Hamid Askari - “Coma”

Pooya Music (Iran)
2007 (1386)

The diehard Ali Dayi-fan and Shadmehr sound-alike Hamid Aksari’s debut album was first leaked and distributed illegally under the fake name Ali Reza Fard! The depression that this incident caused made him title the album “Coma” when releasing it. As an ex-member of the less known band MEHREGAN Hamid Askari wrote and prepared the album together with Milad Torabi, Fatemeh Salehi, Danial Rahmat, Mehran Khalesi, Fakhrolsadat Torabipour, Behnam Safavi and Farhad Zare. “Coma” features 9 tracks and in released on Pooya Music.

The album opens as expected very Shadmehr-ian with an NRG fare called “Talaafi”, a catchy song with the “pay-back” twist in its theme!

Next comes the song that started it all, “Ghesmat” an “Aghoosh” knock-off with an intro that is almost embarrassing in emulation!

“Delam Gerefte”, a song with a more rougher Electro-ROCK kick which does a little to separate this song from the rest of the equipage! The length of the song doesn’t really help the case either.

If there is a song on the album that manages to present the non-Shadmehr-ian side of Hamid its “Baroon” with its rhythmic Euro-LATIN POP flavour for the summer.

A Turko-ARABESQUE song in a mellow fashion comes by the name of “Khaatere”. Just like the previous song Hamid insists on semi-TOASTing his way through the song!

Back to the Shadmehr-ianism with a DISCO-FUNK twist added to the NRG style! Needless to say the lyrical theme is also recalled.

And in “Ki Avaz Shode?” the story continues …

“Tane” is another mellow song with the Turko-ARABESQUE/POP twist. A song with borrowed segments from here and there!

The dramatic finale to this rhythmic album features seemingly an unknown guest vocalist (either that or it shifts between Hamid’s Shadmehr voice and his own voice!). All songs on the album are shorter than the average running time but “Baavar” should have been a bit longer in order to develop properly instead of wrapping up so soon!

Needless to say I’m bored to death by sound-alikes and their lack of creativity not to mention innovation. And Hamid Askari is no exception! Regardless of his PRETTY BOY charm and suitable image I’m simply not convinced by his ambition to emulate Shadmehr Aghili in voice and music style to such extreme points. We have sound-alikes who sound alike and technically good, and then we have sound-alikes who might be able to sing technically good but are held back by their sound-alike aspiration! And Hamid Askari’s nasal performance is contrived enough to overshadow the more positive side of the album which is the production quality. Don’t get me wrong, there is little innovation involved in the compositions and arrangements per se, since the guys have taken “one” single Shadmehr song (“Aghoosh”) and twisted and turned it to deliver it in alternate presentations! However the actual production is technically impressive and gives a preview of what Hamid and Milad might actually be capable of if dropping the creatively restricting Shadmehr mask in the future. The guys have already started the work on the follow up which will be recorded and co-produced by Nima Varasteh.

Hamid Askari‘s “Coma” is an album custom-made for mainly two target groups, the fans of Shadmehr Aghili who will enjoy it until the next Shadmehr album arrives and the demographic group of 15-29 years old broken-hearted lovers out there who just need a soundtrack for the post-break up phase that they’re in at the moment!

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!