Shahyad - “Sefaareshi”

Taraneh Enterprises Inc.
2006 (1384)

In recent years Shahyad has been more and more active as a composer/arranger for other artists and he has slowly but surely turned into a creator of something I like to call “just-add-artist” packages! Just like Sadegh Nojooki (whose work has clearly influenced Shahyad’s style) he creates so skilfully such uncomplicated yet anatomically correct and CATCHY songs that are so modular and instant that you can give it to any artist and it will fit her/him as a glove! His brand new album “Sefaareshi”, partly recorded in Turkey, comes in collaboration with Cameron Cartio, Behzad Khalkhali, Mohammad Rezai, Babak Rouzbeh and G. Karagöz. Featuring 10 tracks released on Taraneh Enterprises Inc..

The album is kicked off by the title-track “Sefaareshi”. Now musically is this song and its PROGRESSIVE ARABESQUE with the touch of ROCK ‘n ROLL a la Cartio just phenomenal, its theme however is a bit ambiguous since the use of the word “Sefaareshi” somehow doesn’t connect to the rest of the lyrics and context!? Neither of its (“postal”, recommended, …) meanings! On a funny side not, if you want to turn things more dominant/submissively controversial try changing “Sefaareshi” to “Farmaayeshi” when you sing along to this track and you‘ll see that not only does it roll much smoother but it even makes more sense!*LOL*

“Aakhareshe” doesn’t fall far from the previous track, however there is more of Shahyad’s Persian flavour to it than the opener! I love the surprising Electro-details hidden here and there!

Shahyad has in this album collaborated with the Turkish actor/singer Emrah and the fruit of their venture is the duet “Bi To Hargez”, a song featured even on Emrah’s own album. However I must say that out of the two versions on this album, this one arranged by Shahyad himself is more concise and defined and consequently also stronger in its HIT-potentiality than the rather loosely arranged and produced Karagöz version that was released months ago!

Now to a clever and progressive VOCAL TRANCE/PERSIAN POP hybridisation that is a rather new venture for Shahyad! “Bikhiaali” is a bit too messy and overloaded for its own good, but still a pleasant surprise on the album.

“Boro” is yet another nod to the general orientation of this album towards the Turkish sound of PROGRESSIVE ARABESQUE! A mid-tempo fare with subtle hints to the Mesopotamian musicality. Crisp quality to the arrangement, though a bit too slow in its pace which effects the chorus negatively!

The ballad “Naame” is another specimen of this album’s great arrangements with its marriage of Continental and Eastern instrumentation. The music however is much too BULKY for Shahyad’s fragile voice, which tends to get overpowered by it repeatedly!

First PERSIAN POP tune after a line of ARABESQUE songs, “Khodaa Be Kheir Kone” is a cute SING-ALONG song a la “To Azize Delami” featuring Shahab Tiam in its choir section, it seems!

The CLUB-oriented FUSION “Amoon Bede” with its melange of ARABESQUE, HOUSE, ROCK and POP is one of the more experimental tracks on this album. Reportedly four of the albums tracks have been produced in Turkey and you can clearly hear which songs! Rather impressive!

“Bi To Hargez (Taxim Edition REMIX)” is the version that I mentioned earlier in this review, the song addresses a Turkish audience rather than an Iranian with its certain arrangement. A wise decision by Shahyad to include an own “Irani-Pasand” version on his album!

The second and lighter version of “Naame (Shahyad’s REMIX)” is much more appropriate for Shahyad’s vocal ability and performance as it serves as a devoted companion rather than a suppressor with an own “instrumental-version” ambition!!

I must admit that I’m rather torn when it comes to appreciating and evaluating this album!! On one hand its music is simply AMAZING and RICH in production, Shahyad has truly surpassed himself with an accurate update in sound and details! On the other hand the vocal performance and -setting of the most songs (the Turkey productions in particular) is VAGUE and WEAK and the vocals don’t reach out and interact smoothly with the musical background! This friction creates disturbance in the overall experience of the songs. Just when you are about to be mesmerised by the alluring treats of the music, the unstable vocal comes along and gives you a rude awakening! Something very unfortunate! As a result I’ll give the musical performance on “Sefaareshi” a “+++” while the vocal performance gets a mere “+”, that makes it to an overall of “++”! I’ve said it before and still stand by my argument, Shahyad is a very talented composer and skilled arranger with a rare ear for the commercial potential and appeal in music. And I’m convinced that he’ll have a crucial role in the future internationalisation of our POPular music! The music of this OPUS says it all! His voice however has always been his “Achilles’ heel” and its even more vulnerable in “Sefaareshi”, unfortunately!

On an end note I would like to praise the aesthetic presentation of the album which is both of an International calibre and Persian POP-musically nostalgic (the whole “postal“ concept refers back to the design of Andy & Kouros’ “Goodbye” and Nooshafarin’s “Memories” anthology). AliReza Amirghassemi’s touch of class is distinctively recognisable and tangible, as always!

Artistic Performance: ++
Artistic Ambition: +++
Commercial Potential: ++
Technical Quality: ++
Aesthetic Presentation: +++
Ethical Adherence: +++
[ +++ > --- ]

Review by: Pourya E.

Reviews described herein are mere opinions, and must be construed in that manner only! In other words they are not absolute!