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    Khan, Bismillah – “Shehnai Nawaz ” – [EMI (India)]

    Bismillah Khan was laid to rest August 2006 year, his work on the shehnai
    remains lively and remarkable…he took those four reeds and squeezed
    seven decades out of them. While listening to these two ragas one is
    impressed by the shehnai’s abilty to waver, as if to falter…not unlike
    someone hitting the pitch shifter on the turntable, but then quickly
    re-align itself right back in tune. These deft drops done repeatedly
    show the mastery…and remind me of a bird taking off. The first raga,
    “Bhupal-Todi” keeps things at a managed pace, drone-infused but again
    full of more flight than that. On the other face, that for the night,
    “Bageshree” showcases a more impulsive set of playing, at times it
    seems Khan splits into two or three other players…forces are joined
    but it is more fun to imagine Khan incarnate and reincarnating on the
    spot. and some lightning deviations zap your breath away. Lengthy tracks
    but time just flies with these on…perhaps that is the math underneath
    creating some sort of audio illusion? Anyways the shehnai, like the
    theremin and the erhu, has the ability to connot the human voice,
    especially a voice overcome with feeling…to the point of it becoming
    something else. Gods cast mortals into statues and trees, why not
    musical intruments as well. Viva Bismillah Khan, enjoy these two
    tremendous pieces played with devotion, and check out
    http://www.deccanherald.com/deccanherald/aug10/at1.asp

    -Thurston Hunger

  • Reviewed by Thurston Hunger on March 8, 2007 at 7:01 pm
  • Filed as 12-inch,International
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