(I hope that the people that originally made these comments will not be offended by the inclusion of their thoughts.)

Comments from the 4AD mailing list

Not this listy, per se unless you give for the consideration that they produce some quality, intelligent and beautiful music. I would pick up a few of those CDs just to give them a try. They are a rather prolific project, one or two guys from the U.K. who often work with some excellent musicians. They are a political ideology as well as a musical project. They are very pro-Palestine, which has turned some people off to them. Because of the political nature of their releases (liner notes-wise) they are prolific with the release of albums. I read a few years ago in an article that they intend to release anywhere from 2-3 albums a year, and many single or odd tracks here and there.

The best way to describe their sound is Middle Eastern electronic trance, with many "real" instruments of the region, Arabic and Indian percussion. Some of the releases are quite brash and some very subtle and pretty.

My recommendations:

In my collection of CDs I count about 17 albums, but I have a few lent out too. There is also a remix EP simply called "Remixes" that is quite excellent. They even recorded an album that you could get only by sending in a coupon from one of the other albums, and what you got in the mail was a completely unreleased album only on DAT! - Jon (dblplus@pacbell.net)

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I know this is gonna sound idiotic, but I have yet to hear a bum release... I guess its because his releases are usually quite alike, yet not formulaic...in other words, there are no surprises like a radical music re-direction... you know what your gonna get, and if you like that type of anthemic, semi-ambient, mid-eastern industrial, droney, type thing you can't go wrong...off the top of my head I'd recommend: Vote Hezbollah, Gun Aramaic, the aforementioned Iran, and Abu Nidal. I hope everyone on the list recognizes by the titles that Muslimgauze is a controversial artist and that I am by no means condoning or supporting his politics.- Thomas M. Wiebrecht (tweibrecht@juno.com)

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My other favorite Muslimgauze albums are "Citadel" and "Intifaxa". They release many albums on Extreme Records out of Australia and have releases on Touch and Staalplaat. I recently picked up a CD entitled "Remixes", which is simply two or three tracks of their material, I guess remixed. I enjoy their sound and rhythms. "Intifaxa" is about the closest they have come to incorporating Indian music as well. Sitars, tablas, etc...sequenced with soothing waves and chant-like vocals, I think it is a rather soothing work. "Iran" is much more trancey and hypnotic. I would not consider them "thislisty", except in that they produce quality, artistic music that is so rare in the industry.

Muslimgauze do release a ton of material, the point being the message in the politics. They did actually do a one-sided 7" on IPR records, so that is a little closer to home. I just mentioned them on my DID and did not realise it would spark so much interest/queries. If you like Muslimgauze, you might also like some of Psychic Warriors of Gaia, particularly "Maenad" and "Obsidian" both in the subtle trancey vein, with some Mid-East influences thrown in. All PWOG releases are on KK Belgium. - Jon (dblplus@pacbell.net)

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