SARA SAYED (21.04.2011)


    1 Take Me Away 3:38 FITCR1100026
    2 Haze 3:17 FITCR1100012
    3 Sormenjäljistä 5:25 FITCR1100014
    4 Sure 3:48 FITCR1100013
    5 Näin kai 3:28 FITCR1100027
    6 Who are you 4:08 FITCR1100028
    7 Shallow Waters 2:49 FITCR1000189
    8 En saa henkeä 4:07 FITCR1100015
    9 Senaatintori 3:30 FITCR1100029


    Sara Sayed is a young vocalist, singer and songwriter hailing from Helsinki, Finland. Already a fixture in the local scene through her many collaborations, Sayed steps up as a solo artist on her gloriously soulful debut album, released in April 2011 on Texicalli Records.


    Sara Sayed is not someone you could forget easily. A charismatic young vocalist, she has the ability to make the stage her own in an uncanny way. This is something the fans of such forward-thinking ensembles as Auteur Jazz, Rime and Vibraltar have come to notice already some time ago. It is a high time, then, to introduce Sayed as a solo artist proper, as is the case on her self-titled Texicalli Records debut.


    Sayed, 26 years of age, comes from a Finnish-Egyptian background, calls Helsinki her hometown and resides presently in London where she studies music. This rich array of influences could be something useful in conceptualizing her approach, which seems beyond her years as an artist so far. In fact, she has appeared on stage not only with the aforementioned ensembles but also with her own band already since 2007. It is precisely the well-earned mileage plus a coherently formed musical idea rooted in the tradition of soul and jazz that comes accross on her debut LP.


    Not a straight up modernist in the contemporary sense, by far not a retro-esque traditionalist either, Sayed according to her music is something refreshingly in between. There’s the organic warmth of soul classics in the mix, yet it all sounds not vintage by default but quite timeless and of-the-day all at once. A fine example of this is ’Haze’, recently released as the first single from the album and gaining good momentum among critics and fans alike.


    On her new album, Saara Sayed sings in both English and Finnish, a decision made solely on the basis of convenience. Convenient it indeed seems, as Sayed manages to bring her highly-regarded stage persona into the studio with remarkable ease.


    A natural product to the bone, Sayed’s first solo effort comes about not because of an artist’s need to get their voice on tape just to make a point. Sara Sayed has already proven herself as a brightly shining star of a vocalist on several projects. Instead, what’s crucial here is the organic nature of the process of growing ideas into songs, developing them ripe for collecting, and then presenting what’s inside to the public at large.


    The new Sara Sayed album comes about because these are songs that deserve to be heard. It all sounds too simple, but could be hard to come by, all the same. If you want new music with honesty, vision and, above all, talent, you’ve got it right here.