Hamlet Minassian's solo masterpiece is a testament to the Middle East's forgotten dance music culture. Recorded in westernized Iran immediately before the 1979 revolution, which lead to the near-criminalization of most Western-derived elements of culture. The young Armenian musician was born in 1940 in the city of Tabriz in Northwest Iran. After graduating from music school he attended the Tehran Conservatorie, followed by stints researching pop music in the US and Europe. He began his career with composing Chanson style songs based off the timelessly in vogue style of French pop music. This six track, 44 minute LP is a hybrid of Euro disco and traditional Armenian music, the synthesized elements mixed with eclectic percussion make this sound like early house music. “Alas-alas” is over 12 mibutes of murmuring bassline and eerie falsetto vocals with Moroder-esque synthesizer arpeggios. “On The Days” is chirpy percussion and scatted vocals with brass accents and percussion-heavy passages. “Al Elnim” begins with synthetic-sounding sequences that expand into guitar flicker, cleanly recorded drums, and endless layers of vocal vamps. Highly recommended.
- black vinyl pressing
- first widely available vinyl edition of rare 1979 private press LP
- limited edition
- music label: Numero Group 2019
reviewed by FOOZOOL 12/2019