[ Ninja Tune / LP ]
Release Date: Friday 28 April 2023
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Nabihah Iqbal returns with DREAMER, her long-awaited new album out 28th April 2023 on Ninja Tune. Five years on since the London-born artist, curator, broadcaster and lecturer's debut Weighing Of The Heart was released and two years in the making, DREAMER is Nabihah's rawest and most reflective work to date.
It arrives at a pivotal time for Nabihah who has made her prolific work rate look effortless with a resume as varied as her music having recently collaborated with artist Zhang Ding, been commissioned to compose music for the Turner Prize, collaborated with Wolfgang Tillmans as part of his Tate Modern exhibition and was recently involved in a group performance at the Barbican as part of its major Basquiat retrospective. She has also contributed to Serpentine's recent book '140 Artists' ideas for Planet Earth' and has given guest lectures at the Royal College of Art. In 2022 Nabihah was announced as a guest director for England's largest multi-arts festival, Brighton Festival, in 2023, her "biggest, most challenging and exciting curatorial position" to date.
DREAMER see's Nabihah reflect on her experiences during the early months of 2020, when her studio was burgled. All her work was lost, including her long-awaited album. Already suffering from a broken hand and a severe case of burnout, she felt helpless. While the forensic police looked for fingerprints in her studio, she received a call. It was her grandmother; her grandfather had suffered a brain haemorrhage. Nabihah got on a plane to Karachi, Pakistan the next day.
Using broader concepts, DREAMER is "more introspective, because it's about things that I've been through over the last few years," she says. The album is an intimate journey through snapshots and memories of Nabihah's life. Exploring personal identity and grief through the soft-focus lens of melancholy, the album is not one specific sound. Her left-field lo-fi aesthetic twirls itself throughout as she manages to skate between tracks without ever sounding disjointed. Back in the UK, she embarked on residencies in Scotland and Suffolk to finish the album where she switched off from the internet, discovering "all my emotions and feelings. I was so sad and unwell before that but hardly anybody knew."
This World Couldn't See Us
Sweet Emotion (lost in devotion)
A Tender Victory