MTM is not a trademark of a computer company. Simply put, it's an abbreviation for the names Mahmoud (21), Takiu Allah (23) and Michael (23). Three alphabets that make a band, of musicians. The three are from Egypt, a country that's been feeding the art milieu in the Arab world ...

By Rafat Fawzi

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Published: Tue 18 May 2004, 1:49 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 12:57 AM

for quite some time. There is no female representation in MTM. Something common with Tholathy Adwaa Al Masraah. Tholathy had Samir, George and Al Daif Ahmed.

MTM came out recently with their new album that relies heavily on hip-hop and the Rap music. The trio had started the band seven years ago when they were still in college. All of them were from Alexandria, and friends to boot. They developed an interest in hip-hop after watching and hearing others play this music. The idea came: Why not make similar music, sing similar songs.

Came the first song - Awaah Washak (Watchout - Beware), which is an everyday Egyptian expression. This song was for their friends. And it was a big hit in the friend's circle, in colleges and schools. This was also encouragement enough.

Next came a song called Omy Mesfara. It was like magic and the trio sought a producer who could come with an album. But that was easier thought than done.

Takiu Allah was the spokesman for the group. He found a producer but for reasons unexplained, the contract couldn't be signed. But the trio were well known in the youth's circle in Alexandria.

Finally, it was a producer who sought them out - a man called Yasser Shaker, who asked them to sing live in concerts at the beach, especially in the north coast resorts, which attracted the crème de la creme of the Egyptian elite.

This raised hopes that the trio would find their dream producer, someone who could risk money on an unknown band. Then Nile TV hosted the trio and a producer came to fore and decided to produce their first album - Umi Mesafara.

This song is a message, a message in hip-hop, new music in the Arab world. The band doesn't rely on western music, or even western words. Each one of them a point of view to express, different ideas to convey and each one of them sings in his own manner, style.

MTM's songs have attracted lots of listeners. The band's been together through thick and thin because no one tries to dominate the others. The Alexandria magic continues to weld them into a band of brother-musicians. Period.

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