H.A.T. (United States/Morocco)
Those who look very carefully – and are nit-pickers who enjoy unravelling the names of exotic instruments originating from musical cultures that are different from their own – at one of the pictures that discloses (almost) immediately what his H.A.T.’s music – real name: Hatim Belyamani, the Moroccan DJ, musician, and producer based in the United States – will find that it contains an oud (Arab lute), two guimbris (the acoustic bass of gnawa music from the South of Morocco), an Indian sitar, a balafon from Western Africa, a m’bira (the lamellophone that is transversal to several Sub-Saharan African countries and is also know as kissange, kalimba, etc.), two djembés and their cousin darabuka, a dhol (an emblematic drum of Indo-Pakistani bhangra)… but also a small cheap mixing desk and a very modern P.A.D. – the device that saves and shoots looping samples – and that he calls El-Macina and that in his shows is used both to shoot musical samples and the images that illustrate them.
We are therefore in a territory of unabashed discovery of local music, root music, where H.A.T. comes from – and in this case, Morocco – but also a trip through other exterior genres: the music of Western Africa (so close, in spite of the hundreds of kilometres of sand that you have to cross, geographically and historically), but it is also the music of the East (of other Arab countries and India and Pakistan), or more recently of Brazil – and the question remains, jokingly (obviously): Where in that photograph can we see the berimbau, the cavaquinho, or the cuíca? They are not there, but their sounds are. Of course they are! We can find their mixture and presentation with the help of machines and sound manipulation, relying on electronics, and contemporary genres. Similar to other artists of his kind – from Pedro Coquenão (Batida) to U-Cef (also Moroccan), from DJ Dolores to Shantel, from Mercan Dede to Talvin Singh, H.A.T. is immediately part of this lineage of the best transporters of traditional music to our present moment.
And with his very own style that collects influences from several musical genres. Hatim Belyamani has won awards in Morocco as a classical pianist, he has played electric guitar in a heavy-metal band, fell in love with the music from Northern Africa and with Arab music in general, besides being captivated by African genders South of the Sahara and of Brazil. At Harvard he studied composition, jazz, musicology. And he takes advantages of all of this to mix electronic music – resorting to several sub-genres of the so-called EDM (Electronic Dance Music) – with numerous styles taken from several regions of the world. Creator of two projects with different musical-aesthetic-visual concepts – REMIX ?? CULTURE (an international collective that records, recreates, produces, remixes, and films several musical traditions all over the world) – and EL MAC-INA – a more personal project that uses a P.A.D. device to launch sound and visual synchronized loops. A kaleidoscopic show that is absolutely hypnotic made from many sound bites and many images is what we can expect from H.A.T. on the second evening of Loulé Med.