UK + UE MINUS FRANCE
Cosmic Analog Ensemble is the brainchild of prolific Lebanese music producer and multi-instrumentalist Charif Megarbane, a one-man musical force who writes, performs and produces all of its creative output. With a DIY music ethos, Megarbane has crafted an inimitable style of instrumental music, a melting pot of global sounds that effortlessly glides between 1960s Italian library music, Spaghetti-Western soundtracks, afrobeat, Middle Eastern psychedelia and hip-hop breaks. In little more than a decade, Megarbane has released over 100 albums, offering an experimental musical diary of his late-night improvised sessions, recorded across Beirut, Nairobi, Paris, London and Lisbon – the various cities he’s called home. Released under CAE and multiple other aliases such as Trans-Mara Express, Tapeman No.1, Free Association Syndicate and Monumental Detail, Megarbane’s vast discography is archived on his own independent label and digital platform Hisstology, a window into his expansive yet insular musical universe, in which he plays (almost) every part.
Since 2009, Megarbane has released 31 albums under the Cosmic Analog Ensemble moniker, through which he’s developed his trademark sound of abstract analog library music for the 21 st century, soaked in the golden sunshine of the Mediterranean coast. ‘Expo Botanica’ is CAE’s latest offering, due to be released on vinyl via Hisstology Records on June 24th 2022 with a global physical distribution through Big Wax Records. Expo Botanica completes a trilogy of CAE albums, following the critically-acclaimed LPs ‘Une Vie Cent Detours’ and ‘Les Sourdes Oreilles'. ‘Une Vie Cent Detours’, was dubbed by Pitchfork as 'A major landmark on Megarbane’s musical travels' . The 2017 full-length ‘Les Sourdes Oreilles’, CAE’s first vinyl release, was hailed by Bandcamp as ‘a crate-digger’s dream, a magnum force of infectious grooves and sample-ready melodies that feel rare and familiar at the same time.’
Fronted by an abstract painting by Megarbane, ‘Expo Botanica’ features 16 instrumental tracks, each one the theme for the imagined life of a plant. Capturing the carefree innocence of the playground in its meandering melodies, ‘Expo Botanica’ could easily be the soundtrack to a 1970s children’s film, harking back to an era when they were scored by legendary composers like Piero Umiliani. The album illustrates Megarbane’s mastery of beautifully simplistic melodies with the kind of hypnotic hook that sticks in the mind for days. An album of two parts, Side A sets a tranquil atmosphere with whimsical European-style cinematic soundtracks, while Side B serves up infectious organ grooves, funk-laden breaks and tumbling Oriental psychedelic pop melodies. A master sonic illusionist, Megarbane is the maestro of his own fictional orchestra.