Middle East

Talented duo makes a splash in Jeddahs music scene

Sat, 2018-05-05 02:46

RIYADH: A thudding bass beat, haunting electronic chords, rich, strong vocals top of all that mesmerizing visual art created live and on the spot — these are the trademarks of performances by Jeddah band Statues of Sinking Men.

After making their live debut, this duo from Jeddah are taking everything you know about the music scene in the Kingdom and turning it on its head.

Depeche Mode performing earlier this year.
The British electronic music pioneers were a major
influence on Saudi band
Statues of Sinking Men. (Getty Images)

With Abdulmalik Zubailah providing the music and vocals, and Abdullah Babrouk the visuals, the band offers a refreshing take that has been delighting fans and new audiences.

During their shows, the duo keeps it low key, letting Babrouks artwork and Zubailahs vocals speak for themselves.

Biggest influences

The result is a futuristic, almost ethereal experience, that pays homage to their biggest influences — British pioneers of electronic music Depeche Mode, American bands Tool and Nine Inch Nails, and Australian psychedelic rockers Tame Impala.

Zubailah, 21, a university student, is also vocalist for Jeddah rock band Skeleton Crowd. Alongside bandmate Faris Al-Sobyani, Skeleton Crowd has built a modest fan following locally, but Zubailah wanted to experiment instead of being restricted to one genre.

“Statues of Sinking Men is a space for me to express everything Ive ever wanted to say about how I feel,” he said.

“Every emotion, good or bad, positive or negative, with complete freedom.”

Babrouk, 18, is on his university prep year. He plans to launch an online gallery, called Heartmade, to showcase his artwork, in the next few months.

Inspired by the visuals showcased by Tame Impala at the Lollapalooza music festival, Babrouk created a computer program that allows him to create performance visuals in real time so that he can produce artwork for every show.

“The idea was to ensure that no two performances by the band are the same,” Babrouk said.

“Every show is a unique experience.”


The public-performance process begins at home for both artists.

Zubailah tinkers with a variety of music-making apps and synthesizers, replicating sounds he likes, then he writes the lyrics. When he finishes a song, Babrouk chooses the accompanying art and color scheme, the speed at which the images warp and change, and the timing of the transitions between the different elements.

The result is soothing, psychedelic visuals to match the music.

Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaJeddahStatues of Sinking Men Orchestra of Rome soloists delights Jeddah music loversA romance for the ages thrills opera lovers in Riyadh


Arab News


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