One of my favorite musicians, Badawi, is performing tonight at Club Love as part of the Dub War NYC series. Badawi is the nom de plume (assuming one can write in sound) of the Israeli-born musician Raz Mesinai, who has lived and worked in New York City since the 1980s, first making his mark as part of the illbient duo Sub Dub. Badawi is a name used for the avant-dub releases that began with the phenomenal 1996 release Bedouin Sound Clash for ROIR Records. (The music released by the unrelated band who adopted this album title as their name is, decidedly, an unfortunate coincidence.) Since then, he has continued to release on ROIR and Asphodel, as well as one LP for theAgriculture as Ladyman--though his music has become less obviously influenced by dub reggae than by Middle Eastern rhythms and contemporary electronics. Fans of John Zorn's Tzadik label may be more familiar with the musician through releases under his real name, generally a platform for more obviously avant-garde composed works like the wonderful Cyborg Acoustics (2004). His last album as Badawi, Unit of Resistance (ROIR, 2007), was initially recorded in 2004 as anti-war protest music and later remixed via the internet by a handful of exceptional producers, including Mesinai's wife, Marina Rosenfeld, and Trinidadian MC/vocalist Juakali, also performing tonight at Dub War. His compositions have been performed by The Kronos Quartet and Maya Beiser, but he is still comfortable playing a bill with dub legend Scientist. Other projects include a Sumerian opera and a forthcoming graphic novel. Badawi's unique mix of ancient and modern sounds, hard dub rhythms and political sentiment probably stem from his youth, hanging out with Bedouins in the Sinai desert and involving himself with radical Jewish sects under the guidance of the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Truly one of the most innovative yet least appreciated artists of the last 20 years.
Some MP3s from Mesinai's website (no particularly good YouTube videos, sorry folks):Dubwar Podcast: Badawi - The Index showcase Prt. 1
Here are some formal specs on tonight's show:
DUB WAR NYC SPECIAL
with Sensational + Spectre
+ Joe Nice, Dave Q, Juakali, Incyde
Doors 10pm / 21+ event
$10 advance tickets
$10 before midnight, $15 after
Dub War closes out an amazing year of future bass music by returning to our New York roots.
At the heart of the mighty Wordsound label, producer/DJ/label owner SPECTRE crafted some of the dankest, darkest, strangest hip hop rhythms ever produced during the Brooklyn label's mid-90s heyday. These tunes proved to be the perfect vehicle for the one-of-a-kind verbal weirdness of MC SENSATIONAL. Formerly part of the Jungle Brothers, Sensational veered toward ever weirder and more experimental flows.
And BADAWI, another New Yorker who helped paved the way for the current underground bass movement, makes his return to Dub War this month.