Impose contributor and International Tapes editor Luke Carrell and his wonderful partner Coco Zoabi, of the blog Coco's OCD, have released a mixtape called the Nablus Project, all based around a single field recording. The track was made by French film-maker Pierre Gauthier as he was traveling through Nablus, which is a Palestinian city on the West Bank. He heard a Muezzin issue a Muslim call to prayer, and due to the shape of the valley where Nablus sits, the call echoed off of the walls of the city and the nearby Mount Gerizim, creating a naturally ethereal and echoey recording. The city of Nablus was founded in the year 72, and all of its tumultuous history can be heard in the depths of this song.
Coco and Luke were enchanted by this piece, given to them by Gauthier when he visited a film set that Coco was working on in Nablus last summer. They decided to create a mixtape, asking a group of artists they knew to make songs that all incorporated this recording. The result is a beautiful group of varied but familiar songs by artists and groups such as Helado Negro, Lee Noble, Arclight, and MEGAFORTRESS. The original recording is about 25 minutes long, so different artists could select different parts to incorporate into their work. It's a really wonderful selection, building on the artist's individual styles to create something incredible.
The curators have not allowed free download of this mixtape, instead asking for a donation for a yet-to-be-chosen charity, probably one that focuses on peace efforts between Israel and Palestine. (The first one they picked turned out to be sketchy, so they are working on finding a new one.) With a good cause that matches the music, this is worth tossing a couple bucks at.