At this point, it's no secret that Paris-based Lebanese producer, Hadi Zeidan, is very influenced by the disco and belly-dancing music of 70’s and 80’s Lebanon, as we’ve discussed with him on this very same platform a while back. It's something that is very evident in his new, upcoming album, Taksim Analog - a 7-track LP that's set to be released on both digital and vinyl in late November.
What’s interesting about this project is the methodology behind how Zeidan composes the tracks. All the tracks are one-take recordings composed using purely analog gear like the Roland-808 and 707 besides a host of analog synths like the Roland Juno, Yamaha YC30, Korg Minilogue and Monologue.
Each track is inspired by a record and even symbolises a genre or musical time period from Hadi’s collection. The first track , 'Setrak,' is a tribute to Lebanese/Armenian tabla master Setrak Sarkissian who released some of the seminal belly-dancing music in the 60’s and 70’s. In this track, Hadi recreated a belly dance routine using his 808 drum machine with a synth solo layered on top, giving it an electronic twist without too much derivation from traditional belly-dancing parameters.
The second track, 'Georgette', is Zeidan’s tribute to Georgette Sayegh’s 'Ya Nassini'. Hadi composed the track as a sort-of downtempo, instrumental rendition of the song, maintaining elements of the original’s instantly recognisable organ solo while completely reimagining everything else, from percussion to melodies, turning it into a serious electronic piece.
This first glimpse of the album definitely has us wanting more, as this project shaping up to be something outstanding in both concept and implementation. It’s always enthralling to see regional artists choose an entirely different direction to global trends and carve their own path with their own uncompromising vision and way of executing ideas.