Cairo Jazz Club’s start of the year is shaping up to be one hell of a month, but one event in January sticks out like the sorest of sore thumbs, if society had historically deemed sore thumbs a good thing. On Tuesday 12th of January, KIK (Kairo is Koming) are set to take over CJC for one of the bar’s weekly alternative music nights.
If one institution, for lack of a better word, has come to personify experimental music in Egypt, it’s KIK; they might not have been the first to dibble and dabble in music, and they certainly won’t be the last, but few have been as prolific. Now, before we carry on, I am aware that to use words like ‘institution’ and ‘personify’ is to betray the fluid and intangible nature of experimental music as a concept – but I needed a strong second paragraph, so let’s not get stuck in some kind of intellectual musical black hole.
On of the keys to the collective’s success has been their gigging abroad; in addition to a number of well-received releases, Bosaina, $$$TAG$$$, ZULI, Ismael., and Hussein Sherbini and have made their mark in lands beyond ours and will continue to do so in the second half of January alongside sixth member, N/A\A, as they take on a European tour that will see them perform in Geneva and Berlin, among other places. Experimental music as a movement has, and will, reach a roadblock in Egypt and the group have found more of a welcome home for their brand of music, which makes the CJC gig all the more significant. The event also speaks to the increasing diversity of CJC’s entertainment; there aren’t many, or any, bars that can book a Latin jazz band on Sunday, then KIK on Tuesday, while guaranteeing packed houses for both nights.
By Kalam El Qahaira