Thursday 2 July 2020
A trip to the Iranian electronic underground: Meet Saba Alizadeh fuses traditional string instrument and experimental composition

Did you know that Iran is gradually becoming recognised as a hub for some of the world’s most vital, forward-thinking experimental music? In one of the world’s most closed countries, a visionary music community now able to openly share its strange creations.

At Roskilde Festival 2020, we’re happy to present three exciting Iranian artists who will perform in a continuous flow, one after the other, and present each their take on what electronic music can be: Saba Alizadeh, Sote and Temp-Illusion.

Saba Alizadeh is a true master on the Iranian spike fiddle called a kamancheh (look). He blends his instrumental virtuosity with spherical electronics, samples of Persian music instruments and field recordings from his hometown Tehran.

He is son of the world-renowned tar and setar virtuoso Hossein Alizadeh, so it seemed like an obvious choice for Saba Alizadeh to study his own instrument. Later, he also dove into experimental sound art at the California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles.

Alizadeh has a more experimental approach to music, which can be heard on his debut album Scattered Memories from 2019.

The Iranian artist is also the founder of Noise Works, a platform and label for organising experimental concerts and for the transfer of knowledge of music technologies among young Iranian musicians which makes him a central figure in the music scene.