The new EsRAP album bears the poetic title “Mamafih”, an old Turkish word for “however” and “nevertheless”, and thus conveys the history and current situation of the Austro-Turkish brother and sister on several levels. Despite all the adversities they faced as children of guest workers and representatives of the third generation, such as hatred of foreigners and a structurally racist school system, they have managed to make themselves heard beyond the borders of their homeland.
Where do fears and feelings of loneliness come from? Mamafih has become more personal and contains many passages and songs in Turkish. The beats are more house and trap oriented and exude an intense club feeling. All in all, “Mamafih” is characterised by great musicality; in the fusion of modern beats with arabesque, EsRAP definitely reach the next level with Testa. Through their releases and concerts in recent years, EsRAP have developed into a role model of Austrian resistant pop art with a migrant background and enjoy corresponding media attention.
Growing up in the old Viennese working-class district of Ottakring, the siblings Esra and Enes Özmen use hip hop as a medium to be heard and to gain recognition for their own experience with all its conflicts. Together they form the duo EsRAP and their mixed German/Turkish lyrics deal with questions of identity, being foreign in their own country as children of the third generation, the necessity of rebellion experienced on their own bodies, rap as resistance and also being a woman in the male-dominated hip-hop world. In contrast to the usual division of roles in this, Esra contributes the hard and fast rhymes, while her brother Enes with his sensitive voice takes over the more melodic vocal parts. Musically EsRAP find inspiration in the Turkish oriental genre Arabesque, which they like to combine with modern beats.
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