An overlooked classic...if a drop dated...
Larry Davis | NYC/Long Island, NY | 04/25/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This record never fit in anywhere when it was released in 1990...17 years ago, sheesh...so it was bound to flop and hit the cutout bins, but it's a nice discovery almost 2 decades later. I used to have the disc when it was new, as I collected Sire's "Just Say..." series, where they debuted their roster of artists, new and old. For instance, on "Just Say Yesterday", consisting of rare tracks from Sire's vaults, it has Patti Smith's debut single "Piss Factory", and on "Just Say Anything", with it's theme revolving around censorship issues, it's where I discovered my friend Richard X Heyman, as well as now-obscure British duo NASA. On that CD was the title track "Insha-Allah!!", and the band's hybrid sound of 70s glammish hard poppy rock, 80s electronic new wave dance rhythms, and eastern, middle-eastern & Arabic melodic flourishes & instrumental additions intrigued me a great deal.
So I bought the CD, as well as the CD single of "Shah-Shah" with cool extended remixes and additional B-side tracks worthy of the album. I found the album used recently, after having been on my wantlist for years...a few years ago, my copy got lost...either it was stolen, or I sold it along with some junk CDs I didn't want anymore, and I kinda missed it...same with other obscurities like the Solar Twins debut...well, after listening to it first time in years, I still love it, but the heavy use of drum machines over real drums dates the sound somewhat, but in a charming way.
Still, for some reason, I don't know why, NASA reminds me of obscure 80s band Until December...maybe it's the guitar sound, the vocals, their kind of hooks, I don't know.
I still wonder what inspired this band, in their melding of east & west, their ambition was very welcome, but perhaps, their timing was off or this "experiment" just didn't gel with what was going on with modern rock radio or the clubs in 1990???
I wonder what Momo and Cash are doing right now in 2007.
It was cool they incorporated the talents of ex-Cult drummer Les Warner (who went on to play with Richard X Heyman in the late 90s), the late, great Israeli goddess Ofra Haza, Andy Paley (half of the undeservedly obscure duo the Paley Brothers, who recorded for Sire), a member of Killing Joke, and various exotic musicians.
History will be kind to this album...I have a hunch...
All 9 songs are cool, from the catchy Arabic dance rockers "Power To Love", "Shah-Shah", "Magic Jewelled Limousine", "UFO Over Cairo" & "Serophia", the epic title track, the techno-ey "Wild Ways", the lush "Woman" & "Burning Gold"...all 9 songs, with neat novel arrangements and lyrical imagery that matches the music, creating a mood that never leaves you.
Like I said, the sound might sound a drop dated from the heavy use of drum machines and programming over real drums by Les Warner, but the album really leaves an impression that you never forget...it never left me...and I wonder if Momo and Cash have done music since, together or apart...or if they ever will...
People will rediscover this album...just watch..."