Nader Meschi- “Shaye-e”
Almost three year ago I wrote in my blog that the Mansour-sound alike Nader Meschi’s second album “Shahye-e” is to be released. A while ago it finally was, after two years of postponing by Ershaad! The album features a relatively rich list of old and new collaborators, such as Pedram Keshtkar, Sirvan Khosravi, Amin Bamshad, Ali Bahreini, Shahab Ramezan, Mehran Khalesi, Mehran Khalili, Anoosh Bahrami, Farshid Vahdat, Babak Rouzbeh, Rouzbeh Bemani, Mahshad Arab and Vahid Meschi. Featuring 13 tracks, released on IranGaam.
The album opens with a typical Mansour-ian chant-along album kick-off. However Pedram Keshtkar has somehow managed to reinvent the whole formula by almost surgically upgrading the sound elements to a more ELECTRO-fied state of BANDARI inspired POP! Even I can’t stop myself from flipping an eyebrow or two to “Sar o Sedaa”!
Next comes the first one of Sirvan’s arrangements and “Mesle Ye Khaatere” features the usual elements that can be found in his TRANCE songs. This is a nice song, however when you have a guy with the vocal ability of Nader’s you expect the chorus to be somewhat …off-taking! Here it “feels” like the man’s wings are cased and he has to suppress his strength in order to fit the flow! Turns out to be a bit anticlimactic.
The title-track, well its first version anyway, opens up reminiscent of the Persian ballads from the 90’s. “Shaaye-e I” tries to tap on a similar ROCK inspired style and sound in Mansour’s early albums, however ends up being uneven and fragmented. Strangely no lyricist has been presented for this track!
Ironically the best TRANCE song of the album is not arranged by Sirvan! But rather someone new by the name of Mehran Khalesi. “Omri Be Paat Neshastam” is a well-made song with a suitable structure for Nader’s voice. One of my favorites from the album.
“Biaa Aashegham Baash” is another song which tries to upgrade the upbeat Mansour-ian styles. While it manages to do so with the elements it doesn’t really get the whole formula working properly!
This mid-tempo track is one of the weaker tracks on the album. The Greco-POP inspired “Roozinaaz” enjoys a rather off-standing chorus! Never heard this girl name before, I must admit. Lovely! Wonder wherefrom the lyricist, who has not been credited, has got it.
A clever touch to put a romantic undertone to a seemingly legal-political theme! “Mantagheye Mamnooe” is another song arranged by Sirvan but doesn’t trespass (pun intended!) its conventional boundaries and reminds of Leila Forouhar’s “Man o To” in its chorus!
Now we’ve come to my favorite track on the album. “Daaram Fekr Mikonam” is a song that blends ROCK with POP and does so with an electronic excellence! A perfect chorus which takes off and lands gracefully. Pedram has delivered similar compositions and arrangements before but this one has perfected the process! I love it.
“Mozaahem” is another song that derives influences from Mansour’s songs but delivers it with fresh elements and pulsating beats.
Next comes a song which tries to capture the mood of Mansour’s “Gharaaremoon Yaadet Nare” while somehow basing it lyrics on that song’s theme! It works fairly well.
“Jodaayi” is strangely the only full-fledged ballad on the album and enjoys a rather classic arrangement. Nice tune.
More ELECTRO treats with a pinch of ROCK! “Panaah” is a song with a retro feeling, evoking the songs from early 90’s.
The album ends with full throttle! “Shaye-e II” is the title-track preformed with all energy left in Nader and the company! Wise way of concluding the collection, leaving you with a feel-good impression.
I was meant to write this review earlier this year, however it was pushed back mainly due to releases that where prioritized. But I really enjoy this album and it has never left my player in these past six months. I like it so much, despite its imperfection, that I felt that it deserved acknowledgments! Nader Meschi was also nominated by yours-truly as the best Iran-based artists of 2008, because of this very album. And like I wrote it sounds current even though at least two years old. In these days where the original is self-righteously regressing and disappointing in every way, it is comforting to see that at least the sound-alike tries to think and head forwards! Like I said this is a far-from-perfect album. The production quality is not even, neither is the consistency of the selected material. However there are gems in there, almost overshining the flaws! Recently we’ve heard Nader collaborating with various underground artists. Chances are that he, just like other legal acts such as Mehdi Moghadam, has gone “impatient” (as Benyamin Bahadori refers to Moghadam) and turned to illegal activities for a faster distribution and subsequently a faster gratification!
Overall Performance: ++
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