Iman Shahi - “Eshghe Interneti”

Navaye Rameshe (Iran)
2006 (1384)

Iman Shahi’s sophomore album is finally out after having had troubles with the ministry of culture and guidance over its initial title “Dokhtare Interneti”! Three years later the compromised title “Eshghe Interneti” is chosen and the album featuring 10 tracks created by Iman himself, Dariush Shahryari, Shahin Khosroabadi, Davood Basiri, Shahrouz Shabkhiz, Mahdieh Arab, Ali Fakhari, Melody Arabi and Amir Momeni is out on Navaye Rameshe.

The album kicks-off with the title-track. “Eshghe Interneti” is as its title-suggests a GHERI song based on the online dating and cyber relationships that have become a reality and part of our modern culture! Lately we have been witnessing more and more songs with similar themes and titles from professional and amateur Iranian artists around the globe, this song however was the first to be produced but latest to be released!

“Taraneh” is a POWER POP song a la Shahram Masoumian. Not a bit strange since Shahin Khosroabadi is also the man behind Masoumian’s music! The song is well-crafted and well-produced with a CATCHY and COOL flow lately missing in LA-productions. One of my favourites!

Next comes “To Gofti” which is very similar to all the “Baba To Dige Ki Hasti” songs that came from Iran last year! LA, early 90’s comes to mind production-wise.

Iman wails and complains accompanied by the string and choir section! Does the start of “Aarezoo” reminds you of another song?! Well let me ease your mind that its Siavash Ghomayshi’s timeless HIT “Farangis”!

“Ima-O Eshaare” is another 6/8 song, this time with a late 80’s LA-flavour! One positive feature of this album, especially for me and fellow expatriates, is its reminder and update of the slang vocabulary!

Next comes another one of my favourites! “Tolooe Taaze” is a CONTINENTAL DISCO/HI-NRG fare signed Shahin Khosroabadi. While reviewing Masoumian’s latest offering I admired the wailing back-up vocalist featured and wondered who it was. His presence in this track however indicates that it might very well be Shahin himself!

Now lets go “Kooche be Kooche” and back to the late 80’s again with Iman and his crew. There is an air of Shamaizadeh over this tune!

“Jaaye Khaali” is a Euro-DANCE/CONTINENTAL DISCO song that despite its great start doesn’t mange to keep its consistency throughout! In this song we can detect a few relapses in the outlandish multiple-sound-alike syndrome which filled his previous album! Very peculiar indeed!

Cheb Khaled’s HUGE HIT “Didi” from the early 90’s was already back in 94 covered into Persian by Andy as “Layli”. As it turns out Iman too has decided to make a cover of the same song as “Layli” with the declaration of the music as “Arabic melody“ on the cover! This is a horrible cover and the sloppiest track on the album!

Last in the cue is another slang-based song most likely inspired by Mansour’s “Nazok Narenji” and “Badakhlaagh” in style! Whether you would like to mark this song as politically incorrect or not, I’m sure that “Velesh (Zan Zalil)” will have MANY of our gentlemen relating to its theme! Hehe!

After having reviewed Iman’s debut album two years ago and criticizing it for being a border-line case between OFF-BEAT and commercial, I was contacted by his team who insured me that his next album, which was awaiting permission already back then, would be “on the safe side”! And now, having heard it with my own ears, I admit that it truly is on the safe side! Perhaps not a giant leap towards innovation but still a significant improvement and progress that deserves acknowledgment. One ear-catching improvement is the fact that Iman has stopped singing in different “voices”, well almost! Overall the ACE of this album is its co-composer and arranger Shahin Khosroabadi’s FRESH touch that we will hopefully hear more of in the future. Iman’s third album, tentatively titled “Eshghe Mamnoo”, is currently in cue for a permit!

Artistic Performance: ++
Artistic Ambition: +
Commercial Potential: ++
Technical Quality: ++
Aesthetic Presentation: -
Ethical Adherence: -
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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!