ALBUM REVIEW: SOTE – Sound System Persepolis | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

Narc. Magazine Online

Reliably informed


Diagonal Records

Released: 12.07.24






On first listen the seemingly chaotic sounds and plethora of beats and noises may feel almost impenetrable. SOTE (aka Iranian musician Ata Ebtekar) has a propensity for generating maximalist, relentless sounds with peak intensity. However, as his complex computer music pummels the brain each composition, which seems random or bizarrely titled, reveals names that are generated from geographical locations in Iran and the music corresponds in synthesis to that geography.

Opening track WVTBLSSPXZAGROS for instance, relating to the Zagros mountain range, has a brutalist clang, while the polyrhythms of ADTVESSPXLUT about the salt desert Lut are as crystalline as their inspiration. Thus the inherent logic follows, dictating each set piece and vice versa. Sound System Persepolis remains a challenging listen but it’s absorbing and rewards patience.


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