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Souvenir de Tanger – Souvenir II

Published July, 2014
by Easterndaze

As Muslimgauze’s magnum opus gets re-released and re-listened by a new generation of listeners, and his numerous epigons emerge and disappear, the merging of Oriental tropes in Western electronic music doesn’t seem to cease to interest up-and-coming producers in occidental bedrooms. Many question the earnestness of the ventures of the likes of Vatican Shadow, but this discussion, we rather skip here.

Souvenir de Tanger is a project by a Warsaw-based producer who cut his teeth in various bands and first started experimenting with electronic music in a new wave outfit. How did his current project come about? “The name Souvenir de Tanger came from a postcard that I bought in Morocco, in Tangier. The postcard was kitschy in a camp aesthetic. When I started to make this project I was really interested in the connection between European, the Middle East and Muslim cultures, and this postcard became a symbol for it,” he says.

His raison d’être came with the Arab Spring that shook the world in 2010/2011.  “When I started making music, it was the time of the Arab Spring and the first track on the EP is inspired by the guy who burnt himself in Tunisia, which spawned the whole revolution in the Arab World.“ 

His Souvenir II tape follows in the wake of the first part and is released by the BDTA label on tape. The almost virtual or virtualised images of online and TV broadcasts conveying the happenings in the Middle East processed somewhere in Central Europe, detached but still caring and interested. He doesn’t deny the inspiration by Muslimgauze. To the contrary, he admits a literal borrowing of his method. “He [Muslimgauze] started music because of the political situation in the Middle East, and I was in the same situation. Most of the post-Muslimgauze projects are experimenting with the melodies, but they don’t connect themselves to the political situation in the Middle East.”