Last year d/j Rupture and a team started the Beyond Digital project as a way of documenting, and collaborating with, Moroccan musicians mixing traditional Berber music with autotune. The latest edition of the FADER includes a piece on their trip. Excerpt below.
These village boys in the big city, would they go back home? Hassan says he would love to, but to make music he has to be in the city. His father, who sings the call to prayer from the neighborhood mosque and is impish with us gawky strangers, won’t hear of profane music. Hassan and his friends are not the first who have gone to the city looking for work but also for more creative license than the cave down by the river—their rehearsal space—provides them.
It’s not just about the music. If you live in the village, you live by village rules. No music and, says Hassan, no romance. Issafn’s electricity generation swoons over Bollywood video-CDs and cultivates a parallel fantasy life of whirlwind passions while families nudge them towards arranged marriages (so much more reliable!). From Casablanca’s clamor you can feel nostalgic for the ways of the village; once you’re actually there, you mostly just feel oppressed by them.