Mahdyar could easily be the best kept secret you’ve never heard of until now.
Every step of his journey has been unique and unparalleled. Mahdyar’s musical career began where most other artists journey would normally culminate: when Noisey described him as being “Persian HipHop’s most iconic producer” they may have been right but they were just referring to the first stage of his vision.
Helping to shape Persian HipHop culture and establishing a number of artists he produced for as major players in the scene with massive dedicated fan bases was just the first act in Mahdyar’s symphony.
After leaving his home country of Iran in 2009 due to complications arising from the legality of working as a musician in an Islamic Republic, Mahdyar has continued to evolve as an artist to collaborate with a diverse pool of international artists such as Birdy Nam Nam and Kool G Rap as well as providing the score to several award-winning film projects including the 2009 Cannes Special Jury Award winning “No One Knows About Persian Cats” alongside another exciting new electronic artist and friend Ash Koosha (Ninja Tune)
Mahdyar’s contribution to shaping the sound of Persian HipHop can perhaps be best seen in his role in the production of Hichkas’ 2005 ‘Jangale Asfalt (Asphlat Jungle)’ debut LP, which is to this day one of the highest selling Farsi language releases. Mahdyar’s influence could be likened to Quincy Jones’ influence on Michael Jackson’s studio albums. The ‘Jangale Asfalt (Asphalt Jungle)’ LP was a major benchmark not only in terms of mainstream success but it also served to define Persian HipHop in an uncompromising way that didn’t just garner respect, it demanded it.
Mahdyar’s masterful fusion of Western modern music and traditional Persian motifs was genuinely unprecedented and set the Iranian musical world and any pre existing framework contained within it on fire. However this also meant that Mahdyar and many of the artists he worked with soon began to feel the heat in the form of government clamp downs, from artists being arrested to studios being raided. Far from becoming discouraged, these events only served to inspire Mahdyar to push forward harder and further in developing his unique sound which was also beginning to evolve and cross musical boundaries.