Maurice Louca’s Elephantine world premiere in Stockholm

Concert date: 28 Feb 2019, 8.30pm
Venue: Fylkingen

Louca revels in the sound clash, stacking up riffs and polyrhythms, strafing it all with avant jazz blowing… The tension between freedom and form is captivating.” The Wire

Big but clever with it, Elephantine is a dazzling, trance-like triumph” **** MOJO

Following a collaboration in Stockholm in August 2017, and the ensuing recording and release of Elephantine, Maurice Louca returns to the Swedish capital to present the live world premiere of his third album in the company of eight outstanding musicians from Sweden, Turkey, Denmark and Italy.

On Elephantine, his new Northern Spy/Sub Rosa album released 1 Feb 2019, Cairo-based Maurice Louca guides a large ensemble through a panoramic 38-minute odyssey, which he describes as his most ambitious project yet.


Elephantine album release tour

(more dates to be announced soon)
28 February | Fylkingen, Stockholm
1 March | Alice, Copenhagen
30 March | REWIRE Festival, The Hague
5 April | Banlieues Bleues, Paris
6 April | BRDCST Festival, Brussels
4 July | Roskilde Festival, Denmark

Elephantine Band line up

Tommaso Cappellato, Drums/Percussions
Ozun Usta, Drums/Percussions
Rosa Brunello, bass (on the album Elsa Bergman)
Mattias Stahl, Vibraphone (on the album Pasquale Mirra)
Piero Bittolo (Baritone Sax/Alto Sax/Bass Flute)
Daniel Gahrton, Alto Sax (on the album Anna Högberg)
Rasmus Kjærgård Lund (Tuba)
Isak Hedtjärn (Clarinet/Bass Clarinet)
Maurice Louca (Guitar/Piano)

One of the most gifted, prolific and adventurous figures on Egypt’s thriving experimental arts scene, Louca has in recent years garnered a global reputation through two previous solo albums and an expanding, evolving lineup of genre-defying collaborations. The Wire called his 2014 sophomore solo effort, Salute the Parrot, “remarkable music—dense, driven and splashed with colour.” In 2017, the self-titled debut by Lekhfa, the trio of Louca and vocalists Maryam Saleh and Tamer Abu Ghazaleh, was praised as an “edgy triumph” in The Guardian and picked by BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction as one of the very best 12 albums of 2017.For Louca, 36, Elephantine serves as both the pinnacle of his wide-ranging experience and a bold next step in his development as a composer, arranger and bandleader. “There was a blessed thing about the process of making this record,” Louca says of the sessions, held August 2017 in Stockholm and featuring the leader on guitar and piano. “The dynamic between us musically but also as people …What these musicians delivered was really more than I could ask for, Everyone played their hearts out on this record.

The music—from its pensive lulls through its stretches of hard-grooving hypnosis and moments of avant-jazz catharsis—testifies to that rapport. Best absorbed as a continuous performance, Elephantine’s six individually named tracks nonetheless present striking self-contained landscapes.


About the album

Elephantine was released on Vinyl (via Sub Rosa), CD & digital streaming/download (Northern Spy). It was recorded in Stockholm in August 2017 at Stureparken Studios by Ronny Lahti, mixed by Adham Zidan and mastered by Heba Kadry.

As well as the musicians in the band line up, the record also features Nadah El Shazly on vocals, Ayman Asfour on violin and Natik Awayez on oud.

Executive producer: Sarah El Miniawy, with support from Musikverket for the collaboration in August 2017, and Stockholms stad for the concert on 28 Feb 2019.