Mashrou’ Leila at Middle East Downstairs

Mashrou’ Leila are a phenomenally talented band from Beirut that plays music that we’ll call Alternative Rock, for lack of a better term.  The fact is that it defies easy characterization.  The songs are in Arabic, and clearly influenced by Arabic musical culture, but they are much more in the vein of progressive rock than Arabic Chaabi or Classical Music.  The songs are creative and sometimes controversial (see this article from The Guardian), and front man Hamed Sinno is disarmingly charismatic, reminiscent of a young Freddy Mercury.  Check out their website to see their newest video.  Here’s just a small gallery from their sold out show at the Middle East in Cambridge on October 18.  It’s small.  I’d forgotten my camera, so these are just from the iPhone 6s. It didn’t do terribly, even in the low light.

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