Variously described by reviewers as “trippy”, “dreamy”, “cinematic”, “stylishly hip” and “deeply exotic”, award winning Turkish Canadian world music group Minor Empire has racked up a lengthy list of plaudits for its seamless blend of Turkish traditional music and modern sounds. Its debut album, Second Nature, earned it a Canadian Folk Music Award for World Group of the Year, an Indie Music Award for Favourite World Artist of the Year, a nomination for the About.com World Music Readers Choice Award and number one spot on the Canadian World music radio charts.
Exclaim praised the debut album for its “slinky, duby, knotty Turkish rhythms”. Le Devoir called the sound “refined” and said “Ozman weaves a most beautiful music from her Turkish roots”. Songlines praised “Ozman’s pure and sinuous vocals” and the “percussion that simmers with delicious intensity”. CBC Radio said “the album marked an important way forward for Turkish and world music”.
Minor Empire’s sound is defined by the dreamy vocals of Ozgu Ozman, which soar above an ambient bed of organic instrumentation to create the airy, atmospheric vibe. Led by guitarist Ozan Boz, band features some of Canada’s finest musicians; Michael Occhipinti on guitar, Chris Gartner on bass, Ben Riley on drums and Patrick Graham on percussion.
The band has showcased its captivating blend of ethereal vocals and trance-y, trip hop inspired arrangements at prominent venues such as Yoshi’s in San Francisco, National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Banff Centre for the Arts, Harbourfront Centre in Toronto, Hillside Festival, Luminato Festival, Sunfest, Vancouver Folk Music Festival, Calgary Folk Music Festival, JAZZ.FM91 World Music Festival and Musikfest. Minor Empire was also featured on Identities, award winning documentary series on Jazz FM.
Second Nature was released in Turkey, in 2014 to a critical acclaim. It was called “Canadian Turkish masterpiece”. The group has been featured in countless newspapers and art magazines, and made numerous TV appearances and performed live on national TV and radio, including CNN Turk’s Late Night show and TRT National.
New release “Uprooted” was recently launched through sold-out shows in Turkey. Canada/US launch will follow in October 2017.