights for the month of January 2019.

“Bathe You (Live)”
Gurumiran
Filmed live at The Juke studios in Kuwait, this video captures Lebanese singer-songwriter and guitar virtuoso Miran Gurunian (aka Gurumiran) at his energetic best. There’s a newfound power and confidence to his idiosyncratic vocals that — coupled with his sparse but striking guitar lines over synth arpeggios — make this twisted love song a repeater.

“Time, Money”
BLUFRANK + Lav
The stuttering video cobbled together from an old documentary about Egypt by Noha Amin goes brilliantly with the stuttering experimental art-pop of this Egyptian group led by Ragy Ahmed, whose vocals, here, are pushed through a speech synthesizer. The effect of this collaboration with Lav (Egyptian artist Hannah El-Manawhly) is unsettling and dreamlike. And intriguing.

“Carte Blanche”
Karkhana with Nadah El-Shazly
Side B of the latest album from Unrock’s “Saraswati” series features Egyptian vocalist El-Shazly collaborating with an improv-based Middle Eastern/Mediterranean ensemble of acclaimed musicians including Maurice Louca and Sam Shalabi. The astonishing and unique soundscape that results is, the label suggests, “Far Eastern post-industrial.”

 


Bob Dylan drops first original music in nearly a decade

Updated 27 March 2020

Bob Dylan drops first original music in nearly a decade

  • The song is packed with artist name-drops and pop culture references, including to The Beatles, Charlie Parker, the Eagles, Stevie Nicks and the Woodstock festival
  • It’s the folk singer’s first original song since his 2012 album “Tempest,” though he has released a number of cover albums in the interim

NEW YORK: Bob Dylan surprised fans overnight into Friday by releasing his first original music in eight years, a 17-minute ballad about the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
Backed by delicate piano, strings and muted drums, “Murder Most Foul” retells the shooting of the US president while describing the evolution of 1960s counterculture.
“This is an unreleased song we recorded a while back that you might find interesting. Stay safe, stay observant, and may God be with you,” Dylan posted on his website, along with a portrait of Kennedy, who was slain in 1963 while riding in a motorcade through Dallas.
The song is packed with artist name-drops and pop culture references, including to The Beatles, Charlie Parker, the Eagles, Stevie Nicks and the Woodstock festival.
“Shot down like a dog in broad daylight / Was a matter of timing and the timing was right / You got unpaid debts; we’ve come to collect / We’re gonna kill you with hatred; without any respect,” Dylan recounts in his signature sandpaper vocals.
It’s the folk singer’s first original song since his 2012 album “Tempest,” though he has released a number of cover albums in the interim.
“Murder Most Foul” is also the first song Dylan has penned and released since he reluctantly accepted the 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature, the first songwriter awarded the honor.
At 78, Dylan has maintained a relentless touring schedule, though he was forced to cancel a string of April dates in Japan over the coronavirus pandemic.
The artist is still set to kick off a North American tour in June.