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La Saboteuse

La  Saboteuse

Multi-instrumentalist Yazz Ahmed turns a corner with a less traditional type of jazz on her new studio album, La Saboteuse. Her British and Bahraini influences bring together a mellifluous jazz infusion, introducing a contemporary and fresh new sound to the genre. Ahmed's sound is unique. Her compositions are rich and sonically beautiful and they slowly unravel into a meaningful story.

La Saboteuse translates as ‘The Saboteur’, an interesting association for such a thoughtful record. Ahmed says it’s centred around the self-doubt she feels when she’s creating, and by personifying the bad it spurs the artist into action. Her inspiring compositions hold a great amount of depth, arguably sounding unlike a lot of jazz. Ahmed shows she’s able to empower listeners with the ability to transport themselves to the Middle East through powerfully expressive playing. ‘Jamil Jamal’ is an example of this with its multi-layered instrumentation, including a prominent trumpet and bass clarinet adding a subtle funkiness to the track, and percussion that creates an ethereal experience.

On the other hand, ‘Bloom’ and ‘Organ Eternal’ take on a cinematic effect, evocative of a more ambient sound, carrying greater sentimental value. The variation of composition on this record is what makes it stand out. The entire aesthetic is symbolic of Ahmed's heritage, from the handcrafted artwork to the resonant trumpet lines, allowing multiple forms of escapism for listeners from across the globe.

Georgia Smith

by Now Then Sheffield