Omar Souleyman & Kill Alters

Join us for Omar Souleyman and Kill Alters at the Pioneer Works Main Hall this September 17.

About the Artists

Following his critically acclaimed, Four Tet-produced studio debut "Wenu Wenu," its follow up "Bahdeni Nami," and 2017 Mad Decent debut "To Syria, With Love, Syrian wedding singer turned global dance icon Omar Souleyman announces his 4th studio album "Shlon" due out November 22nd via Mad Decent / Because Music. Listen to lead single “Layle,” out now and streaming everywhere.

On Shlon (Arabic for “how,” or literally “which color”), Omar Souleyman presents 6 new techno-meets-dabke songs of romance and love to the world — singing poetry of a woman’s lips as sweet as Hillah’s dates on “Layle”; an intriguing woman he watches from afar whose kiss would be worth 10 million other kisses on “Shlon”; a lover ready to offer his beloved anything she wishes under the sun on “Shi Tridin” (“What Do You Wish For?”); a man in admiration of a woman with green eyes and blonde hair on “Abou Zlilif” (“Her Face is Like The Moon”); a song about love that will last forever on “Mawwal”, a traditional — all superimposed on complex techno arrangements by Hasan Alo, and based on the hi-speed Kurdish and Arabic dabke and baladi styles with the exception of “Mawwal” being presented in its traditionally slower pace.

Shlon features double keyboard work from Hasan Alo, a fellow native of the Hasaka region in Northeastern Syria who has recently been active in the vibrant nightlife scene of Dubai. Azad Salih, a young Syrian man currently living in Mardin, Turkey, accompanies on saz, with the lyrics and love poetry written on the spot during the album’s recording session by longtime Omar collaborator Moussa Al Mardood-also currently based in Turkey.

Omar Souleyman, who has collaborated with Björk and Four Tet, began his career as a prolific wedding singer, releasing nearly 500 live albums before civil war broke out in his native Syria in 2011. In 2013 released his debut studio album Wenu Wenu via Ribbon/Domino, which NPR called, "... a jam so visceral, thrilling and intense as to make the mysterious matter of earthly borders seem hardly worth the time to contemplate." His 2015 sophomore album Bahdeni Nami garnered widespread critical praise including The Guardian, who proclaimed, "It's so fast that the only appropriate way to engage with it is to wriggle your limbs. Melodies are both abrasive and ebullient, chattering endlessly like raucous birdsong," and 2017’s To Syria, With Love via Mad Decent placing Omar firmly in the canon of global electronic music.

Souleyman has bolstered his growing status as a world and electronic music icon establishing an extensive international following after touring widely and performing at major festivals including Glastonbury, Bonnaroo, Pitchfork Paris and Roskilde. In 2013, he performed at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert in Norway.

Omar Souleyman has been touring tirelessly since the release of "To Syria, With Love," or in fact for as long as he can remember in the last 10 years. He has crossed the planet — now seeming quite small — several times over and looks forward to meeting his fans everywhere to celebrate the release of Shlon.

NYC based band Kill Alters exist at the intersection of electronics infused rock, digital hardcore, freewheeling mutant noise experimentation, and incidental found sound culled from bandleader and composer Bonnie Baxter’s decades old family recordings. The incorporation of Baxter’s mother’s voice from the tapes in her personal archives serves as a central element in Kill Alters compositions, imbuing their music with added layers of personality and emotional memory and weaving together a story of early childhood nostalgia laced with catharsis and redemption.

Primary composer and producer Bonnie Baxter leads the band with her impassioned vocal performances, pummeled drum machine beats , and peals of chaotic synthesis. I’m addition to Kill Alters, Bonnie Baxter is a member of the duo Prolaps alongside Matthew Stephenson from Machine Girl and has released several albums on Hausu Mountain. Nicos Kennedy serves as the project’s co-producer/mixer & sound engineer. Baxter and Kennedy started the Kill Alters project as an outlet to decontextualize the audio from the archived tapes. The care and the vulnerability with which Kill Alters infuses their music with these archival recordings recasts the trauma and confusion documented within them as a source from which to draw power and achieve a new sense of clarity. Hisham Bharoocha (formerly of seminal of US projects Black Dice and Lightening Bolt and a solo artist under the Soft Circle moniker ) provides his signature battering ram drum performances, which collide with electronic percussion elements to animate the band’s ballistic compositions both on record and in the context of their live shows.

While their music often surges with moments of all consuming textural disfiguration and overlapping beat architectures, Kill Alters encapsulates the sum total of their clamor into songs structures that resemble something like mutated pop and punk music. Baxter’s vocal  performances veer on a dime between sing-song melodies , blistering shouts and tumbling rhythmic cadences with beat sculpture / synthesis funneled into fast - evolving tracks that leap into earworm hooks and unpredictable structural upheavals. As the beating heart of the band , Hisham Bharoocha’s drum work fits between busy snare runs and bruising tom fills , escalating in climactic moments to the level of flesh and blood performances and full on drum and bass workouts.