Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Imrat Khan, Shafaatullah Khan|
Genres: World Music, Pop, Classical
Imrat Tackles Unsuitable Master Raga
Orpheus | 10/28/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Unfortunately, this is not one of the best recordings by Imrat Khan. He is one of the "real guys" of north Indian classical music, and we have come to expect the best from him.Raga Marwa is one of the most difficult melodies in the Hindustani pantheon, and has always worked temptation and allure on masters and beginners alike. Imrat Khan has chosen to record it after his nowadays customary model: alap-jor on surbahar followed by aochar-gat on sitar. Now, would this be considered good taste for Marwa? No, and as this record proves, this is not arbitrary but there are good reasons for it. Marwa is simply too difficult for the vast majority of performers to handle in fast gat or jhalla. Imrat Khan seems to be one of them, as he lets both parts develop into jhalla slam-fests that completely ruin the music.His alap, and early jor, are splendid; here, he almost always delivers. But perhaps (and in my opinion, quite probably) Marwa is not suited for the standard Hindustani instrumental performance tradition where you build up faster and more intense music up to a climactic ending. It is too difficult to keep the raga alive in very fast parts, even for Imrat Khan. Marwa would be better suited for a khyal singer's long vilambit, where it can be developed over time while keeping the overall level constant, or for alap only, such as the Dagar binkars like to play. I think this is one of Imrat's weekest discs, but of course it too has (in the alap) its moments of striking beauty."
Under the sway of Anticipation
Orpheus | on the road | 03/07/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This recording of the Sunset Rag Marwa by Ustad Imrat Khan belongs to a series of four by now legendary Nimbus recordings. In the series this is the only 'continuous recording' of one and the same Rag, first alaap, Jhor and Jhalla on surbahar(bass sitar) and The Gats on sitar.
Rag Marwa is pictured in the Ragamala paintings of the sixteenth century as two lovers entering a bed room. A lot of renditions of Marwa can become some what wild and uncontrolled, not so with this one. From the beginning to the end the built up is measured with extraordinary discipline and executed with the utmost resolution. The Ustad's tone and phrasing are mysterious, elegant, refined and exalted, yet at the same time lushious and sensuous. A strange atmosphere of dazed anticipation and eager exitement, yet restrained passion is apparent throughout, to be released at the end with and irresistable momentum and drive into rapid runs of frenzy.
As for the gats, they are irresistable, especially the cadence that end the raga is very persuasive and almost hypnotic. I'm not sure about the other reviewer complaining that the Ustad cannot keep up. Perhaps he is right, relatively new to this exalted musical tradition I cannot judge these things. As for me listening, I must say the sitar playing is very aristocratic, mesmerizing and almost playful, exhibiting subtleties I have never heard in other Great's playing.
If you have enjoyed other CD's by this great Master, this one is a sure thing. Enjoy!"