After years of cutting tracks during weddings, Omar Souleyman is finally ready to release his first-ever studio album, Wenu Wenu, this fall. Produced by Four Tet mastermind Kieran Hebden, the Syrian artist and keyboardist Rizan Sa'id recorded their brand of dabke, a traditional Arab folk dance performed at weddings and other celebrations, in Brooklyn. Prior to that, most of Souleyman's material was tracked on cassettes during weddings, given to the married couple as a present, then released later.
“Rizan performs on keyboards, I sing, and Kieran mixes," told SPIN about working with Hebden, who leaked one of the songs during a DJ set. "I was not familiar with his work before, but I was told he is very good. Right now, I can’t say. After the cassette comes out, I can listen to it and then judge.”
Souleyman's fans (who include Björk and Damon Albarn) can judge for themselves on October 22, when the album is released by Ribbon Music. It'll be available digitally, on CD, vinyl, and, of course, cassette. Check out the album trailer and tour dates below.
August 2 Stockholm, SE - Stockholm Music and Arts Festival
August 24 Katowice, PL - Nowa Musyka Festival
August 25 Los Angeles, CA - FYF Festival
August 29 Austin, TX - Red 7
August 31 Brooklyn, NY - Issue Project Room
November 1 Reykjavik, IS - Iceland Airwaves
November 2 Paris, FR - Pitchfork Festival Paris
December 1 Tokyo, JP - Hostess Club Weekender