Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Dance & Electronic, World Music, Jazz, New Age
Respected dotar player and chant master Jai Uttal proves once again you don't need a highly self-conscious message or calculated vigilance to successfully mix music of East and West. Uttal approaches his unique blend of ja... more »
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Respected dotar player and chant master Jai Uttal proves once again you don't need a highly self-conscious message or calculated vigilance to successfully mix music of East and West. Uttal approaches his unique blend of jazz, Indian, and world music just as any experienced musician long familiar with his instrument would: as a jam session meant to spin a groove or draw on inspiration rather than highlight a single genius. Shiva Station is a testament to this refreshing approach, somehow mixing a laid-back Miles-style horn with a smooth-jazz dotar, somehow slipping a wah-wah pedal into a reggae-doused groove, somehow laying the rock and funk under ancient Indian chant. All this with a dash of banjo, trombone, and violin and the styles cook up a stew surprisingly tasty. Uttal's secret? It may be that he approaches music without apologizing for being Western while allowing inspiration from the East to flow through him authentically. He locks into the Indian tradition in the name of musical spirituality rather than a star's ego and the effect is mesmerizing. His backing band, the Pagan Love Orchestra, reflects this understated aura as well. It features some of the finest musicians from America and beyond in collaborative, eclectic jamming--most notably on "Malkouns" and "Bhajore"--that will blow you away.
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Member CD Reviews
Dennis C. from LOCKPORT, NY
Reviewed on 4/1/2011...
Shiva Station follows Uttal's hypnotic, ethereal stle, but add a twist of the Islands! I wanted to use this work with my at home yoga practice, but found it a little distracting at first. You have to admit the title is disarming, and the music it really good in its own right. However, for my purpose, I prefer Uttal's Music for Yoga and Other Delights. I recommend this CD to all of Jai's fans.
James HS | Tennessee | 05/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Jai Uttal's music is very predictable. You always know you'll get something good. But no one track I've ever heard has been exactly the same as one I've heard before.
He shows his spirituality and musicianship consistently. But nothing really gets in the way of the listening experience. It's not that easy to make something simple and easy to listen to out of something that, compared with most modern music, is quite complicated.
There are three kinds of people who listen to Jai Uttal:
1: Those who are into his kind of spirituality.
2: Those who are into the music.
3: Those who are all the above.
4: Those who just want musical wallpaper.
It doesn't really matter whether you're a 1, 2 or 3. With Jai Uttal, it's easy: just dig it. If you're a 4, fine ... but be prepared to turn into at least a 2.
Some of his albums fall more easily into spirituality than the others - for example, "Music for yoga and other joys" - but Shiva Station is indisputably best for listeners in zone three.
I've listened to a handful of his albums, and got the desire to buy them too.
I disagree with the suggestion that he's taken Indian music and corrupted it into Reggae. That could only come from listening to a small part of only one track. What he's done is carved one more step in his path.
The hand of co-producer and guru Bill Laswell is evident more on some tracks than others, but that's the way he does it. And although Jai plays most of the instruments himself, there are more than a handful of others involved. The music is quite loosely hung together; at times it's almost improvisational. There are obvious Indian elements. Some of the lyrics will go over the heads of purely English speakers, but the whole image of the music isn't diminished by that. It includes elements of more than one genre, dipping into singer-songwriter (Corner is Sting-ish), modern Afro-pop (Jaya Jagadambe), Reggae (Shiva Station), and an almost bluegrass tinge (e.g. Bhajore). You'll no doubt spot more, and several in one track.
All together, the end result is an album that can reach mainstream musophiles more than any of his other releases, but it doesn't trade quality for appeal.
So if you haven't heard him before, and want to try out his music, this is probably the best first album you could choose. An utterly Uttal album."
East meets Jazz
Sarah J. Broda | Wisconsin | 12/18/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this CD for Yoga practice because I am a fan of Jai's music. I was pleasantly surprised by the jazz sounds on this disc. I enjoy listening to Yoga music as well as jazz and when I listen to this CD, I get the best of both worlds. My two favorites on this disc are Guru Brahma and Shiva Station. Just a pleasure to listen to!"