An intriguing new project, Luciole is the result of a creative collaboration between two artists and two friends, Carole Verhaeghe, a singer and author who has collaborated on many projects of polyphonic vocal music, and Hicham Chahidi, a composer and producer who works within the label, Music Screen.
The first threads of an expansive musical universe, Luciole’s debut single arrives in the form of ‘Dumaya’, an avant-garde blend contemporary electronics, shaded underground music, and the traditional sounds of Indie, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East. Best viewed as a complete creation of sounds, colours, and traditions, ‘Dumaya’ infuses contemporary music with age old style, creating what is possibly one of the most diverse song we’ve ever been presented with.
Essentially ‘world trance’, ‘Dumaya’ features an eclectic torrent of sounds, including piano, trombone, trumpet, drums, percussion, synths, and the zurna, all bound together by Carole’s vocals and an underlying electronic groove that fights through the cascade of competing sounds. Amazingly, through the frantic immediacy of the track, a composed and evolving melody forms, stripping away the dizzying trance elements and letting a more authentic vision for the track shine through. It’s a stable, melodic ebb and flow of fuzzy digital beats and Carole’s soulful vocals, backed by the subtle flourishes of brass.
A lavish and almost other-worldly experience, ‘Dumaya’ is both blessed and cursed by It’s ambition. The fusion of old and new, contemporary and traditional, and the calculated digital with the more organic instrumentals makes it an intriguing listen, but an unbalanced one. The verse and refrains where Carole’s vocals shine and are wonderfully textured, but in each chorus the zurna pushes its way to the fore and cuts off all chance of continuing a pleasing or involving melody.
As a complete song, Luciole’s debut single is a wonderfully unique experience, one that is bursting with potential and possibilities, and while ‘Dumaya’ might catch some people off-guard, it certainly sets a precedent for some impressive things to come.
‘Dumaya’ is available now on Spotify, iTunes, and from Music Screen.