If Parisian project Acid Arab on their 2016 debut 'Musique De France', still sounded a bit like just another exponent of the Syrian dabke sound popularized worldwide by Omar Souleyman, then they clearly decided on exploring other horizons for successor 'Jdid'. The fact the title of the album can be translated from Arabic as "new" is only appropriate. The album sounds a lot darker - think eighties new wave and Detroit techno meets dabke, raï, Tuareg blues and even some Turkish neo-psychedelia in 'Ejma'. To get it all done, Guido Minisky and Hervé Carvalho (these days joined by Algerian keyboardist Kenzi Bourras) joined forces with a whole range of vocalists, musicians and producers. The Algerian divas Radia Manel and Cheikha Hadjla appear in opener 'Staifia' ("girl from Setif", a medium-sized university town in the north of Algeria and the Manel's birthplace) and closing track 'Malek Ya Zahri', eighties-raï in a new Acid Arab jacket. Paris-based raï artists Amel Wahby and Sofiane Saidi borrowed their voices for 'Nassibi' ("fate") and 'Rimitti Dor' ("Rimitti plays"), an ode to the godmother of raï: Cheikha Rimitti. With Nigerian Tuareg band Les Filles De Illighadad, Acid Arab recorded 'Soulan' ("softly"), and, just like on predecessor 'Musique De France', Turkish vocalist and bağlama/saz-player Cem Yildiz accompanies the band in the aforementioned 'Ejma'. 'Électrique Yarghol', on the other hand, is an instrumental based completely around the sounds Jordanian yarghol player Hasan Minawi manages to conjure up from his traditional Palestinian reed flute. Syrian keyboard player Rizan Said, who gained worldwide fame thanks to his collaborations with Omar Souleyman, once again shows his dexterity in 'Ras El Ain', and Ammar 808 (Sofyann Ben Youssef) co-produced the hypnotic 'Rajel', in which the sound of a mezwed (a North-African variant of the bagpipe) plays the leading role. Enchanting pan-Arabian music trip!