The Fourth Light Project, the newest program of the highly acclaimed Persian/Middle Eastern/Indian electroacoustic super group Niyaz, is an immersive multi-media experience that combines live music and sacred whirling dance with interactive technologies and advanced projection and body-mapping techniques to create a dazzling visual spectacle. Niyaz, comprised of sublime vocalist and composer Azam Ali, and multi-instrumentalist and composer Loga Ramin Torkian, seamlessly blends ancient Sufi poetry and folk songs from the Middle East to India, with rich acoustic instrumentation and state-of-the-art modern electronics.
Their latest album The Fourth Light is inspired by the first female Sufi mystic and poet Rabia Al Basri, born in the 8th century in Iraq and is mixed by Damian Taylor (Bjork, The Killers, Arcade Fire). Through their work Niyaz aims to offer listeners a bridge between the East and the West – a sanctuary in the modern world of polarized ideologies, their music has garnered rave reviews from NPR, Huffington Post and MTV and has been featured in several major film and television scores, including, True Blood, Nip Tuck and Crossing Over.
There is undeniably a deep social conscience woven into the music of Niyaz. Though many of their songs are original compositions based on or inspired by ancient poetry of the great Eastern mystics, a large part of their repertoire is derived from traditional folk songs of ethnic and religious minority groups in the Middle East who have suffered great oppression. The new album features five folk songs, “Shir Ali Mardan (Song of a Warrior),” from the Bakhtiari region of Iran, “Yek Naza (A Single Glance),” from Khorassan, Iran, “Eyvallah Shahim ‘new rendition’ (Truth),” from the Alevi- Bektashi tradition in Turkey, “Sabza Ba Naz (The Triumph of Love),” and “Khuda Bowad Yaret (Divine Companion),” from Afghanistan.