Crammed Discs are delighted to re-issue the catalogue of Soapkills, Yasmine Hamdan's former band, whose cult status has kept growing in the Arab world ever since the group's demise in 2005.
One of the very first indie bands to emerge in the Middle East, Soapkills was founded at the end of the '90s by Yasmine Hamdan and Zeid Hamdan, both born in Beirut, Lebanon, but not related. They drew their inspiration from Arab music (both classical and folk) and from electronic music, dub and trip hop.
Soapkills recorded three albums, respectively entitled Bater (2001), Cheftak (2002) and Enta Fen (2005), which all came out on small Lebanese labels. Their music quickly became the soundtrack to the vibrant, young arts scene which developed in postwar Lebanon, and the band gradually acquired an emblematic status.
Soapkills stopped operating when Yasmine moved to Paris, where she first teamed up with Mirwais to create the Y.A.S. project, and then worked on her debut solo album, Ya Nass (2013). Zeid remained in Lebanon, where he took part in various projects, and currently produces several artists.
Yasmine and Zeid have now joined forces to curate a definitive Soapkills compilation album.