Photo by Sung Choi
Hanni El Khatib has been on an unreal creative streak lately. Six weeks ago he released “Baby’s OK,” a power pop slab that opened with the the brilliant plea, “I was high as fuck/ I was high as fuck/ I was high as fuck/ But hear me out.” A couple weeks later Zane Lowe premiered the misleadingly nonchalant “Gonna Die Alone” on Beats 1 and two days after that came the furious, decomposing electrics of “Born Brown.” He gathered them together for the Savage Times Vol.1 EP, released it on Innovative Leisure, and then it all seemed to be done.
But a little over four weeks on and El Khatib is back with the soulful, bluesy “Miracle,” a solo outing with featuring more than voice and guitar. It’s the direct contradiction of “Gonna Die Alone,” emphatic about his continued existence rather than ambivalent towards his coming death. “It’s a miracle that I came out alive,” he sings, “I know I shoulda been put down in my place, but I survived.”
El Khatib told us that “the song was initially intended for a full band, with a string section and all, but after we tracked the demo live in the room it just felt right and I didn't wanna touch it after that. So that's how we left it." Sure, it might have added some surface majesty, but stripping it back let's the track breathe.
Listen to "Miracle" below.
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