David Starfire – Ascend
Between touring and founding the Dub Kirtan All Stars project with FreQ Nasty, David Starfire has found time to release his second album Ascend.
Starfire first appeared on the scene with a hard electro-rock sound that had him touring with the likes of Nine Inch Nails. Since then, his music has evolved to be less definable, effortlessly mixing Middle Eastern world music with electronic elements from dubstep and trap. He broke into the festival circuit with this new sound, performing at Coachella and Love Parade, as well as at private parties hosted by companies such as Samsung and Google. He also started playing alongside a 15-strong live band including vocalists and belly dancers.
Starfire has incorporated this group aspect into his new album. Debut Bollyhood Bass was a solo effort, whereas Ascend features a wide range of supporting artists including Desert Dwellers and Flying Lotus collaborator Sheila Govindarajan. Desert Dwellers feature on House of Bhangra, a mix of A R Rahman and Daft Punk: a perfect example of Starfire’s ability to blend genres.
You can imagine hearing opener Indian Summer on the summer festival circuit or in a club resort; the quick Knight Riddum reminds of dawn after an all-night rave.
On a few tracks, Starfire leans towards one genre. Habibi sticks to an Arabic sound, with a slight bass-line hidden by the overuse of an accordion. In contrast, Jumpin’ Off is dance floor orientated with its heavy bass line and repetitive lyrics: “I’m the life of the party.” These tracks aside, Starfire sticks to his successful formula. Hopefully he is the flag-bearer for more producers willing to mix genres. If so, Ascend could be the start of something big.
Ascend was released on 19th February. For further information about David Starfire, click here.
Listen to Indian Summer here