Two weeks ago Milan-based DJ Kharfi released his single “Marrakech Express,” a teaser single which quickly gained traction from fans and listeners alike. The song even led the young Moroccan-Italian DJ to becoming the cover boy of Fresh Finds: Basement, a Spotify playlist with over 82 million monthly listeners that features “the best of independent EDM releases.”
Following the release of “Marrakech Express,” Kharfi shared a video about Moroccan-Italian DJs in Italy listening to the song for the first time and saying what they felt and envisioned. Kharfi interviewed Achraf, Mehdi and Yasmina, three Italo-Moroccan duals like himself, and they explained “how it feels to be in the middle of two different cultures, appreciating both of them and bringing them into [their] daily life.”
The post translates from Italian to English: “Living in the middle of two very different cultures is lucky. Having two different points of view can help us but it can often create that feeling of not feeling enough for where we live or where we come from. Balance is found with time, with awareness and the ability to make those around us understand where we come from.”
Kharfi has recently taken hold in the most famous livestreams in Italy, such as the European LineCheck showcase, where he performed at the end of November offering a DJ set with only unreleased songs. He’s definitely been making moves as one of the youngest DJs in the Italian EDM scene, and now he’s released his first international EP to celebrate his 24th birthday! This EP is properly entitled “24” and features four songs and two guest artists, A-21 and Mariami.
The first track “Body” featuring A-21 is a flirtatious bedroom house tune with a sensual sample singing “body on mine.” It takes you into a little daydream land for a few minutes. “Body” may have some influence by Baths, master of effervescent fantasy soundscapes, which take on a majority of the vibes in this track.
Next is “Been Lying” featuring Mariami. The drop has more of a solo vibing feel, like when you’re dancing in the club by yourself; a little somber, but totally feeling it. The song is about wanting a love to work out, but the other person has been lying about their intentions or who they really are. With building energy from verse to chorus through the end, and layers of echoey vocals over warm, uptempo beats, the track really grows on you more and more with every listen.
Kharfi is such a gem because the rich influences from both his cultures are so evident in his music. He samples Moroccan instruments and grooves and features Italian singers on his tracks to create a truly unique sound that only Kharfi could embody!
In “Marrakech Express” there’s a clear homage to the city of the title, a melodic sitar groove that picks up after the first minute and loops to the end. It’s not only catchy, but uplifting and super charged with a driven energy. It pairs well with the house beat and synth samples; a total jam. It gives listeners a moment of pleasant relaxation and meditation, while feeling the attachment to Kharfi’s homeland, Morocco.
The short-but-sweet EP closes out with a feel-good upbeat banger! “Toxic Friend” is Kharfi‘s personal gift to us for when our friends stab us in the back. Just bump this tune on the speakers and dance away all the feels! When you get lost in the vibey trance, it’s as if the hurt simply washes off your shoulders.
“24” is available now available for streaming! Happy birthday, Kharfi!! Congrats on the accomplishment, and cheers to another bright year ahead of you.