Mullah Said

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Much like earlier entrants in the subscription series Sandtrafikar, Mullah concentrates on the softer yet still ominous side of Muslimgauze, coming across as meditative, late-night music which still has an understated edge to it all. The title track sets its mood well, with a synth/string arrangement similar to the dominant one from Veiled Sisters, but darker and more subdued, set against a very low-key drum machine beat and gentle interjections of wind instruments and random vocal bits. The first "Every Grain of Palestinian Sand" ups the tempos slightly, adding more drones and percussion, including a great acoustic performance about halfway in, along with an attractive central string melody. From there the album continues in the same general vein, adding tweaks and changes as it goes. Both versions of "Muslims Die India" are a bit more active, while still maintaining the same generally dreamy and drifting feeling (the second concentrates a bit more on percussion interplay throughout its quarter-hour length); and the second "Every Grain" sneaks in more echo and samples of machines into its quiet though intense groove. "An End" concludes things on an unexpected note, with a female vocalist singing over a combination of bird sounds and percussion breaks -- an attractive way to end a fine record.

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