Watch the premiere of ”Sahargah from Afghan rubab master Nasim Khushnawaz


Nasim Kushnawaz is a master of the Afghan rubab. Residing in exile in Iran, he hails from 4 generations of Afghan, Khorasani and Herati players. ‘Sahargah’ comes from his forthcoming album Songs From The Pearl of Khorasan, which highlights not only his incredible instrument but the interplay and tempo changes with his percussionist. It’s quite incredible. With Afghanistan once more falling to the Taliban, it’s fantastic to have the opportunity to continue to hear Afghan folk and classical music like Nasim’s music.

This is what they have to say about it:
“Sahargah takes influence from a traditional folk piece from Herat. The powerful rhythm emanates the traditions of the Persian empire, using a time signature conventional to classical Herati music. Delicate plucks, unexpected key changes and the ever-elusive tempo drive the music into a complex composition, layered in a way that allows its elements to cut each other apart. Between the deep drums and the intricate picking, a sense of wistfulness and yearning echoes out. Lovers of Khorosani music will notice the melodic use of the quartertone, never found in Afghan music but adopted from Hindustani influences dating back to the first quarter of the last century. The result mixes Rag Bhairavi and Shur modes, endemic to Iranian music.”

Songs From The Pearl of Khorasan will be released via Worlds Within Worlds Records on July 1, 2022. You can find it here.


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Bob is the features editor of Cyclic Defrost. He is also evil. You should not trust the opinions of evil people.