Unlike the Egyptian movies, the Hollywood flicks, and the Omar Abdallat’s of the world, there’s something about Mashrou Leila that manages to supersede place and time. It’s in the realness of their lyrics. The lack of cliches. The pain, a perfect reflection of our own.

In Mashrou Leila lies randomness. A deep connection with a culture that has been “embarrassing” for decades. A love for rejects, rebels, and eccentrics. An embracing of a marginal society that lies on the parameters of our existence as Levantines, as Arabs, as humans. The life of lost kids, we who care not for the restricting realities of the traditional ideologies attempting to overtake us. Suffocated, restricted, enraged.


“El Hal Romancy” is their latest song. I can’t stop listening to it. It is so good I want to burst into tears from emotion.

“Tzawajni o eqra2 Engles fi sareeri”? Engles? Who mentions philosophers in lyrics? I am blown away.

Here are the lyrics:

الحال رومانسي

ﻣﺶ ﻋﺎﺭﻑ ﺇﻥ ﻛﻨﺖ ﺭﺟﻞ ﺃﻡ ﻣﺼﺮﻑ ﺁﻟﻲ

ﺑﺲ ﺍﻷﺟﺎﺭ ﻳﺎ ﺧﻴﻲ ﺻﺎﻳﺮ ﺳﻮﺑﺮ ﻏﺎﻟﻲ

ﺗﺰﻭﺟﻨﻲ ﻭﺁﻗﺮﺃ ﺃﻧﺠﻠﺰ في ﺳﺮﻳﺮﻱ

ﺇﺫﺑﺢ الخروف ﻗﺴﻢ ﻭﺯﻉ عالجيري

الحل ﺭﻭﻣﺎﻧﺴﻲ ﺑﺲ ﻣﺶ ﻏﻠﻂ

ﺣﺒﻚ ﻛﺴﺮﺓ ﺍﻟﻘﻄﺎﻉ الخاص ﺑﺲ ﻣﺶ ﻏﻠﻂ

ﺯﻓﻮﺍ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﻭﺱ ﺯﻓﻮﻫﺎ