In the summer of 2008, ABRI boarded flight EK208 from Dubai to London with one intention: to record an album the way they used to. Inspired by the classic 1970s recordings of Marley, Wonder, Fela Kuti et al, they searched for a studio that would help them capture that live vibe and analogue warmth. So, following in the footsteps of Coldplay, The Killers, Snow Patrol and M.I.A, they chose The Fortress Studios.
On a beautiful, sunny London morning ABRI arrived at the studio and met the engineer Tom Morris, who had just finished recording with Keane. The piano was tuned, the Otari 2 inch tape and Neve desk were on, Hamdan’s vintage Neuman U67 was connected, and all the others mics were in place, it was time to record. ABRI, did three takes of each track, then chose the best one. No punch ins and no auto tune; all live, all at the same time recording. The only overdubs were for backing vocals and additional musicians; Guitar: Jo Caleb (Beverley Knight, Gary Husband, Jim Mullen) and a horn section, The16 bit Horns (Herbie Hancock, Nikka Costa, Roy Ayers, Omar). Ten tracks were recorded in four days.
A bonus track which showcases Dubai’s local talent has also been added to the album. A remix of A Piece of Yourself by producer Sol-Phonic from Diligent Thought and features Middle East rap sensation The Narcicyst.
The tracks were then sent to Will Davies at Strongroom Studios London (The Who, Lily Allen,Kasabian) for mixing. The album was then mastered by Naweed(Kanye West, James Morrison) at Whitfield Mastering.
Blank Notes is available in Stores now across the Middle East and is available for licensing world wide.