Tunisian producer and film music composer Ghoula, born Wael Jegham, is set to make his hotly-anticipated comeback, seven years after his debut album was released, revealing to have a sophomore project, titled Demi-Ecrémé, in the works. Meaning “semi-skimmed” in French, his second sonic statement will make use of several signature elements, which have become fully-fledged features of his music, including niche refined sampling while paying an infinite tribute to his native North African roots.
Ghoula (meaning “monster” or “ghoul”) teased the first track off the forthcoming album in June of last year, which served as a listenable appetizer of what is yet to come, showcasing the alternative artist’s palette as he weaves together electro-pop, techno, breakbeat, and IDM with samples from his personal collection of vintage vinyls collected from his travels across North Africa. Stitching a patchwork of rich and diverse sounds and delivering an impactful and immersive experience straight to his audience, Demi–Écrémé, which is expected to hit shelves on Feb. 10, is a cocktail of culture that serves as an homage to the Maghreb region’s centuries-old heritage, symbols, and traditions.
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“What I like about sampling is that I can isolate a vocal from its initial background, and teleport it towards a novel arrangement. The aim is never to misrepresent the essence of it, it’s actually the opposite. I try to make it resonate with the original intention of the composer, to convey their vision and respect the original work. When I’m sampling an old vinyl, I’m always asking myself the same question: how far can I go with this primary matter, this texture, this melody, this rhythm? This is my way of preserving the rich heritage of my homeland, while refreshing it at the same time,” Ghoula said in a press release.
The album’s title also happens to follow a similar theme to that of his first collection of songs, Hlib El-Ghoula (Milk of the ghoul). Ghoula’s upcoming EP also refers to the concept of milk as a nutritious fluid giving sustenance, in this case, the title “Semi-skimmed” nods to the multitude and diverse range of languages circulating in the North African region— the same way you find several products under the dairy umbrella.
Carrying its own lot of ambition and promises ahead of its release, Ghoula’s second album is one to certainly pay close attention to and listen to carefully. The curated selection of sounds, when assembled together, create an immersive and layered listening experience that showcases the creative’s artistic vision and skills as a producer and composer. Meanwhile, those who can’t wait a couple more weeks for new Ghoula music, can check out his latest release, Zinek, below.