Syrian/Egyptian singer songwriter and producer Bosaina here offers up two short EP’s stuck together.
In “New York” (in six parts), we get three pop song-length numbers separated by quirky interludes. Opening with balladic piano and keyboard playing and warm emotive chords set into a colder environment of found sounds and processed rainy atmospheres, with a smattering of odd and distant percussive patterns drifting in and out, sets you up for a melancholic or maybe even romantic listen- but when the third part kicks in, we shift into a trip-hop environment, with a heavier breakbeat, and Sneaker Pimps-style distorted vocals. The third substantial part (“June 3rd”) surprises us again, focussing on soft pure-sounding plinky synth sounds that have been glitched and re-triggered into a rather esoteric result. It’s an unusual collection of pieces that has some sonic consistency yet a wide variation in attitude.
The second EP “Two Names Upon The Shore” is equally hard to pin down. “Rivage” is another glitched and heavily effected piano piece, occasionally underpinned by rhythmic pulses. “Untitled” continues in a similar vein but with the spontaneous arrival of more distorted vocals and then harder-edged distortion halfway through. That format, of a purer sound with distortion arriving in the second half, is echoed in an instrumental fashion by final track “Abalone On The Grass”.
It’s an indulgently obtuse bundle of tracks where the sincerity and solemness is gatecrashed unpredictably by angier production touches that appear and disappear without warning. This gives it the distinctive but slightly inaccessible character of a work that can’t make up its mind whether it wants to be understood or not. It’s an interesting challenge.