Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Fluid and Infiniti

Two great albums from the Indian sub-continent, one from Rahman's flautist, Naveen and the other by Salman Ahmad - lead guitarist of Junoon

Fluid (Naveen)
A must hear for any Rahman fan - no offence meant but every piece in this album has a distinct rahmantic feel - well of course, he has spent nearly 10-12 years in Rahman's company. But at the same time, Naveen the brilliant flautist is remarkable in each track on this album.

1) Fluid - the track is a fast one, an apt start for this album with Naveen's flute fitting perfectly between the other orchestration. Drums and bongos make part of the orchestration on this track.

2) Bombay Theme - Well, we all know this one ...we have heard this and so has every one else in the world, I guess. But what we didn't hear is the version in this album. Naveen gives a rousing start to this song - in fact for the first 2:25 minutes of the track, you wonder, why its called Bombay Theme - not that you don't enjoy the music but then wheres what you are waiting for ?
2:26 and the ever familiar music starts ..Amazing is the word - the remaining part is also modified with vocals and other instruments and it all fits perfectly. Well, we all know this song ...I end how I started

3) Mohana - Excellent orchestration again - folks this album is not just about the Flute, believe me, its the orchestration too. Since I just have the mp3 right now (will get the CD tomorrow), I don't know who the arranger is. Diverted from the point - This track is a beautiful classical composition with the mridangam, veena and guitar all in perfect ensemble - did I forget something, oh yes - the Flute. Divine and Sublime. Probably my pick from this album.

4) Chennai Rain - Celebrating rain in Chennai ? Maybe - I don't know the context p but all i know is that this track is a nice rythmic one with fast and perfect dance beats.

5) Jiya Jale - A rendition of the classic 'Jiya Jale' song from Dil Se. Nice guitar strumming in the background. Good one.

6) First Light - A soft number - kind of has a Jazz flavour to it with a nice rythm overall.

7) Symphony - Again a soft number - by this time, you start wondering whether this guy has anything left to achieve in the art of playing the flute. I guess, not.

8) You and I - And you thought that the best of the album was done ? Wait till you hear this one. Brilliant guitaring, vocals, flute and then the lyrics, the main song itself sung by kids I guess - 2:46 when the kids start singing in their cute little voices :-). And at 3:43, the song breaks free into another zone - Amazing one this ....

9) Essence - A fitting end to the album, a soft one again with great orchestration consisiting of the tabla, sarod, mridangam and a lot of other instruments. A trifle long though.

You rock Naveen and so does your album ...

Infinite (Salman Ahmad)
Not writing a detailed review of this one since this is an old one (nearly a year now) . Salman Ahmad for those who are not aware is the lead guitarist and I guess the founder of 'Junoon', one of the most well known bands from Pakistan.

Great guitaring, great percussion and some great vocals in this one.

My picks
Natchoon Gi, Ghoom Tana (original and remix), Do Dil, Al-vida, Tu Lung Ja

Who wins out of the two albums mentioned above ?????
The winner at the end of the day is music - and all music fans like me - across the globe