Debashish Bhattacharya and Friends: Beyond the Ragasphere (Riverboat/Southbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

Debashish Bhattacharya: Reflections Remain
 Debashish Bhattacharya and Friends: Beyond the Ragasphere (Riverboat/Southbound)

The great Indian slide guitarist Debashish Bhattacharya has appeared at Elsewhere before because he not only makes hypnotic music, but that he also connects with an interesting tradition which goes back many deacdes . . . and to Hawaii.

Here -- in a disheartingly dull cover which gives no hint of its exotic contents -- he invites in some of his many international friends and fellow travellers in the musical region between East and West, people like guitarist John McLaughlin, flamenco player Adam del Monte, American jazz-funk drummer Jeff Stipe and bluegrass dobro master Jerry Douglas.

So the result is music which pays scant regard to genre and cultural divides but can be of pulse-racing intensity (Kirwani One, 5+8, Five), suggestive of the spiritual (Reflections Remain features his teenage daughter Anandi whose vocal contributions are a high point throughout) or enticingly multi-culti (Indospaniola with del Monte).

And surprisingly given the musical and emotional connections made, these guests sent their parts to Bhattacharya in Kolkata via the internet.

JD2 Pillusion is slippery Indo-jazz fusion and the closer Ode to Love is a beautiful Hawaii-cum-Calcutta meditation which, of course – because Bhattacharya plays slide – works brilliantly.

The track to start with however is the conceptual A Mystical Morning with McLaughlin which opens with ambient street sounds and gentle ripples of water before the pair and tease out an increasingly complex dialogue where Bhattacharya jangles and McLaughlin delivers fluid lines in contrast.

Two musical voices, one vision.


Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Bayarbaatar Davaasuren: The Art of Mongolian Khoomii (Arc Music)

Bayarbaatar Davaasuren: The Art of Mongolian Khoomii (Arc Music)

When I first witnessed a Mongolian throat singer some 30 years ago – and I did weirdly feel I was a witness at something beyond my comprehension – I asked someone where the feedback... > Read more

The Malawi Mouse Boys: He is #1 (Southbound)

The Malawi Mouse Boys: He is #1 (Southbound)

Their name alone sends you to You Tube to find out more about the Malawi Mouse Boys . . . and indeed that is exactly what they are. They sell mice kebabs on the roadside as a kind of... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

GUEST ARTIST STEVEN ATHANAS from Toledo, Ohio shares his outsider work

GUEST ARTIST STEVEN ATHANAS from Toledo, Ohio shares his outsider work

Having spent four decades being a singer in various bar bands, I am reinventing myself yet again – in my sixth decade on the planet – as a visual artist. Though some have... > Read more

THE FACES ANTHOLOGY (2012): A Rod's as Good as a Drink

THE FACES ANTHOLOGY (2012): A Rod's as Good as a Drink

Making records wasn't the point of the Faces – aka just “Faces” – although they delivered four albums in the five years to 1975. Certainly Rolling Stone critic Jon Landau... > Read more