‘I have never heard an album quite like it’ – review of @docjazzmusic’s album INTIFADA

Musical Intifada | 04 May 2013 16:59 | By Dr. Tariq Shadid aka Doc Jazz

Cover shot of the album INTIFADA

Cover shot of the album INTIFADA

Album review by Kevin Kearney – I bought this album through curiosity as a friend recommended it to me. I am a musician/producer and don’t buy too much music online as I hear it all day every day. I was however really surprised with Intifada, it’s a real gem. There is so much music available today but few albums has such a great selection of styles from funk, rock, and jazz and all with an ethnic twist. I thought it to give Intifada a full review as it deserves it!

As the song title suggests, the message is about the freedom of Palestine and the lyrics follow suit. Doc Jazz has a talent of singing in a very western style yet with a pungent Middle Eastern message. This in itself is quite unique and rather refreshing, to find such a rare combination of styles. Tracks like ‘Intifada‘ remind me of late 80’s funk, slick beats and big backing vocals cleverly arranged in a semi rap style lead vocal.

Right of Return‘ flows deeply and quietly in a jazzy lounge style, again well sung, and with a great keyboard arrangement. Very easy listening and easy going, sung sweetly against a deep message of someone wanting to return home.

We Resist‘ is another slick encounter with ethnic instruments and excellent backing vocals. It surprises you when the chorus begins with a group of backing vocalists introducing the shibbabeh, the Palestinian flute, a very weird but wonderful marriage of styles from East and West.

Kevin Kearney of 'Karma Bonita'

Kevin Kearney of ‘Karma Bonita’

Healing Hands‘ is one of my personal favorites. A very Santanaesque arrangement with a great vocal line. It has a very samba, rock feel to it, with a wicked chorus. The name Doc Jazz implies that he is some type of doctor, which he is, and this song is I’m sure his swan song! A great track with a humble message.Kevin Kearney of ‘Karma Bonita’

Freedom Flotilla‘, a jazzy, laid back song. Rather funky in the chorus, great bass line, extremely well played and arranged. Non offensive but heart -warming with a catchy hook in the chorus.

Free Jerusalem‘ is another 80’s jazz style track with sweetly sung backing vocals and a very distinctive chord arrangement. A real ‘sing along’ type of track.

Home (for Jenin)‘ is a beautifully sung ballad. Shuffling percussion and Fender Rhodes lounge style. This is a touching track that has a beautiful chorus and melody. Very laid back indeed.

The Wall Must Fall‘ is another favorite of mine, it’s so laid back you just want to curl up on the sofa and listen to what Doc Jazz has to say. Wonderful arrangements, cleverly produced with melancholic feel to it, a lovely track!

Justice Leads the Way‘: we get funky here with a big chorus, backing vocals and nice jazz/rock guitar lines. The message here is one we are all familiar with but I have never personally heard anything quite like this. How Doc blends his lyrics and musical styles is an intriguing introduction to how many of his compatriots surely feel. This is all sung with a lot of emotion and carried with a lounge feel, a jazz/lounge blend and well thought out regarding the arrangements and production.

Wake Up‘ is funky with a great string arrangement and rapped verses that lead into a chorus hook that sticks in your head and won’t go away! Another great meeting of two cultures with the strings giving it a very Eastern feel but with a very Western beat!

Doc Jazz

Doc Jazz

Falasteen (al 3alam)‘ is an Arabic sung ballad song. A deep chorus line with deep vocals. I couldn’t understand the lyrics but the feeling was clear. A rather intimate track with good arrangements both musically and vocally.

Undhor!‘ : here the East/West mix is very clear! A wonderful balance of ethnic instruments. Very jazzy with a funky beat, all brought together with an excellent string section. Jazz lovers beware! The arrangements are absolutely amazing!

To sum up, Intifada is a great album. The message is clear, Doc Jazz is without doubt the Musical Intifada for Palestine. A wonderful blend of styles, great production and arrangements. I have never heard an album quite like it! A must-buy for music and cultural enthusiasts, but most of all, the music shines throughout this album. Totally recommended!

Written by Kevin Brian Kearney


United Kingdom



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