The German trio Carl Gari and Egyptian musician/poet Abdullah Miniawy previously teamed up on Darraje, a 2016 EP for The Trilogy Tapes. Darraje was a potent record that blended technotronics, darkside trip-hop beats and Miniawy’s ultra-expressive singing style. However, as impressive as Darraje was, their latest collaboration, an extended EP cut for Whities entitled The Act Of Falling From The 8th Floor, goes even deeper.
The Act Of Falling From The 8th Floor is a concept record based around the premise of its title. Miniawy’s Arabic lyrics begin with his first-person narrator flinging himself from the roof of an eight-storey building in Cairo. As he falls he witnesses a number of scenes unfolding on the balconies between the top of the building and the street below. Miniawy recounts these tales with quavering, arresting intensity here.
Carl Gari’s musical accompaniments heighten the feeling of weightless unease. The tempos are generally slow across The Act Of Falling From The 8th Floor - most of the tracks operate at trip-hop/downtempo hip-hop speed - and the record’s languid pacing gives Carl Gari’s compositions a widescreen, cinematic scope. Clanking electronics, eerie synth pads and brooding swells of bass drift across the mix in a manner reminiscent of Prurient or Jabu. When set alongside Miniawy’s vocals we end up with a unique, haunting sound.
Carl Gari and Abdullah Miniawy’s new collaborative effort The Act Of Falling From The 8th Floor is a record of rare power.