Lebanese outfit sandmoon offers an original take on indie pop-rock, infusing it with subtle Middle-Eastern intonations and melancholy, and a certain timelessness. Singer-songwriter Sandra Arslanian, who initiated the project, was born in Lebanon, raised in Belgium and has Armenian roots – a contrasted blend that is perceptible in the music.
They released a first album “Home” in 2014, an EP “#IntheEnd” in 2016 and in 2018, a 3-song EP “Beirut-Berlin Session” produced by Victor Van Vugt (Nick Cave, PJ Harvey…). Sandmoon released their second full length album, “Put a Gun/Commotion” produced by Fadi Tabbal in May 2020.
In 2016, sandmoon also wrote the original soundtrack to Lebanese director, Philippe Aractingi’s feature film ‘Listen’, which received the Award for Best Soundtrack at the Lebanese Movie Awards 2017.
Sandra Arslanian has been working on a few side projects, of which "Odyssée, Ode to the City" with poet Corinne Boulad, , which has been selected in festivals in Beirut, Europe (Germany, Italy, Greece) & California, and won the Award for Best Spoken Word Poetry at the Monologues & Poetry International Film Festival.
A new full-length album, “While We Watch the Horizon Sink” is set to be released end 2022. A first single off the album, “Wake Up” was released end June.
“One of the more alluring outfits to emerge in the region over the past decade” - Cairo Scene, a leading regional online platform.
“Characterized by sophisticated orchestration and folk-infused songwriting, Middle-Eastern inspired elements supporting Arslanian's sweetly quavering voice,” - IndieShuffle.
“Arslanian herself invoking a bit of Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell with her vocal and lyrical stylings,” - RedBull Music Academy Radio.
“Each release brings slightly different colors and emotions – but always great melodies,“ - Beehype.
"The band has some thought-provoking dualities at its core, not only looking East and West culturally, but also to the past, present and future for musical inspiration" - Analogue Trash.
The Musicians /
Sandra Arslanian - vocals, keys, ukulele, rhythm guitar
Sam Wehbi - lead guitars
Georgy Flouty - bass/soundscapes
Dani Shukri - drums
Album recorded at Tunefork Studio, Beirut.
Produced by Fadi Tabbal.
ABOUT OUR LATEST SINGLE
> “Wake Up is a song about looking beyond superficiality, going to the essence of things and of yourself…’And then you heal’ ”
Produced by Marwan Tohme at Tunefork Studios in Lebanon, the song includes Arslanian on main and backing vocals, synths and keyboard; Sam Wehbi on guitar, Georgy Flouty on bass and Dani Shukri on drums. “Wake Up” is the first single taken from their forthcoming album, “While We Watch the Horizon Sink”, which will be released later this year.
> Indie music from the beating heart of the Middle East, Beirut.
"A spacey pop charmer (...) There’s an enamoring mystique throughout, elevated especially in the final minute, when gentle guitar pulsations combine with the weightless synths and Sandra Arslanian’s captivating vocal lead." - Obscure Sound
"Wake Up" is a striking track that captures your attention from the get-go, there are sun-kissed synths and a guitar line that sounds like something MGMT would write (…) Sandmoon is flying the flag for the Beirut music scene it seems, and with this new offering pushing their sound out to more people, I'm sure they're still on that upward trajectory.” – It’s All Indie
"A new reflective track, Wake Up, carried by glittering synth arpeggios and Sandra’s gentle vocals. It is a song about all that has happened in the last two years and the hope to leave everything eventually behind." - Glamglare
"The album’s first single, the slow-burning and atmospheric “Wake Up” is centered around painterly and shoegazer-like textures: twinkling synth arpeggios, slashing, reverb-drenched guitars, Arslanian’s plaintive vocals, cinematic keys paired with a soaring hook (...) the song sonically to my ears recalls shoegaze titans like Cocteau Twins and Slowdive." - Joy of Violent Movement
“Sandmoon’s music is never aggressive though at time can be intense and stormy, brewing a sultry, tempered, melancholy sensitivity. It feels like summer, but through a mood-filled filter, like something you’d see in a film. It’s impressionistic with great aesthetic." – Punk Head
Here's a non-exhaustive list of radio/tv shows we appeared on: Democracy Now with Amy Goodman - NRJ Hits TV - KZSU 90.1 with Ramzi Salti - Light FM - Radio 1 - Virgin Radio - RFI/Radio Liban - Rai 1 (Italy) - Radio Raheem (Italy) - Redbull Music Academy Radio - Dubai Eye (UAE) - Club Melodie (Belgium) - Radio 1 (Belgium) - LBC - OTV - MTV...
Here's a non-exhaustive list of venues in LEBANON: Station Beirut, Ballroom Blitz, Onomatopeia, Radio Beirut, Rock & Bach, Art Lounge, Tota, Demo, New Mezyan, Bardo, EM Chill, Dany's, Zico House, Knock on Wood, Walimat Warde,...
Events/Festivals in Lebanon: Amnesty International/Sofar Sounds - Give a Home, Sofar Sounds Beirut, Jim Beam Rocks Festival, Light Fm/Zouk Mikael Festival,Lehfed Festival, AUB Outdoors, PLUR Events, Fête de la Musique, LAU Summer Fest, ALBA Music Cycle, Poetic Licence, AUB BraveHeart Healing Harmonies,...
Venues in EUROPE: LONDON - Sofar Sounds London, St Margaret's House, Hornbeam Café, Art Pavillion,Ye Old Rose & Crown Theater - BRUSSELS - Théâtre de la Flûte Enchantée, BAO, Concert en Appartment, Rock Classic - OEYNHAUSEN/MINDEN (Germany) - Druckerei, Ameise Kulturhügel - PARIS - Pop In - STOCKHOLM - Pet Sounds
& Selected as an official SXSW 2019 artist