Night Show  –  Sasma (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

Music evolves for many reasons. The technology behind it means that money is no longer a limitation, the access to music on mass is doing away with genres to a large degree as people are influenced by music from all styles and eras, and as the world becomes a smaller place, geographic and cultural inspirations become much more widespread. And so it is that you find all sorts of music in all places, rock playing in  bars in Katmandu, Cuban jazz as the background music at Japanese house parties and East European folk traditions in Canadian wilderness cabins. And it is perhaps to this spirit of borderless and boundless music that Sasma was inspired to write his song, one which saw him as the youngest writer to pen a song in the most languages.

If it has a genre it is perhaps Cypriot rap, and why not, but labels are pointless, and whilst you can say that Night Show falls very much into the modern rap sound, geographically, or at least linguistically, it is better described as world music. That’s a term which usually implies traditional folk sounds garnered from village inns and festivals dedicated to music which is part of the cultural heritage but what else can you call a song which wanders freely between languages. World music indeed.

It would be enough to fire off such rapid fire raps if you were using just your first language, but to do so across a number of languages, switching and swapping seemingly as it pleases him, Sasma’s lyrical delivery is impressive. It sits over a skittering trap beat, lazy hip-hop rhythms and hazy electronic washes, throws in a few exotic vibes and spacious piano lines but it is the vocals which are the lead element in this cutting edge rhyme.

The video takes us through the warm urban environment that, I presume, Sasma calls home. He wanders cafe lined backstreets, wanders through and over the city in a kaleidoscope of colours and attitude, sharp fashion and unmitigated swagger. And it works, even if you don’t pick up on all the words due to the dexterity at work and the constant switching between languages, you can hear that this is a cut above most mumble rapping, bedroom wannabes and their cliched glorifications and self-aggrandisement. A worthy addition to the rap canon and no mistake!

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