The Inspirational Music Of Muslimgauze (compilation)
'The Inspirational Sounds Of Muslimgauze' will be released on 1.09.2000, available on CD only. This is the second in the 'Inspirational Sounds Of...' collections where we at Universal Egg compile the works of artists we appreciate (the first was Mad Professor). Muslimgauze was the identity adopted by Bryn Jones for his more than 120 releases between 1982 and his untimely death in 1999. One of the most obvious characteristics of his work is the driving force behind it, that is, Israeli atrocities against Palestinians. Most of his music was released on the avant-garde labels Staalplaat and Soleilmoon and we hope to present an authoritative window on his works.
Press release from Universal Egg.
About the Muslimgauze comp.
In 1996 I had been listening to a lot of Muslimgauze via a friendship with the people at Staalplaat. I had been aware of Bryn's work since the 'Cassette Pet' era of the mid 80's yet was amazed at his more recent stuff. I began to include it in my DJ sets and radio shows, particularly the harsher electronic side of his work. That summer we played at the Big Chill festival in Norfolk and through a mutual friend, Quentin from Lost Music of Celtarabia, I met up with Bryn. Although very reserved he spoke of being a big Zion Train fan and that he done countless remixes of our stuff. This caused me ask him if he realised how many people were into his music. He said that it felt like no one was and that he was a little despondent about it. I told him that there was an emerging music fan who was finding his style fitted with the New electronica scene. I mentioned to him that we would definitely put out a selection on Universal Egg and that our base of open minded dub fans would be into it. He liked the idea but said that he would want nothing to do with it, we should choose and package it as an experiment for these new possible fans.
I arranged a selection with Frans de Waard from Staalplaat and we chose the stuff we had been playing out.
After our meeting, Bryn sent several faxes which were much more enthusiastic and positive than he had been on the day we met.
Because we are a small label the project took some time to materialise so sadly Bryn never saw a copy of it. In our typical laid back way we chose a couple of tracks from Soleilmoon releases which they weren't happy with and for which we apologised. The release will not make money but has elicited a wave of positive responses and a new clutch of Muslimgauze fans. Bryn was, for all of Zion Train, an inspirational influence and we miss his music immensely, as well as being affected emotionally by the circumstances of his passing.
We hope that we can introduce many more people to the magical Muslimgauze sounds.
Information from Universal Egg.
The following appeared in The Wire.
Although the work of Bryn 'Muslimgauze' Jones is familiar to readers of this magazine, some people out there still haven't submitted to the experience. They must be persuaded. The Zion Train boys were planning this K-Tel style marketing wheeze with Jones prior to his untimely death and, together with the forthcoming Suns Of Arqa remix album, the audience for his music should continue to expand. Bryn would not object to this grim irony. All sourced from Staalplaat, the music is at once brutal and beautiful, making this a good place to throw the first dice on the Muslimgauze board.
review by Steve Barker
This text originally appeared in The Wire magazine (issue # 201).
Reproduced by permission.
The Wire on-line index.
The following appeared in Vital Weekly.
The birds fly free and the woman's voice calls for the best of. Did he foresee his own death, when writing any of the later pieces? Intrigue is tendered and whither goeth the lowered truck through the streets of Tel Aviv, blastin' these songs? Oh, and typos rock. "Fatah Guerilla" raids
Messmer's tomb and projects all the power that it contains. The boulders roll off the top of the sepulchre, into the sandy pit below. What criteria were used to cull these tracks? There are so many from which to choose...it is unclear.
And yet the majority of re views treat his work as a headstone, rather than a hope.
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The following appeared in Freq E-zine.
Part of the Universal Egg series in which Zion Train showcase some rare and out of print tracks in association with their favourite influential artists, The Inspirational Sound Of Muslimgauze draws on the Staalplaat limited editions Jaal Ab Dullah, Izlamaphobia, Fatah Guerrilla, Mullah Said and Azzazin. And what a selection - "Azzazin II" meshes Industrial clang with ominous analogue filters and some quite disturbing moans; "Shimmer Then Disappear II" has one of the grooviest Muslimgauze beat loops heard in a long time - naturally, taken to the cleaners and wedded to as much bass as the speakers can stand.
This is the pain and pleasure of each Muslimgauze release, especially those compiled from the numerous short-run records which emerged both before and since Bryn Jones' death in January 1999 - each fragment of a whole just drives the craving for more of his (or their as Jones preferred to refer to his "band") relentlessly hypnagogic, (political) consciousness-raising music. The charge often levelled that all Muslimgauze releases sound the same really has been knocked off whatever perch of truth it once possessed, and it seems that the evolution of the sound was proceeding at hypersonic pace in the months before Jones' sad demise.
There's enough of everything on this record to please anyone who's encountered the uniquely percussive range of Muslimgauze's release over two decades, from the tabla and grinding whines of "The Sari Of Cholera" via the cut-up discordant clatter and wheeze of "Hakeem Alkimi" into the minimal slap-back analogue Dub, echoed drum-strikes and enigmatic voices of "Muslims Die India 1". This is a superb compilation, and takes its place easily in the broad ranks of "Best of Muslimgauze" releases as both starting point and place to catch-up for neophytes and enthusiasts alike.
review by Linus Tossio
The following appears on Amazon.com.
It's difficult to navigate through the piles and piles of releases Bryn Jones left behind, and separate the borderline unlistenable repetitive, abrasive work-outs and the gorgeous pieces full of mystique and daring compositional ideas. This collection contains the second kind of Muslimgauze in copious amounts.
Strange electronic meditations on Middle Eastern tuning and rhythm, almost catchy short beat numbers that might fit in a truly adventurous house-set, and that 13 minute long 2nd track... what a monster! It is one of the wickedest tracks EVER - thunderous echoes, half hidden, half revealed beats magically woven in layers of distortion and noise, and a lone flute riding above it all like a sea-gull in a stormy sky, flying over tumultuous waves.... truly breath-taking.
leo (Beijing, China)
see also Your Mines In Kabul, The Inspirational Sounds Of Muslimgauze & Bass Communion vs Muslimgauze EP
February 5, 2017