Archive for the ‘Hindi’ Category
After being left in anticipation for what’s to come following Thursday’s Peekaboo performance, the moment arrived when Karsh Kale delivered his offerings for Coke Studio. My word, we are still struggling to pick up our jaws up off of the floor.
For those that are hearing the name Karsh Kale for the first time, the musician, producer and composer was raised in West Bromwich, England and now resides in Brooklyn, New York. With six solo albums under his discography, he can be best known for one of the seven members of Tabla Beat Science who contributed to quite possibly, one of the greatest Asian Fusion Underground albums ever: Tabla Matrix. Himself a percussionist with emphasis on his love for the tabla and electric tabla, Kale has really pioneered the Electronic fusion with South Asian influence so supremely well and spearheaded the Asian Fusion scene for the past decade.
Now into the sixth episode of Coke Studio @ MTV S2, it would take some feat to better such exemplary efforts from the likes of Nitin Sawhney, Ehsaan + Loy, Clinton Cerejo, Amit Trivedi and Hitesh Sonik but we’re fairly sure, this is the pinnacle of the season so far. Implementing his Asian Underground influence within each performance, it was pretty hard not to showcase each and every offering within the episode.
Karsh Kale feat Salim Merchant + Sabir Khan – Kajar Bin Kare
Paying homage to the late, great, supreme sarangi musician and vocalist Ustad Sultan Khan, Karsh Kale delivers something quite unique and impeccable that has simply left us in awe. Originally composed with Ust. Sultan Khan, Salim Merchant and Kale felt that the Coke Studio platform was the perfect method to deliver such a spine tingling performance and fittingly, Ust. Sultan Khan’s son Sabir Khan takes centrestage to deliver such a beautiful, emotional and spellbinding performance via the sarangi. Arranged to perfection, the double-time snares, rousing tabla percussion and breathtaking strings really lift this emotional number to a place that leaves one almost speechless. One of, if not, the best performance ever seen on Coke Studio by a long shot respectably leaving something behind that Ust. Sultan Khan would be proud of.
Karsh Kale feat Shilpa Rao + Warren Mendosa – Hallelujah
Mixing elements of personal experiences into the Leonard Cohen classic Hallelujah, Karsh takes the helm to vocal the arrangement alongside songstress Shilpa Rao who infuses elements of Jhoola, a childhood song of hers to enhance this relatable song about pain and glory of love. Keeping the composition the same as previously heard, the track is based on Warren Mendosa’s Ode to A Sunny Day arrangement which seems to fit so well with lyrics of Hallelujah and with Mendosa delivering a splendid guitar solo, the performance is just short of breathtaking.
Karsh Kale feat Shruti Pathak, Benny Dayal + Mandeep Sethi – Glorious
Having showcased their efforts previously in the episode, Karsh enlists the talents of Benny Dayal and Mandeep Sethi once again to perform alongside multi-lingual sweet vocalist Shruti Pathak. Based on an 88 BPM drum and bass groove, the often key changing performance features sweeping flute and melodic piano pieces, we were often asking ourselves the need for incorporating Sethi on such a moving, emotional arrangement.
Karsh Kale feat Shilpa Rao, Shruti Pathak, Monali Thakur + Apeksha Dandekar – Shedding Skin
You would think trying to arrange four great female vocalists would be a feat for anybody but Kale makes lighwork of it. Incorporating the sounds of the dholak, Shredding Light is a song that talks about the transformation of a young female’s life and the smooth transitional arrangement applied seems to gel this performance so elegantly well. Focusing again around the flute, Mendosa’s raw electric guitar is fluttered throughout with the four vocalists providing angelic, stellar performances.
Karsh Kale feat Monali Thakur – Dil Cheez
It’s amazing how emotive the sarangi can be and Kale utilises it to perfect effect to reconstruct the classic Dil Cheez from the 1981 film Umrao Jaan. A fitting reinterpretation of the Asha Bhosle original with vocalist Monali Thakur executing her versatility by switching from Hindi to English so easily well. Karsh Kale provides an easy-to-listen-to arrangement with the sound of his tabla accompanying with Ravi Chary’s enchanting sitar.
Karsh Kale Feat. Apeksha Dandekar, Benny Dayal + Mandeep Sethi – Peekaboo (Coke Studio @ MTV India Session)
Since we found out that the Karsh Kale Collectiv were set to appear on the ever improving second season of Coke Studio @ MTV our eyes have been glued onto YouTube for a preview of what’s to come but we’ve been spoiled already since Peekaboo surfaced a few hours ago. Featuring the uber-talents including London songstress Apeksha Dandekar, vocalist Benny Dayal and Californian rapper Mandeep Sethi, Karsh Kale smothers an emotive, smooth and slick directed composition on a Ustaad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan classic, Naina More Taras Rahe (here sung in Raag Sindh Bhairavi). Standing in the shadow of the original, Kale adopts the sitar and flute to emulate the emotions of separation and longing written within the lyrics and flips the direction 360 degrees mixing up the second half of the arrangement including a signature Sethi rap, notable vocals (in English) from Benny Dayal and quite strikingly, an excellent performance by Apeksha Dandekar.
We’ll be reviewing the upcoming episode when it comes online so be sure to check back regularly…
Spoiled for the last few weeks, Coke Studio turn West towards the United Kingdom and choose Rochester born Nitin Sawhney to beacon this week’s live performances. Providing 6 composition’s which include for the majority London singer Nicki Wells, Mercury Prize nominee Sawhney uses his own personal life experiences to influence the music drawn into this episode.
Whilst the episode did not provide us with waves of amazement, Vachan is a stormy, rock number that really develops into its own with vocalist Mahesh Vinayakram given full freedom to apply his own learned South Indian Karnatik vocal style. Beginning with a myriad of rhythmic variations and the rare morsing instrument, Sawhney utilises the electric guitar to elevate the strong, improvised vocals by Vinayakram accompanied with backing vocals by Nicki Wells and Samidha Joglekar. With controlled percussion, the performance really accelerates into 4th gear midway through and is let to volcanically explode providing a real sense of deep colour and structure to the whole arrangement.
Satyamev Jayate (English: Truth Alone Prevails) is a show that was premiered in May of this year and is anchored by Bollywood actor Aamir Khan. Highlighting issues such as honor killings, dowry, female foeticides and child sexual abuse, the format has been widely appreciated and has received merit and praise for putting these often neglected issues to the forefront. The emotional, hard-hitting nature of the talk show really strikes a chord with the viewers and the effort from producer Khan must be commended for providing a window of truth for the youth of India.
The most recent episode Every Drop Counts discussed the importance of water in our lives and how likely the occurrence of water supply running out will be. With every day passing, this is becoming an eventuality with ‘water-wars’ already existing throughout the world.
Accompanied with each show is a freely downloadable song which relates to the topic of the show, this week sung by the excellent Sukhwinder Singh. Jal Na Jaye Jal was written by Munna Dhiman who expertly crafts deep, emotional lyrics for the track which was composed by Ram Sampath who incorporates the sounds of the saxophone, clarinet and the Carnatic mridangam so seamlessly well.