Sunday, December 07, 2008

Trilok Gurtu - Arkeology (2007) (mp3 320kbps)

You've gotta love Trilok.  Born in 1951, the son of professional musicians in Bombay.  He is trained by one of the foremost tabla masters and appears to have a promising career as a music professional when he veers off and starts playing jazz.  He listened to western fusion and world music, but had no multi-track recorder, so he started playing everything at the same time.  This man could play a western drum kit in any style and sound completely convincing.  That single instrument however, restrains the pure experience of bringing music into being.

On this record he's challenging himself and the listener yet again, but the context is pastoral, the strings playing a soft portrayal of inner peace.  And then there are times when the fury of Gurtu's talent spills over to his band mates and the whole thing starts to elevate a bit.  One reviewer accurately states:
While the chamber music resonances are clear enough, there is a fascinating composite vocabulary that emerges with many pieces steeped in a Mediterranean, quasi-folkish sound that is both rousingly danceable and emotively lyrical
Another review describes the outcome in the context of other influences:
Crossing strings and tablas with the Arke String Quartet, their stirring tunes imply Indian, Balkan and Celtic rhythms, in asymmetric time signatures that suit Gurtu right down to the last demisemiquaver.
Many years ago, I was fortunate enough to see him do his magic act, which included a metal pail of water, assorted gongs, beads, necklaces, drums of every size, including western style drumheads closely mic'd for a walloping effect. His instrumentation often includes his own voice in sacred chants of counting and rhythm.

The Arke String Quartet and Trilok have gone their separate ways, but the Italian group's MySpace proudly indicates its recent association with the restless boy from Bombay, who is already seeking new challenges and breaking new ground.  This quiet stop on his musical journey is one of the best so far.

  1. Balahto
  2. Nanda (To My Mother)
  3. Kermansah
  4. Dea
  5. Fes
  6. Taranta Suite
  7. Yoragathupaga
  8. Folded Hands
  9. Skopje
  10. Sveva

1 comment:

MPomy said...