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Ranjit Barot, Bada Boom
Abstract Logix Records, Oct. 19

11/18/10
By Eric Saeger news@hippopress.com



I’m no connoisseur of fusion, but it’s funny, flying blind without even reading the bio I sensed something very John McLaughlin about the guitar work on this, and hey, there it is, a McLaughlin credit on opening tune “Singularity.” Wait, don’t go anywhere — this isn’t your daddy’s fusion, it’s a very compelling debut from this Hindi multi-instrumentalist sideman, his guests a mix of friends and admirers. Sure, there’s an air of Romantic Warrior and stuff like that; muscular, almost too-tight sprints aplenty, but his ethnicity is a most welcome joker in the deck. The fake-outs are pretty cool — tabla parts played on a regular drum kit, guitar funk coming out of a veena — and create an experience that’s (no, I’m not going to say Bollywood, because it’s nothing like that) like  a Return to Forever best-of dubbed with top-drawer Hindi folk. There’s an exciting, labyrinthine vocal passage on “T=0” that will make the whole album worth the listen for some people, but either way, serious prog-heads need to invest in this. A  —Eric W. Saeger






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