Formed in 2012 by DJs Guido Minisky and Hervé Carvalho in multicultural Paris, they both fell in love with the sounds of the East while on a trip to Tunisia with Gilb’R. Deciding to work together, their aim has been to create a space for Eastern culture within contemporary Western electronic music that is “representative of our days” (after all, it’s impossible to deny the influence Arabic culture has had on French society). The result has been a psychedelic blend of strings, percussion and melody from the Middle East and North Africa with the basic structures of house and techno, quite often of the acid variety.
Far from engaging in cheap cultural appropriation, their work has been given the nod of approval by the likes of Tunisian producers Joakim Bouaziz and Gilb’R, and Syrian wedding singer/electronic artist Omar Souleyman, among many others. Their early remixes and collaborations were released as the ‘Acid Arab Collections’ compilation in 2013. Since then they’ve grown from a duo into a crew of sorts, being joined by Pierrot Casanova, Nicolas Borne and Algerian keyboardist Kenzi Bourras, with their full-length debut album ‘Musique de France‘ being released last year.
In the third of our series of interviews with the Liverpool Psych Fest congregation, we spoke to Acid Arab about their upcoming appearance at the festival.
How would you describe your music?
A combination of Acid and Arab.
Who or what have been the biggest influences on your sound?
Abdou El Omari, Muslimgauze, Islam Chipsy, Ziad Rahbani and Baris K.
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What made you want to play at Liverpool Psych Fest and will this be your first time?
We want to make a selfie in front of ‘The Cavern’.
How well do you know Liverpool and what’s your favourite thing about the city?
We don’t know shit but can’t wait to learn.
Indoor festivals have been growing in popularity in recent years, have you played at many of them and how do they compare to outdoor events?
We’ve played many of indoors and outdoors… Outdoors are nicer soundwise, indoors are wilder dancewise.
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What’s your favourite festival memory?
When audience offers us food, cigarettes, drinks, drugs or sex. It’s really nice.
Have you ever dabbled in psychedelics? If so, how would you describe your experience?
We’d like to answer, but we’re afraid the big green cat might come back and tell us to shut up.
Apart from yourselves, who would you recommend people see at Liverpool Psych Fest?
There’s a line on the poster that says Pigs 7 times. That’s the gig we recommend (and would like to see!).
Why should festival goers take time out to come and see you play? What can they expect from your live set?
They will love thy neighbour.
The sixth edition of Liverpool Psych Fest will take place at Camp & Furnace on 22nd and 23rd of September. Check out our review of last year’s festival here. For more details about this year’s event head over to www.LiverpoolPsychFest.com. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased here.