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Live Review: Motez shares utterly stunning and intimate new 'Soulitude' EP

12 June 2020 | 11:54 am | Emma Jones

Australian/Iraqi producer Motez has delivered an utterly spellbinding new EP this week created in response to isolation and seclusion titled 'Soulitude'.

To say that we here at Purple Sneakers have been fans of Australian/Iraqi producer MOTEZ for a while is a bit of an understatement. We have chronicled his steady rise over the last few years from the very early days, and have relished in watching him become a globally recognised talent for his purposeful, intentional dance music. In saying that, even we were taken by surprise with just how carefully considered and heartfelt his latest release really is.

Titled Soulitude, his latest release is a five track record sees him step away from the big-room club sounds more than ever before to deliver an emotionally palpable, raw and ambient body of work. Created in response to "the global mindset of isolation," he distills his "own experiences and the natural human responses to seclusion" into spell-binding arrangements that delve deep into the many facets of solitude.

The last few months have meant the world was as a whole plunged into a period of deep confusion, grief, anticipation and sudden isolation. Collectively, we all had to figure out life as we knew it all over again, and simultaneously navigate the intense and complex nature of what this means on a personal and societal level. Listening to this record, it transports me back to the early phases of trying to find normality, through the surprising and unsuspecting mourning period of what life might've held for me, and the discomfort of trying to work it all out as I went. At the same time, Soulitude provides resolution and solace in knowing that I'm not alone in this, and evokes those moments of bizarre bliss and the quiet sanctuary that caught me off guard as well.

Exploring stillness and space, Soulitude encompasses a lot of emotional intensity in its songs. From the opening notes of 'Shell' which Motez says is about “how much of what we thought was important becomes trivial, that we discard our thin shells and connect with those around us," to the palpable longing of 'Where The Heart Is', Motez masterfully navigates these complex moments with ease.

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Moving into 'Oohm' meaning “mother” in Arabic, Motez doubles down on that raw emotion, which makes sense given it was written in one take after he heard of the passing of a friend's mother. "It made me think more about those in our lives who are our tethers, who help anchor us when life gets complicated and unfair," he shared.

From here, Motez moves into the optimistic 'Cascade', a song all about finding moments of relief of respite in amongst the toughness, before wrapping things up with the utter tranquility of 'Uproot', a significant song asking us all to lean into the prospect of new beginnings.

As Australia gets ready to slowly and steadily open back up, Soulitude is a reminder of human nature when it comes to seclusion, and a glorious representation of the re-awakening we're about to embark on together. Ultimately, 2020 has been about coming together in many different ways — even if physically was not one of them — and Soulitude is a sonic representation of that. If you listen to one new release this week, let it be this.

To accompany the release of his new EP, Motez has shared a live video of him performing the record in the beautiful setting of South Australia's stunning Fleurieu Peninsula. View that below:

Soulitude is out now on Sweat It Out. Buy/stream here.

Words by Emma Jones

Image by Daniel Marks / @marksee