Here is my latest from Your Middle East (10 April 2013):
From the moment I heard that the Lebanese band Mashrou' Leila was coming to Istanbul, I knew I was in for a great evening; I just never imagined how much this band, made up of former students from the American University of Beirut, could dish out.
Just a year ago, this group made its way across my Facebook feed, and it took only weeks before they became a part of my daily life, with a ritual developing at my home where I would share their music with friends coming over in evenings before going out to enjoy Istanbul nights.
What strikes me most about Mashrou' Leila’s music, and its musicians, is that it seems to be very much a product of urban mixing, which I myself experienced both in Haifa and Istanbul. While their music offers a splash of Beirut, evident also in their Lebanese accents, it is rather a testament to a multicultural existence, which is not forced but natural; it is a dangerous mix of happiness and the backdrop of a much darker reality. Song after song, they offer a personal narrative of crossing borders, challenging existing cultural, social and gender constructs.
To continue reading, here is the link