Arabnormal is led by Younes Faltakh, formerly of Belgian alternative rock band The Hickey Underworld, from Antwerp. (The name comes from a song that appears on the album Plays Pretty for Baby, by Washington DC punks Nation of Ulysses).
Belgian music is good, and while you might not have heard of Review Corner favourites Castus, Boy and the Echo Choir and Lionel Solveigh, Gotye is well-known; we once paid an arm and leg to see the Rolling Stones because Belgian rockers Triggerfinger were one of the support acts.
Arabnormal is very good, and any rock fan could do far worse than invest in this new album. Its clever/prog sound is somewhere between near-namesake Yannis Philippakis’ Foals, plus Incubus, a splash of Deftones, some Muse and U2 guitar. It’s an interesting album, with much variation. Scorpio opens with a beefy riff and a Deftones-lite sound. Dominion is slower, more of a Foals sound, with Faltakh’s vocals a little like Bono. We played some Hickey Underworld via a streaming service and it was less varied and subtle. On here, Toy has a pounding beat with an eastern influence, and vocals that yelp, Digital Veil is slow, melodic and almost pop and T9 dark and gothic. Well worth checking out.
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