Heavy Synths / Noise / Electronic


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For Youniss Ahamad, music isn’t just an exploration of sound, but a means to unearth explanations for the ways of the surrounding world. Youniss’ journey started during quarantine, and produced several tracks characterized by jagged rhythms underneath heavy synths and distorted vocals. In the 4 short years since the birth of his project, Youniss’ music has evolved into an amalgam of noise, electronics, and samples interacting with his post-punk and hip-hop influenced poetry. In all his music, Youniss aims to examine and communicate his own Black life as it unfolds in Belgium, a country with a particularly brutal colonial history.

Describing Youniss’ lyricism as poetic isn’t to impose any limitation on his vocal ability. While his self-titled 2020 debut sees Youniss mainly speaking through samples and other artists, on 2023’s White Space, Youniss steps into the foreground, going from wailing to screaming and everywhere in between. White Space took Youniss to great places, earning Bandcamp’s Album of the Day distinction alongside appearances at the the Netherlands’ Rewire Festival and Belgium’s Out The Frame Festival. With his next work, Do We Try Beyond The Edge? Youniss approaches a new rhythmic proclivity in his vocals, matching them to the same jagged rhythms and glitchy syncopation that have come to define his sound.

“Where White Space was the movement against the views of white society on a person ofcolor,” Youniss explains, “Do We Try is the forever existential question of if existing in a capitalist hellscape is better than to go to non-western spaces that get exploited in the most horrific forms of aggression.”

Youniss describes Do We Try Beyond The Edge? as the “direct sequel” to White Space, taking everything given from his previous works and amplifying them. With an emboldened urgency fueled by his past year of experience, Youniss is full-on shouting his ideas with the force of an artist like MC Ride or Show Me The Body’s Julian Pratt. Where White Space communicated anemphasis on vibe and the melancholy emotional influence of post-punk, Do We Try Beyond The Edge?, is confrontational with more rhythmically focused vocals that stay deeply attached to a sense of rhyme in a way Youniss had yet to demonstrate. “Pieces Of A Man” was influenced and loosely based as an interpolation of Gil Soctt Heron’s “Home Is Where The Hatred Is,” while “Escaper,” is a moody track that gets a shot of adrenaline from its choppy, overdriven drums.

Overall, Youniss’ work is described by the artist as “mostly influenced by general experiences as a POC,” but in less modest terms, it’s an exposition of the 21st century global culture as being one defined by anti-Blackness. Through this sentiment, Do We Try Beyond The Edge? is a welcome addition to the canon of Black art as it mirrors an experience that seems unlimited to any one place, western or non.

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Quérine Appeldorn



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