Nawa Recordings announces the release of The Dwarfs of East Agouza’s debut album and co-headline EU tour with Maurice Louca

Dwarfs3_©Maged_Nader_72dpiWorldwide album release: 29 April 2016
European tour dates: 28 January – 14 February 2016 (Germany, Sweden, Belgium, France, Netherlands and Switzerland)

Nawa Recordings are proud to announce the release of Bes, the debut album by The Dwarfs of East Agouza and their upcoming co-headline European tour with Maurice Louca and Sublime Frequencies DJ-sets by Alan Bishop from 28 January to 14 February 2016.

The Dwarfs of East Agouza is a trio from Cairo, Egypt, featuring Maurice Louca (Alif, Bikya), Sam Shalabi (Land of Kush, Shalabi Effect) and Alan Bishop (Sun City Girls, The Invisible Hands, Alvarius B.).


Born during 2012 when the three were living in the same apartment building in Cairo’s Agouza district, the trio’s instrumental improvisation-based explorations are propelled by Louca’s North African percussion loops and shimmering keys, Shalabi’s West African tinged free jazz guitar and grounded by Bishop’s driving Krautrock-style acoustic bass.

Following many a late night jam session, the band recorded hours of material during a three-day studio run in April 2014. After compiling and mixing the album in Montreal’s Break Glass studio in July 2015, the refined result will be released as a double-album titled Bes via Nawa Recordings (NAWA005) on 2xLP, 2xCD and DL on 29 April 2016.

Named after the Ancient Egyptian dwarf deity who was worshiped as the defender of all things good and enemy of all that is bad, Bes captures the trio on a hypnotic yet unpredictable journey. From the the lilt of four-minute ethiopian tinged Resinance to the 30-minute free-form epic Museum of Stranglers, the album skirts the outer limits of a psychedelic soundtrack to a North African road trip.

Their upcoming pre-album release tour will see the trio set-off on their first European live outings co-headlining with Maurice Louca’s trio and Sublime Frequencies DJ-sets by Alan Bishop. The tour will take in Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland and France, including Berlin’s acclaimed CTM Festival co-curated this year by Lebanon’s Rabih Beaini a.k.a Morphosis.

Following the success of his last European tour in autumn 2015 in support of his Nawa Recordings album Benhayyi Al-Baghbaghan (Salute the Parrot), Maurice Louca will hit the road again in trio with Bashar Farran (Bass Guitar) and Tommaso Cappellato (Drums).

Bes by The Dwarfs of East Agouza will be available on CD, black & limited edition coloured 12” vinyl LP and download, including Mastered for iTunes and lossless high-definition 24-bit/96kHz audio files.

The album artwork features a reproduction of an ancient Egyptian carving of the dwarf god Bes, painted by Egyptian artist Raafat Al-Kordy, designed by Iraqi-Palestinian graphic designer and illustrator Sara Sukhun.

Click here to pre-order:

28 Jan 2016 – Oceanen – Gothenburg, SE
29 Jan 2016 – Inkonst – Malmö, SE
30 Jan 2016 – CTM Festival – Berlin, DE (Maurice Louca)
31 Jan 2016 – CTM Festival – Berlin, DE (The Dwarfs of East Agouza)
02 Feb 2016 – Pantropical – Worm –  Rotterdam, NL
03 Feb 2016 – OCCII – Amsterdam, NL
04 Feb 2016 – Recyclart – Brussels, BE
05 Feb 2016 – Karlstorbahnhof – Heidelberg, DE
06 Feb 2016 – Südpol – Lucerne, CH
07 Feb 2016 – Bee Flat –  Bern, CH
08 Feb 2016 – Cave 12 – Geneva, CH
09 Feb 2016 – Instants Chavires – Paris, FR
11 Feb 2016 – Le Lieu Unique – Nantes, FR
12 Feb 2016 – Kunstencentrum BELGIE –  Hasselt, BE
13 Feb 2016 – Vera – Groningen, NL
14 Feb 2016 – Baustelle – Leipzig, DE

The Dwarfs of East Agouza – Bes
01 Baka of the Future (09:38)
02 Clean Shahin (06:58)
03 Where’s Turbo? (16:10)
04 Hungry Bears Don’t Dance (04:31)
05 Resinance (03:59)
06 Museum of Stranglers (35:01)

For more information contact: Sarah El Minawy – Simsara (

Social Media & Website Links
@nawarecordings | @dwarfseagouza | |

Notes to Editors

About Maurice Louca
Inspired by many influences, from psychedelic to Egyptian shaabi, Maurice Louca’s second album Benhayyi Al-Baghbaghan (Salute the Parrot), released on Nawa Recordings in November 2014, shattered the confines of musical and cultural labelling and was dubbed by many as a game-changer for the region’s bustling independent music scene.

Hard-hitting live renderings of this album are currently being performed by Louca on live keys and electronics, with Bashar Farran on bass and Tommaso Cappellato on drums.

Louca is an Egyptian musician and composer born in Cairo where he lives and works. As well as being the co-founder of the bands Bikya, Alif and lends his sound to numerous projects, composing for theatre, film and contemporary art.

About Sam Shalabi
Sam Shalabi is a prolific Egyptian-Canadian composer and improviser living between Montreal, Quebec and Cairo, Egypt. Beginning in punk rock in the late 70s, his work has evolved into a fusion of experimental, modern Arabic Music that incorporates traditional Arabic, shaabi, noise, classical, text, free improvisation and jazz.

He has released five solo albums, five albums with Shalabi Effect and three albums with Land Of Kush (an experimental 30 member orchestra, for which he composes).  

He has appeared on over 60 albums and toured Europe, North America and North Africa. Recent projects include the release of the sixth Shalabi Effect album, a duo album with Stefan Christoff, albums with Karkhana, Omarkestra and a tour in the eastern U.S with Alvarius B, playing solo Oud. He is currently working on his 6th solo album.

About Alan Bishop
Alan Bishop (AKA Alvarius B.) is a founding member of Seattle’s avant-garde and genre-defying Sun City Girls, whose career spanned 27 years and over fifty releases.

His work in Sun City Girls, with Richard Bishop and Charles Gocher, alone stands as a testament to his fearless exploration of the outer reaches of improvisation and composition. From their free jazz/post rock psychedelic trio roots, to sprawling radio broadcasts incorporating noise, Italian pop, and sound collage, to gorgeous outernational Arabic and Asian inspired folk music, the group maintained their singular and uncompromising path from inception. Their musical restlessness continues to resonate in the wake of the passing of Charles Gocher and their subsequent disbanding in 2007.

As founder of the Sublime Frequencies record label, Bishop has released over 100 records, introducing previously ignored musical genres from Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

And as Alvarius B., Bishop has penned hundreds of his own original folk songs in a primitive “out” style that is unlike anything that anyone else is doing now. This body of work is informed by an obsessive love of psychedelic rock, free jazz, folkloric music from beyond borders, Italian film soundtracks, and an extraordinary sense of humor.

Over much of the past five years, Bishop has been living in Cairo, composing & recording new Alvarius B. material while simultaneously establishing his own Egyptian-based band, The Invisible Hands.