Idin - “Guess”

Avang Music Co.
2006 (1385)

Idin Shafi-Nia is back with his second album entitled “Guess”. An album in an elaborate collaboration with Kamran Delan as lyricist/composer and Roma Kanyan, who was basically introduced to the Iranian market via Idin’s “Voice” two years ago, as the main arranger! Other contributors are Giorgos Alkaios, Farzin Farhadi, Mahin Abadani, Pooria, Rene Dupre, Bahareh Shafi-Nia and Ali Payami. “Guess” features 11 tracks and is released like its predecessor on Avang Music Co.. The CHIC cover art/design of the album is ranked by yours-truly as the BEST of 2006 (check my blog for the complete list)!

The album opens with one of the best songs of the year! The title-track “Hads Bezan” is simply perfect, in both creation and production! It has got Kamran Delan’s signature all over its balanced blend of POP and ROCK. Its traditional, yet innovative (those who have started experimenting with the recommended HIT-formula on my blog should analyse this specimen carefully)! This is when artistic value meets commercial appeal, the reason why I have been a huge KD fan for the past 10 years! BRAVO!!

“Yeki Nist” is a clever hybrid of PROGRESSIVE ARABESQUE and REGGAETON! An outstanding arrangement by Roma Kanyan whose name has always stood for progression! Hopefully we’ll hear an elaboration on this particular fusion in near future.

Another sign of progression, though for another artist, comes with “Yadam Toro Faramoosh”! Farzin Farhadi had for too long stepped in the same NEW AGE/SMOOTH JAZZ path of his and this beautiful CLUB fare comes as a new turn in his artistic career! Well done!!

Next comes another highlight of the album, a ballad called “Taghdir“! Let me tell you that’s its no longer everyday a ballad of such calibre is crafted! A ballad with a catchy chorus and character! A ballad that is not a flat filler somewhere on the album but stands out as one of the collection’s strongest features! A ballad signed Kamran Delan!

Now back to Farzin’s Neo-MYSTICAL style though this time underpinned with a crisp and progressive JUNGLE inspired beat! A tension-building beat reminiscent of the good old DURAN DURAN’s “Rio”! “Koocheye Eshgh” further enriches the variety presented on the album.

“Baavaret Nemishe” is created by a certain Pooria as presented on the album, and hearing the song and its references to the musical style of Mehrshad’s album one cant help but to guess (gives a whole new meaning to the title eh?!) that its Pooria Niakan that is the responsible here. And just like his previous pieces of the FOLCTRONICA (Electro-FOLK) style this one hit’s the bull’s eye with its dance-friendly flow! A song for those who enjoyed “Cheshmaat” on Idin’s debut!

Though Idin was born and bred outside Iran he delivers his homage to the land of his ancestors with an incredible passion and presence! High Goosebumps-factor on this beautiful ballad called “Iran“! Excellent effort by Kamran Delan!

When I first saw the track-listing of the album the title of the current song came across to me as “Queerer”!*LOL* Which made me raise an eyebrow and admiration for the possible honesty presented! However looking a bit closer the real title “Querer” started to reveal itself and cause something of a disappointment!*LOL* Just kiddin’! Anyway, this is a classic style that apparently holds a sway over Idin’s heart since he has created and presented it on both albums! This is a non-commercial and fully artistic ambition that makes Idin a promising artist for possible future “musicals”, in Persian but of the BROADWAY kind!

Time now for the remixes on the album, all conducted by the Sweden-based Ali Payami, whose work we also heard on Arash’s album. First in line is a REMIX of “Unsure”, this version has already become an online HIT!

Followed up by a TRANCE REMIX of “Why Am I So Sad”, which just like the previous song was originally featured on Idin’s debut album!

And to put an end to the remixes and the album comes a progressive REMIX of one of this album’s HITS, namely “Hads Bezan”. I salute Idin’s decision to wisely hand over the task of remixing to someone who is a wiz of the biz!

To be honest, after that the star-dust had settled over the debut album and stopped dazzling us Idin’s a bit over-the-top SIGNATURE-wailing began to strike one as a bit pretentious and became too much to digest, but I’m glad that he has toned it down and balanced it out pleasantly on “Guess”. “Guess” is not a MASTERPIECE, but its not far from it either! Its an album that barely made its release date this year but makes up for a year of poor LA-releases with its admirable level of ambition and performance. The young Idin put himself on the STAR-map two years ago with an ambitious “Sedaa” and today, an older and relatively seasoned artist proves himself more than just a supernova, worthy of the status through further refinement and exploration! His sophomore album is an album wisely thought-through and skilfully produced head-to-toe. Kamran Delan and Roma Kanyan have both come through with flying colours, helping to earn the album a mark of HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! …So having said that, guess how I’m gonna rate “Guess”!?

Reminder: Don’t forget to check out my new blog, a complement to the reviews!

Overall 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!