What's behind Final Veil?
The band will perform April 17 at Mojo's with Moon Belly Dance Studio.
When Final Veil lead singer Cora Camille was a teenager, she inherited her mother's Egyptian record collection and started taking belly-dancing classes. "I listened to them, and I really liked the music," Camille said. "It's the music itself that actually got me interested in belly dancing."
Final Veil is a four-piece band out of St. Louis that fuses Egyptian and Middle Eastern music with electronic dance music. Its unique sound stems from Camille's background in world music and dance.
While studying as a broadcast journalism student at MU, she hosted a world music program on KCOU/88.1 FM and started teaching belly-dancing classes to make money. After that, Camille realized her love for teaching and graduated with a degree in education and a minor in journalism education.
Although Camille has always had an affinity for world music, she has only been playing music for eight years. She can play several different instruments, including the guitar and the oud, a Middle Eastern pear-shaped instrument.
Camille formed Final Veil in 2005 with three other members. Since its inception, Final Veil has changed a lot musically.
"We started as a Middle Eastern orchestral band, and we played all traditional Egyptian music," Camille said. "We were kind of like an Egyptian cover band, but nobody would know the covers we played."
As the band developed, she started writing her own music and mixing with electronic music.
"I worked with some DJs, and now it's evolved to the point where we have a four-piece band that mixes the Egyptian, Middle Eastern orchestral sound with western, club music," Camille said.
After its musical style began to take shape, Final Veil released its self-titled debut in October on Revealed Records. Although its Middle Eastern roots are obvious, its less-than-obvious influences come from all over the place.
"I've really been exposed to a lot of different kinds of music. My influences would honestly be everything from electronic music to African to jazz to heavy metal," Camille said.
Final Veil's name is just as Middle Eastern as its musical roots. The name comes from the Christian biblical story of the dance of the seven veils. The story is about a dance performed for King Herod in which seven veils are removed one at a time.
"The final veil is the one that finally revealed the dancer," Camille said. "It's a fitting name, not to be literally exposing your body, but more the idea of exposing what's in your mind and in your heart."
Final Veil will play April 17 at Mojo's. The show will be a collaborative effort between Final Veil and dancers from Moon Belly Dance Studio. Kandice Grossman, founder of Moon Belly Dance studio, is one of Camille's former students.