There can be few musicians who position themselves more precariously than S H I R A N. Born in a Jewish household in Israel to Iraqi and Yemeni parents, S H I R A N has in many ways turned the music industry in the Middle East on its head. Eschewing politics, religion and gender issues, she has opted to sing in her ancestral language of Yemenite Arabic, endearing her to the Arab world, whilst at the same time receiving the support of her Israeli countrymen. Although music is often used as a throw-away, glib cliche as a way to unite different peoples, this seems a particularly pertinent example of how this is in fact a great truism.
Although the language will be alien to the majority of people, the unusual mix of African rhythms, Western soul and pop, as well as Arabic song-structures and immediately beguiling and are easy to lose yourself in. Highly recommended.