Maurice Louca is one of the most exciting artists in the alternative music scene across the Arab world today.
Maurice Louca was born in Cairo, Al Qahirah, Egypt, where he lives and works as musician . He is a pioneer of the Egyptian experimental music. Alongside Mahmoud Waly (bass and electronic music) and Mahmoud Refat (percussion and electronics) , he founded the group Bikya, a folktronica project. The trio of musicians came together to create music combining acoustic and electronic experimentation, in which the complexities and contradictions of experience "live" result in a dynamic artistic innovation. . The band is still together, performing sporadically, but now the three individuals work on their solo and side projects more regularly.
He is also a member of the band Alif ensemble.
Alif Ensemble is a pan-Arab, multi-instrumental band due to release their album in the coming year. Founded by renowned Iraqi oud player Khyam Allami, and formed around Louca and Palestinian composer and producer Tamer Abu Ghazaleh , the project brings together various other musicians from Syria, Lebanon and Jordan, creating a contemporary take on oud-driven acoustic-electronic music.
Maurice Louca released his first solo album Garraya in January 2011 under the label Cairo 100 COPIES . It includes songs composed and produced the last two years . Composing music is a mix of hypnotic sounds and rhythmic tones . Maurice Louca has also composed for theater, film and collaborated with several contemporary artists.
Their sound is melancholic yet modern, with frequent vocal interventions by Ghazaleh, who recites a poem called “Hassan” by Iraqi poet Sargon Boulos against progressive rock riffs, electronic textures and some improvisation when performed live.
Louca’s music plays off a make-believe conversation between east and west, past and present, earth and space. It feels simultaneously tribal and futuristic, and the music becomes an agency for the imagination. Your dance movements are your only means of expression between a folkloric past and funky, fidgety future.
His solo work proves his wild imagination from start to finish — most of what we are hearing as the audience are separately recorded tracks of instrumental pieces by various musicians that Louca has worked with over the years. He's now playing with the Omarchestra which is an 8 piece guitar orchestra initiated by Charbel Haber which includes guitarists Sam Shalabi, Sharif Sehnaoui, Fadi Tabbal, Tony Elieh, Osman Orabi, and Umut Çaglar
He has composed and preformed live the original sound track for Sherif el Azma's Video/Lecture, Psycho Geography of Loose Associations, part of Meeting Points 5 . Over the last couple of years he has performed his live sets Passage 35 and Flood lights, leading him up to his latest studio work Garraya which is due for release January 2011 by the music label 100copies. Maurice Louca represents an extreme wing of Egyptian contemporary music. He is known for taking experimental sounds a solid bit further than most colleagues, and has distinguished himself with an effective combination of beautiful ambient and more introverted drone sounds.
Maurice claims to be inspired by Arabic folk music as well as modern electronica and the sounds of Cairo’s streets. All these sources can be easily identified as they are floating about in a rich and dynamic sound picture best described by British music mag Bearded Magazine as “a veritable eco-system”. Maurice creates music which can at times be demanding, but the surprising combination of peaceful and intense renders the total experience even more harmonious and beautiful.
Maurice Louca released his second solo album "Benhayyi Al-Baghbaghan" (Salute the Parrot) in November 2014
Two years in the making, Benhayyi Al-Baghbaghan (Salute the Parrot) lands as his most original work to date. His trademark whirlwind of percussion-based rhythms seamlessly intertwines with layers of jarring yet coherent compositions and improvisations, rendered by a host of Arab and international guest artists.
Following years of collaborations and inconspicuous touring across Europe and the Arab world, Louca has become renowned for his powerful live shows. But those who have experienced earlier iterations of Benhayyi Al-Baghbaghan (Salute the Parrot) at one of Louca’s performances will hear an album that is far more complex and hard-hitting.
Inspired by many influences, from psychedelic to Egyptian shaabi, Louca shatters the confines of musical and cultural labelling with eight genre-defying tracks. Like a virtual voyage between the charged intensity of confined spaces and the tranquil vastness of open landscapes, the album lays out a trajectory where beautiful and mesmerising fragments sparingly punctate the full-blown pounding episodes.
Maurice Louca مورېس لوقا - Garraya
03 Flood Lights
05 All Of That time flow
06 Half Tooth
08 Repeat To Fade
Maurice Louca مورېس لوقا - Benhayyi Al Baghbaghan بنحېې البغبغان
01 Al-'Asr Adh-Dhahabi (The Golden Age)
02 Al-Mashoub (Idiot)
03 Benhayyi Al-Baghbaghan (Salute the Parrot)
04 Tasaddu' (Rupture)
05 Maksim (Maxim)
06 Al-Mallahat (Salt Pans)
07 Sharraq Rah Tegharrab (It Will Set)
08 Malnash Diyah (Spineless)
نسخة عمل - copier travailler from Islam el Azzazi on Vimeo.
A 16mm film by Islam el Azzazi 2012 .
Performance: Alaa Abdullatif.
Music: Maurice Louca