Global .Wav

Global .Wav, presented by Fatima Al Qadiri, showcases attention-worthy music videos from around the world.

Global .Wav

Global .Wav | Pixie Pose

Estonia, 2007?

As I searched for this week’s installment, I decided to go for a more random country, one that didn’t strike me as a primary magnet for world music lovers.

And that’s when I came across this confounding video for Raske loobuda, a song by the convivial Estonian duo, Pixie Twins. Confounding because it’s intensely comedic, while being entirely devoid of the later intention or any sense of self-awareness.
Basically, if a Hallmark card could be turned into an earnest music video, this is it. The art direction is an unabashed catalogue of near-shockingly generic poses and gestures. The mid 90’s Ann Taylor Loft styling, sedate fake-fur collars and choppy hair set against autumnal forest and northern beach are bewildering, because they so virulently embody the height of banality.

The song itself, which sounds like a cover of something I’d rather not be familiar with,might as well be white noise. The video inhabits a strange location, where blithe spirits toss autumn leaves at each other–one visited by bad Hollywood rom coms, advertising agencies, postcard makers, high street clothing catalogs from the past five decades, etc. This magnum opus of mawkishness reads like a spoof. But it goes far beyond that… Raske loobuda is a perky Video 101 presentation for a set of insipid, commercial stereotypes. And therein lies our corny beauty.

Pixie Twins take the scattering of pink rose petals into a picture-perfect river, in contempo-casual attire, very seriously.
And so should you.

Global .Wav | Soggy Doggy

Tanzania, 2007 Soggy Doggy (AKA Chief Rumanyka) has to be one of the best MC names out there. The fact that he’s rapping over what clearly sounds like Grime in Tanzania is totally badass. The intro for this video features Soggy dangling a silver cross chain, behind him a beach full of people wearing white clothes, swaying to a Grimey beat. We then see Soggy, a man of small stature, practically drowning (in a good… [read more »]

Global .Wav | Slavs and Tartlets

Bulgaria, 2011 Where do I begin? If you haven’t already heard of Azis, Bulgaria’s uber pop tranny extravaganza, then let me clue you in. Aside from being named one of Bulgaria’s top ten celebrities, he possesses a large body of unreservedly homo-erotic, singularly-styled music videos. The video for the song Nyama Nakade (“No Way”) is just one other-worldly work in a buffet of heavenly gems dripping from Azis’s perfectly trimmed, blonde beard. The scenario in… [read more »]

Global .Wav | East African Eros

Tanzania, 2008? The video for the song “Ni Soo” by Tanzanian heartthrob, Pasha, is brimming with saturated, earth tone sensuality. But before we delve into the visual aspects of the video, let’s reflect on Swahili, the language of this song and the lingua franca of East Africa. Swahili has always held a mythical, slightly dreamy status in my mind, its name adapted from the Arabic word sawahil, meaning “coastal.” It’s widely spoken in the aforementioned… [read more »]

Global .Wav | Trance Tween Queen

Iran, 2006? DJ Negar is a tween trance act from Iran, a trusted source of hyper-melancholic music. In this first video, we find Negar decked out in a faux Formula-1 Racing outfit, complete with red baseball cap, in a TV studio recording. Her weepy facial expressions and praying/pleading hand gestures amidst a glistening sheen background visual is bewildering and begs me to ask, how did they reach this styling conclusion? The name of the song… [read more »]

Afghanistan, 2007? This incredible song, whose title remains mysterious, by the duo of Feroz & Naznin, allows the viewer to look into a demonized country’s entertainment. Afghani music remains largely unexplored by outsiders, and to a certain extent, is seen as existing in a medieval vacuum of classicist, folkloric genres. This video, and many others, challenge that cliched notion. The use of auto-tune for vocals, which although rampant across the globe, is refreshing in this… [read more »]

Kazakhstan, 1999? The video for “Legko,” the only song I could locate by Kazakh boy band Bubliki, is a perfect example of a cheesy late 90s Europop Techno track. But it’s way more than that. The band is comprised of ethnic Kazakhs and Caucasian guys singing in Russian, the second language of many a former Soviet state. This Eurasian situation makes it way hotter, obviously, and reflects the geographical position of a transcontinental nation that… [read more »]

Iran (via California), 1997 The 90s band Silhouettt -with three T’s- known as Sepideh in Farsi, consisting of three women, was supposedly the first all-female Iranian band. The name of this song, Korshid Khanom (Lady Sun) from their album, aptly-titled, “Water, Fire & Earth,” conjures up a Witches of Eastwick sensibility, however with Zoroastrian directions instead of New England Satanism. Regardless, it’s pretty amazing how much the movie influenced this particular video. Although the film… [read more »]

Bobby Brown had a sweeping effect upon young men in the Middle East during the late ’80s and early ’90s. I remember the boys in Kuwait desperately trying to copy his style to impress the girls, who were all naturally Bobby-obsessed. One Turkish guy went all the way to emulate not merely the style but also the singing of our New Jack god: Ahmet. Wrapped in a black tee; full-length, opened pin-striped shirt (with a… [read more »]

Mongolia, 2010 – A brief preface: Mongolian contains many borrowed words from Russian, Farsi, Arabic and Chinese among many languages. It is also sometimes written in Cyrillic, making it exceptionally cool and really hard to pin down. “Sanaa Tavi” is a song from a super-hot Mongolian rapper by the easygoing name of Gee. Let’s just say he’ll send a few panda aficionados into a quiver (you know who you are). This track has all the… [read more »]