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DAR DISKU IS AN INDEPENDENT RECORD LABEL AND DJ COLLECTIVE FOUNDED IN 2019 AND BASED BETWEEN THE UK AND BAHRAIN - CHAMPIONING THE SOUNDS OF THE MIDDLE EAST, ASIA AND BEYOND.

BAHRAIN’S DAR DISKU FIRST HIT THE SCENE AS A DJ DUO IN 2018, BUT MAZEN ALMASKATI AND VISH M’S MUSICAL COLLABORATION STRETCHES BACK TO THEIR CHILDHOOD. GROWING UP IN THE SAME NEIGHBOURHOOD, THE PAIR HAVE BEEN FASCINATED BY UNCOVERING, SHARING, AND CELEBRATING CONNECTIONS BETWEEN TRADITIONAL SWANA* MUSIC AND ELECTRONIC SOUNDS SINCE ADOLESCENCE. UNITED BY A LIKE-MINDED CREATIVE SPARK AS TEENAGERS, DIGGING FOR RARITIES AND BURNING MIX CDS FOR FRIENDS AND STRANGERS BECAME A WAY TO DISTRIBUTE THEIR DISCOVERIES. AROUND THE SAME TIME, THEY BEGAN MAKING MUSIC AND PLAYING TOGETHER IN BANDS, DRAWING INSPIRATION FROM WESTERN PROJECTS.

 

ARTHUR RUSSELL, ESG, THE STROKES, AND TALKING HEADS SHAPED DAR DISKU’S FORMATIVE YEARS, ALONGSIDE THE ARABIC RECORDS THEIR PARENTS PLAYED ON DUSTY TURNTABLES. FOLLOWING A MOVE TO THE UK FOR UNIVERSITY, THEIR OBSESSION WITH ELECTRONIC MUSIC GREW, WHICH LED THEM TO DELVE INTO MUSIC FROM APHEX TWIN, KRAFTWERK, BENGA, LARRY HEARD, AND DAFT PUNK. FEELINGS OF NOSTALGIA ALSO BECAME PROMINENT DURING THIS PERIOD. A HEARTFELT LONGING FOR HOME INSPIRED A NEWFOUND PASSION FOR MUSIC FROM THE SWANA DIASPORA. HAVING TRADED BAHRAIN FOR LONDON, AND LOOKING BACK ACROSS THE WATER, THE CULTURE THAT SURROUNDED DAR DISKU THROUGHOUT THEIR ENTIRE LIVES BECAME HYPNOTICALLY FASCINATING. 

 

EAGERNESS TO SHARE SOUNDS FROM THE DUO’S YOUTH INFORMED THEIR DJ SETS, AND LED TO DAR DISKU SHARING STAGES WITH DJS LIKE FOUR TET, NABIHAH IQBAL, AND PALMS TRAX, WHILE PLAYING FESTIVALS AND VENUES AROUND THE WORLD SUCH AS FABRIC, GLASTONBURY, SUB CLUB, AND MAGNETIC FIELDS. LOOKING TO BRING MUSIC FROM THEIR SETS TO WIDER AUDIENCES, DAR DISKU RECORDS WAS FOUNDED IN 2020. THE LABEL HAS BECOME A HOME FOR DANCE FLOOR-READY EDITS OF RARE GEMS ACROSS SUB-GENRES SPANNING KHALIJI HINRG, ARABIDISCO, HABIBI HOUSE, SAWT, AND BOLLYWOOD. 

 

FROM LEARNING ABOUT THE MICROTONAL ARRANGEMENTS IN FARSI MUSIC AND SOUTH INDIAN POLYRHYTHMS, TO THE 1970S PUNK ROCK AND PSYCHEDELIA MOVEMENTS IN EGYPT, LEBANON, AND IRAN, THEY ARE CONSTANTLY THINKING ABOUT WHAT COMES NEXT. DAR DISKU’S DEBUT ALBUM, FORTHCOMING ON SOUNDWAY RECORDS IN SEPTEMBER 2024, REPRESENTS THE LATEST EXTENSION OF THIS MUSICAL JOURNEY. VISH AND MAZEN SOUGHT TO CREATE LIVE AND ORIGINAL INTERPRETATIONS OF SONICS FROM THE COUNTRIES THAT INSPIRE THEM – TRANSFORMING THEIR INFLUENCES INTO SOMETHING NEW.

 

THE ALBUM IS A TRANSPORTIVE PORTAL INTO DAR DISKU’S GROWING WORLD OUTSIDE OF THE DANCE FLOOR – ONE THAT ENCAPSULATES THE COSMIC EMOTIONS OF CINEMA. CHANNELLING SOUNDS FROM EGYPTIAN FOLK, TURKISH PSYCH, ALGERIAN RAI, SUDANESE FUNK, ETHIOPIAN JAZZ, NIGERIAN DISCO, AND BEYOND, DD’S METICULOUS ANALOG APPROACH TO LIVE RECORDINGS ENSURES THAT THE ALBUM REMAINS TRUE TO ITS ROOTS. INCORPORATING YEARS OF LEARNING AND LISTENING TO CREATE AN LP THAT FEELS BOTH TIMELESS AND NEW, DAR DISKU HAVE FOUND A FITTING HOME AT SOUNDWAY RECORDS. 


 

*SWANA: SOUTH-WEST ASIA AND NORTH AFRICA

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