Roshi Ft. Pars Radio, “Aziz Joon”

Sjimon Gompers

Roshi and (photos by Brian David Stevens)

Roshi Nasehi and Pars Radio, real name Graham Dowdall, give a new take on a traditional Iranian standard in their premiere of “Aziz Joon”. Based on the original from Amir Rassaei, Roshi sings a lullaby song of melancholy as Pars works from a minimalist dub rhythm palette. Awakening a discovered rhymic modernity through a new prosodic delivery, the evolved percussion and synthesized update carefully applies effects to bring the song's affections to new audiences. Rassaei's music has enjoyed a recent slate of discovery, as Bat For Lashes' Natasha Khan along with TOY recently took on Amir's “The Bride” for a Speedy Wunderground 7″ to accompany the compilation, Zendooni: Funk, Psychedelia and Pop from the Iranian Pre-Revolution Generation. Roshi Feat. Pars Radio take the conversation even further on their upcoming album GEO Records album, Oosh Badaam Ber Goz / 3 Almonds And A Walnut.

Pars Radio sends electric signals phasing all around while paying strict attention to every clasp of percussion. Between the echoing pan of metal drum and rhythmic samples, Roshi's voice brings the reverb's run away sounds together with sung Persian verses and the occasional quick beat accentuations of “ah ah”. The Iranian style of balladry is met with Welsh futurism, as Roshi retains a delicate, dedicated, earnest Farsi delivery accompanied and imbricated by Graham's production. The story remains vintage but the track's voyage feels brand new; as both artists' contributions illustrate the mixed emotions and motifs of departures and doting through scales and sonic reconfigurations.

Roshi explained to us how both her and Pars Radio took on a classic and developed a new take on “Aziz Joon” for all ears from East to West.

“Aziz Joon' is a traditional Iranian song which Graham and I reworked to include driving bass, beats, atmospheres and layered vocals. Both my parents are Iranian so I grew up hearing Iranian folk and pop music but having grown up in the Wales, Western pop, British jazz and latterly British folk and contemporary classical music were also big influences. It is wonderful to collaborate with Graham who is such an intuitive and creative musician and who responds without baggage in a natural way to the music. Like other folk songs this one has a social commentary and is about a person leaving their village probably to go to war. They are saying goodbye to a mother figure and remembering their true love. The sentiment is sad but the song has this underlying rhythmic energy and we used this to create a propulsive bass driven vibe. For us it's about taking what's intrinsic in the original but allowing other aspects of our musical personalities and experiences to come through and I think that was very much the approach for our version of 'Aziz Joon.”

Roshi Ft. Pars Radio's album Oosh Badaam Ber Goz will be available July 8 on the UK imprint, GEO Records.

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