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Boomkat Product Review:
‘Atlantics’ is Fatima Al Qadiri’s first feature film score, for Senegalese director Matti Diop’s Cannes Grand Prix-winning film about a love story set amidst an arranged marriage to another man
Technically Fatima’s 2nd film score following her work on Meqdad Al Kout’s 2009 short ‘Banana’, the mostly beat-less arrangements cannily link back to the vaporous nature of her standout debut as Ayshay at the start of this decade. Fair to say she’s been a pivotal figure over the interim via a string of template shaping LPs for UNO and Hyperdub, and ‘Atlantic’ serves to demonstrate just how far she’s travelled since then.
Fatima’s sound design skills and knack for emotive storytelling are clearly present across the soundtrack. Using a palette of sheer, synthetic string pads coupled with diegetic snippets from the film, the soundtrack unfolds with a discernable nocturnal atmosphere emphasised by her trademark use of wondrous reverb and subtle melodic gilding, while the sounds of Atlantic waves and Senegalese voices almost unmistakably signal where the action is taking place. Like the LP jacket itself, the dominant tonal colour is deep blue, casting an enigmatic shadow of melancholy and intrigue that manifests most beautifully in the LPs highlights such as ‘Alleil’, which is practically notes away from her Ayshay work, and the accusingly romantic cue ‘Body Double’.