Canada artist Mohamed Assani nestles us into a symphony of genre-crossing odyssey in new upcoming record Wayfinder, which will be out this Friday, April 24th. According to contemporary Polynesians, Wayfinders literally man ‘astronauts of our ancestors’ and Mohamed uses a dexterous combination enriching genres to model such galactic journey into seven pieces. Stream the preview below:
The beginner “Awakening” is a kaleidoscopic journey that highlights Indian/Pakistani traditional roots while also using modern synthesizers to yield a psychedelic effect. In “Black Sugar,” Mohamed toys with twinkling chords and slo-mo thumping flow to build a melodic buoyancy filled with a pinch of suspense. The following, “Serendipity,” has a quirky, celestial flair to it as the melody totters between mesmeric hooks and glistening ambience. The dreamiest moment of the album is found in the next track, “Lullaby for Gulli,” a soothing downtempo where the finger-snapping rhythm and fluid strings invites us into a moody cadence.
“Khusro’s Footsteps” feels like the soundtrack of a sunrise scene in a film taking place in the Middle East. It has a perfect balance between drill and flow, where the smooth fusion of cosmic synths and classical percussions capture the motions of nature. Mohamed moves into a more electronic territory in “Darbari Dub,” where the dub-like production is soaked with hypnotic waves of funk and acoustic chords. The final piece “Transit” is a quick affair of breakneck beats and indistinguishable vocals that yield a playful euphony. “Transit” feels like it highlights the chaos we often feel when we face change and the way we replay those memories 5x the normal speed in our heads. Wayfinder is a record that is built on traditional instruments alongside contemporary electronic sounds that showcases Mohamed’s ability to craft a new classical.
Mohamed studied Western Classical and World music at Dartington College of Arts in the UK. Known for his works in traditional Hindustani music, he has performed around the globe with various orchestras and artists. His performances include to the Governor General of Canada, Dubai’s royal family, and more. He is currently based in Vancouver where he continues to songsmith.
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