Cairo-based composer and musician Maurice Louca remains one of the most prolific artists working today. As one of the founding members of Dwarfs of East Agouza, Louca routinely churns out groundbreaking music that hoovers up the DNA of psychedelic rock, avant-jazz and Middle Eastern folk into vast aural maelstroms.
“Trembler” highlights Louca’s other notable project, where he leads the constantly fluctuating Elephantine band, consisting of drummer tandem Tommaso Cappellato & Ozun Usta; Piero Bittolo Bon on alto, Daniel Gahrton on baritone and Isak Hedtjarn on clarinet; Rasmus Svale Kjærgård Lund on tuba; Rosa Brunell on bass; Els Vandeweyer on vibraphone, and of course, Louca himself on guitar/lap steel/synth.
Cappellato and Usta lead the way on “Trembler” with a guttural funk pulse, the foundation for the rest of the band to some dazzling aerobatics from the brass section of Bittolo Bon, Gahrton and Hedtjarn. While it’s definitely the type of song to move to, there’s an ominous undercurrent to “Trembler” as well, as if driving headfirst into a storm and coming out from the other end with a wash of relief.
“Trembler” is the first taste of a new album by Maurice Luca and Elephantine, entitled Moonshine. It’s set to be released September 15th on Sub Rosa (vinyl) and Northern Spy (digital/CD). Preorder the record here. For now, behold “Trembler” below, and find it on streaming outlets.