“Ô, Rose Noire d’Iran/ La Déclamation” (‘O, Rose Noire d’Iran/ The Declamation’) is an oriental flavored poetic project by poet and spoken word artist AKA Louis, and sound designer Han Sino. Two monikers, for the same creative person who is an illustrator, book author, poet, filmmaker and musician, among many other artistic things. This latest project is available in both audio and video formats. It is accompanied by a booklet of 10 poetic texts, in its original French language, as well as English translations. I would highly recommend watching the video version if you’re English speaking, as it has subtitles in real time. At its origin, ‘Ô, Rose Noire d’Iran’ is a book by AKA Louis, which contains a collection of poetry on drunkenness, beauty, inner voyage, brotherhood beyond color and horizons, and the discovering of the soul and the self. AKA Louis has so far completed 18 books, while his alter ego Han Sino hasn’t on an album for over a year now, breaking away from his usual rhythm.
This is mainly due to the fact that AKA Louis, has been working on various projects, including writing books and poetry, painting, sketching, and pushing forward his professional ambition of becoming a contemporary painter of abstract and colorful expressionism.
The culture of poetic drunkenness, from the orient, Asia, Iran, India, China and Pakistan, has left an impression on AKA Louis, an apparently enriched him substantially in terms of human experience. In fact he brings many of those flavors, moods, and instrumental elements into the soundscapes that support and embellish the spoken word poetry on “Ô, Rose Noire d’Iran/ La Déclamation”.
As for the poetry itself, AKA Louis makes a point of not trying to imitate the styles of classic Persian poetry by the greats, but instead pays homage to them, within his own original approach and style. “I admire them, and give them acknowledgement and gratitude for the beautiful gift they give to humanity, through their work,” states AKA Louis. “To know our own soul through the poetic metaphors of life’s pleasures, is an authentic way to know how to fully enjoy and live life.”
Instances of the poetic nuances of “Ô, Rose Noire d’Iran/ La Déclamation” is based on the Dervish, which in Islam can sometimes refer broadly to members of the Sufi fraternity (tariqah), or more narrowly to a religious mendicant, who chooses or accepts material poverty. It is this latter instance that particularly intrigues AKA Louis’ intellectual curiosity.
AKA Louis makes it clear that in his poetry, Dervish does not ever refer to the Whirling Dervishes, which many of us may be familiar with. He also states that he has a strong affinity to the Persian culture, having had many Persian friends and contact with their communities, as well as having been introduced to artists such as Omar Khayyam, Hafiz, and Saadi.
“The Iranian traditions and culture, the Persian meals, and sense of friendship, sharing, and art of living, as well as the poetry of drunkenness is also the opportunity to discover another way to love and to elevate one’s soul,” concludes AKA Louis.
Taken into account all of the above we can conclude that of “Ô, Rose Noire d’Iran/ La Déclamation” is a work inspired by the revisited theme of the black rose, the beauty, the inner pilgrimage, but also, the praise of the heart and the elevation of the soul. The culture of poetic drunkenness, the dervishes, orient, and Asia. It is an eclectic and challenging audiovisual work, very minimalistic in its approach.
The two Han Sino soundscapes – “La Rose Noire d’Iran Thème” which introduces the work, and “Le Métronome Asymétrique” which concludes the work, are stripped down to basic eastern elements and metronome percussion.
In the middle we have the spoken word substance of “Ô, Rose Noire d’Iran – La Déclamation”, narrated by AKA Louis, which can be thoroughly appreciated in the YouTube video for English speakers. The innovative and creative spoken word poet plucks from his experiences and learnings, and emerges with a project of emotionally impacting and brilliantly written poems and music that reflect the culture and leanings of a generation that AKA Louis may be literally and physically far removed from, but is spiritually and eternally, totally in sync with.
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