by Rasa


Product Details

Release Date: 09/02/2003
Label: New Earth Records
UPC: 0714266240123
catalogNumber: 2401

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4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
"Shelter", Rasa’s third recording, finds them with a new label, more contemporary beats, and a wider range of approaches to their distinctive fusion music. Hans Christian and Girish Gambhira weave exotic instrumental tapestries on cello, sarangi, nyckelharpa, sitara, bass, usu, frame drums, shakers, synthesizers, tablas and mridangam as Kim Waters’ light, mellow voice floats above them, singing devotional songs derived from the Indian tradition of Vaishnava. For only three musicians, even with overdubbing on multiple tracks, this incarnation of Rasa has a rich intensity of sound. Some of the tracks on “Shelter” are truly striking, such as the deep and moving “Gauranga Karuna”, the ever-developing “Jaya Radha”, and “Narada Muni, with its explorations of harmonic complexity and cool duets for strings (I’m betting it’s the Indian sarangi and Scandinavian nyckelharpa playing, but they blend so well it’s hard to tell!). “Arunodaya” is another interesting one--a bouncy, cheerful piece that seems to reinvent “Jiv Jago”, a track from two albums ago, albeit in another key. The other selections, however, seem to revert back to Rasa’s debut album in a different way--despite the addition of more contemporary backup techniques, the compositions lack that satisfying sense of harmonic and textural progression developed in the group’s second recording, “Union”. To be fair, this may be by design, since the music is designed to be a meditational aid, but when listening to songs that are so lushly and interestingly textured, I suppose I find more inspiration in being musically moved than musically lulled. If you like the work of Rasa, you may also enjoy another world fusion group with similar qualities: Vas, with singer/hammered-dulcimer player Azam Ali and percussionist Greg Ellis.