Premiere: Kuwaisiana Debuts New Song “Bara7a” | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Saturday, September 18th, 2021  

Premiere: Kuwaisiana Debuts New Song “Bara7a (براحة)”

New EP Chapter 2 Coming January 15

Nov 25, 2020 Photography by Esther Clowney Kuwaisiana
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Multicultural and multilingual sextet, Kuwaisiana, are releasing their newest single, “Bara7a (براحة),” premiering here with Under the Radar. Kuwaisiana (a portmanteau of Kuwait and Louisiana) take their name from the homes of the diverse musical traditions behind their music, a singular blend of New Orleans jazz, funk, ska, indie rock, and the rhythms of Khaleeji music.

Singer, songwriter, and guitaristp +Aziz emigrated from Kuwait to NYC, then from NYC to New Orleans where he formed Kuwaisiana. As a truly multicultural band, not only do they blur genre boundaries but they cross global boundaries too. Drummer Matthieu hails from France, while trumpeter Dehan Elçin is from Turkey, and bassist Sam Levine, saxophonist Nick Ferreirae, and hand percussionist Patrick Driscoll were born in the US. The band first introduced their unique genre expression to the world with their album Chapter 1 and “Bara7a” is the first single from their follow up EP, Chapter 2, coming January 15.

“Bara7a” follows +Aziz’s experiences as an adolescent in Kuwait, delving into one of the near-universal experiences of teenage years - schoolyard bullies. +Aziz switches easily between Arabic and English as he delivers his coming of age story, capturing his experience with culture clash as his painted nails and black clothing earn him the ire of his classmates and he takes the burgeoning first steps towards flirting with a girl. The song itself is emblematic of the mix of styles the band takes on, taking equally from New Orleans jazz, indie rock, and blues. With each verse the band goes down subtly shifting paths, incorporating jazzy interludes and playful hand percussion and highlighting the talents of each of the sextet. However, the track always returns to the instantly catchy central brass riff and +Aziz’s confident vocals. The result sits in its own lane and defies easy categorization, but is undeniably captivating. Accompanying the track is a colorful video, framing +Aziz’s storytelling in vibrant pastels and striking visual vignettes. It also helpfully provides lyrics to the band’s monolingual listeners.

+Aziz says of the track, “Bara7a means sandlot. This is a song about adolescence and dealing with bullies from different social classes. While most people’s culture shock happens when they travel from one culture to another, I had my first major culture shock when I moved from public school to private school in Kuwait, so I wrote a song about it! It exposed me to different types of Kuwaitis and expats of all sorts.” With “Bara7a” Kuwaisiana has a terrific testament to the imaginative possibilities of their cross-cultural genre-blending. Listen to the song and watch the video below, and be on the watch for the Chapter 2 EP, coming January 15.



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