Omar Souleyman – album review

Omar Souleyman
Wenu Wenu
(RIBBON MUSIC)

Omar Souleyman, master of the high-energy Arab dance music style known as dabke, is said to have over 500 official releases to his name. His legendary wedding performances in Syria have been endlessly taped and bootlegged for almost twenty years, and yet Wenu Wenu is Souleyman’s very first proper studio record. His band’s twenty-first century dabke sound, which merges traditional instrumentation with electronic synthesizers and sequencers, is rendered here with a level of clarity never before heard by audiences outside of the Middle East. Each of the album’s seven tracks rides its own unique but relentless groove, over which Souleyman alternately pleads and howls while the electric saz conjures up hypnotic, intoxicating leads. How fortunate we are to have this accessible entry point into the labyrinthine work of this enigmatic figure. — Sam Benanti

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  1. […] “Omar Souleyman, master of the high-energy Arab dance music style known as dabke, is said to have over 500 official releases to his name. His legendary wedding performances in Syria have been endlessly taped and bootlegged for almost twenty years, and yet Wenu Wenu is Souleyman’s very first proper studio record.” Read the whole review on the LEO Weekly’s website. […]

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