OMAR SOULEYMAN

 

An unexpected preacher of love.

 

It's a strange world we live in. Who could’ve foreseen that a wedding singer from Ras al Ayn, Syria with over 500 albums under his belt would become a cult hero among club connoisseurs?

 

But there is an undeniable bond between the legacy 50-year-old delves in - a synthesized version of the Levantine dance music Dabke - and so-called acid house. In both cases musicians cultivate undulating synths and effective rhythms, and in both cases it feels like your head is about to explode from the stimuli, while the hips take on their own lives. It is completely irrelevant where you hail from - all it takes is a sensory apparatus.

 

Then it's really no wonder that gurus like Four Tet (who produced his breakthrough album Wenu Wenu), Modeselektor and Gilles Peterson are honored to have worked with a master like Souleyman.

 

When so much of this day and age is in utter chaos, there’s comfort to be found in how the Syrian sings about the great theme of love as the war drum beat rages on carelessly. This is, after all, dance music's virtue: The ability to dissolve us in time and space, building bridges where walls previously were to be found.