Dua Saleh- Rosseta EP
Local artist Dua Saleh has done it again with their rock and roll inspired followup to last year’s EP Nūr. Inspired by 1930s musician Sister Rosetta Tharpe, whom the EP is named after, Saleh is every bit as rebellious on this EP as Tharpe was when she injected gospel tunes with swagger and distorted guitar. While the rock and roll influence doesn’t come through as strong in the sound of the EP, there is an amount of volatile emotion and distortion that Saleh incorporates into that wasn’t present on Nūr (arabic for “the light”) which is, well, lighter. Saleh also draws comparisons between themselves and Tharpe in the two’s queerness in rigid religious atmospheres. For those unfamiliar, Saleh is non-binary and grew up in a strict muslim household. While the Sudanese-American singer hasn’t shied away in the past from their identity, it is especially present on this EP. “Smut” is the first song Saleh has done with arabic in it, but listen carefully you may miss it in the layers of synth and guitar. These dense hypnotic songs are made possible with help from executive producer and Minneapolis based artist Psymun, who also lent his hand on Nūr as well. The change and growth Saleh has shown just in the short year between EPs has been astounding, it will be interesting to see what a full album looks like.