After it was known that there was coming a peace treaty between Israel and the PLO, Muslimgauze decided to record a completely new album, to replace the announced release 'Shekel Of Israeli Occupation' (originally dedicated to Yasser Arafat) by 'Betrayal'. Never a title was more clearer then this one. It shows how little love is left for the PLO and it will drive many more Palestinians in the arms of the more extreme organizations such as Hamas and Hezbollah.
'Betrayal' (dedicated to a United Arab Response) shows the power of Muslimgauze: events in Middle East inspire him to combine eastern percussion and western technology and show the world where he stands: on the side of the oppressed Palestinians. Through subtle beauty and apparent easiness, aggression comes out of Muslimgauze. 'Betrayal' is no different. Their laid-back approach should be noted by those interested in ambient or chill out music.
Front cover image of this CD shows Arafat and Rabin shaking hands. Betrayal. Need we say more?
Press release from Staalplaat.
The following appeared on Concept.
After having accentuated his resonant researches of a more traditional music, Bryn Jones comes back with an album composed of samples and almost-hypnotic loops, to particularly intoxicating effect. Pieces seem to make up part of some trance like narcotic, gradually your mind detaches itself from your body. Waving, it frees itself in diaphanous sound, to melt in the ethereal spaces of voluptuous pleasure. All seems of little importance, the Sun is within reach of your hand and your breath makes the light of the stars vibrate. The sweetness of the perfumes takes you to where the righteous and faithful live, here the reality stops and the fantasy begins... silken ambience and psychotropic journeys. A completely alluring success for the initiated.
review by Cyrille Sottile
translation by T @ The Edge with the use of Power Translator
The following appears in All Music Guide.
The first Muslimgauze release after the initial peace agreement between Israel and the PLO in late 1993, Betrayal has a memorable cover featuring the handshake between Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, with its title boldly, simply printed on it. The album dedication itself is "to a united Arab response," so expecting the album, recorded mere days after the handshake, to be a new explosion of musical anger would be the logical conclusion. As it happens, though, Betrayal isn't that far removed from Veiled Sisters; while not as minimalist, if not repetitive, as that particular release, Betrayal relies on the same basic tools of gentle, steady electronic percussion and low-level bass and keyboard shadings. The most immediate changes lie with the various vocal samples on some of the tracks; while not immediately intelligible per se, you get scraps and hints from them, expressing a range of negative emotions regarding the initial peace pact. At the same time, often a subtle but nonetheless effective sense of omen and dire warning lurks throughout the music; the use of bass tones in particular doesn't seem that far removed from what Massive Attack eventually came up with years later on Mezzanine. Also, as with Veiled Sisters, even the most low-key of changes has a large effect in context, such as the metallic clattering added to the electronic pulsing on the second "Nabius." Overall, the feeling is meditative; this is the kind of music you could put on for a quiet moment, but it's not exactly easy listening in any sense of the word.
review by Ned Raggett
All Music Guide
The following appeared in Rate Your Music.
This album stands out from the rest of Muslimgauze's vast discography. There is a lesser focus on the Middle Eastern vibe, and the tribal ambient sound is replaced with stripped down ambient techno. For what it's trying to achieve, it works well, but it's not one of his most memorable releases. Still, I can't really find a major flaw in this guy's music, no matter how deep I dig into his releases. Perfect music for working, reading, studying.
reviewed by KombinoHun
Rate Your Music (May 4, 2020)
November 4, 2020