Ali Muhareb – ‘Existentially Wasted” Review

Posted: by Sean Gonzalez

To be intoxicated with one’s existence has to be baffling. Maybe that’s why throughout Existentially Wasted one can never quite get a grip on what will happen next. Much like the spontaneity of actions that surges through our conscious when we are in a different state of mind, psych-pop artist Ali Muhareb utilizes a variety of instruments to let his music be as sporadic and difficult to follow as half of the dialogue of Half-Baked. Muhareb has the ability to combine all of his instruments into endorphin releasing music and that’s the best part of getting wasted with him.

Lead single “When Do I Begin?” has a video that takes your eyes through an acid laced journey of vivid colors and a hazy Muhareb seducing us with his monotonous pulse of vocal deliveries. His lyrics fly through the bigger questions of life and answers them through the pop beat and fuzzy instrument section. Opening track “I Will Write A Song” is not only a unique title but it follows a structureless format to how to open any record. It fades in to an odd beat that has random instruments and vocal formats finding their space. It’s more than just an opener, it’s an ice breaker, and one that grabs the attention in a new and spontaneous way. A track like this is done so well it almost feels like an intro to a Gorillaz full length. It’s like the one person that approaches you at the bar and asks what you think about the current situation of penguins in the world. It leaves you speechless yet thoughtful, beautifully leading into the title track “Existentially Wasted.” 

And once Muhareb has struck the gold mine of sparking the conversation, he sweeps you off your feet. From then on, he has full control and power. The title-track is a bit easier to follow between it’s eastern feel and vigorous beat. He is testing how far we will walk with him before we feel his will pull us further. He takes us to his own corner of questioning at the same time he is beginning to find out his purpose. That is the picture he painted with “World’s Apart.” Here, Muhareb’s voice is floating behind his instrumental presence, allowing all of his melodies to mesh together as one cohesive movement. He reminds us, “you’re here for now but not for along.” Ali Muhareb is the glue to the big questions of existentialism, allowing one to feel closure and comfort as you drift through the hardest situations. Muhareb is the soothing comfort you never thought you would be reaching for, but as you do you latch to his calm reflections and feel the instantaneous comfort that Muhareb has been searching for. 

Ali Muhareb brings a raw talent through his recognition of space and atmosphere. All of his ambitions are driven full force throughout every track of Existentially Wasted. The psych-pop artist exits the room with “Dumbala Dub,” a dazed instrumental with vocals lingering in the background but never coming clear of their intentions. It’s a cryptic way to depart but I wouldn’t expect anything else from Muhareb. The EP was released through Making New Enemies and is available for pay as you want on bandcamp