I have recently discovered Austin, TX native Hanna Barakat. She has released a single called “Criminal”. Barakat was born to an American mother and Lebanese father. Her passion for Arabic music and culture has directed her to spend some time in Beruit after her graduation from Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. She blends an active rock, metal, and Arab- Oriental influences all into her craft. I have had the opportunity as a Zumba® fitness instructor to become more familiar with international rhythms so I was curious about discovering Barakat’s musical art.
Barakat’s “Criminal” is nothing short of a wonderful blend of dynamic vocals, music crescendos and empowerment. It begins with catchy rock progressions that quickly build up until the first verse. The song includes mellow verses that tell the insights of the stages of being in a negative relationship- from falling in and the relief of living life after the breakup. Barakat builds it up to a spunky bridge stating that she is going to move forward with confidence, including the lyrics, “Taking notes, and turn the tables around”. The chorus expresses Barakat’s empowerment but will feel like she did wrong with the lyrics, “And when the thrill is gone, I’ll be left feeling like a criminal”. There is also a soft, yet powerful interlude in the middle of the song with some emphasis on words explaining that she needed to learn to be independent and that she was not aware that her ex was affected until later. Barakat ends the song with shredding guitar riffs and amazing vocal effects emphasizing how she will be feeling like a criminal.
Overall, I really enjoyed the song from Barakat. It is fun and really catchy yet really helpful for anyone going through an unhealthy relationship or any other unhealthy situation. Barakat’s message through the song is very relatable when it comes to having the power to move on, even though there might be guilt associated. I am looking forward to hearing work that she has released and see more ways of how she blends in more world influences with international music. Barakat truly shows that an artist can be very innovative when it comes to blending in different styles. Be sure to check out Barakat’s art and upcoming events! Also, be sure to check out her merch store and join her mailing list!