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HindustanTimes Wed,20 Aug 2014

A gathering of voices

Luke Kenny, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, April 04, 2011
First Published: 13:53 IST(4/4/2011) | Last Updated: 14:00 IST(4/4/2011)

Every once in a while, a music event comes along that generates a unique experience for us city folks, jaded by the mundane and moribund. Here are artistes, who by the sheer power of their performance, move you to extreme emotions and leave a lasting impression. Last week, the city experienced such an emotion. The vocal excellence of the Shillong Chamber Choir (SCC) was resplendent through the stellar collection of voices that will took us on a sonic journey like never before. No strangers to success— from having won at national reality shows to performing for international dignitaries such as Barack Obama and even Pratibha Patil and APJ Abdul Kalam— the SCC are a phenomenon to reckon with.
 
Their repertoire is equally phenomenal, effortlessly ranging from western classical pieces by Handel, Mozart and Bach to rock songs by Queen, and from Khasi folk songs from Shillong to popular Hindi film hits, they’ve got it all. And after touring the world over, Mumbai city will get to experience them firsthand. From the 15 voices on stage, I would like you to watch out for a few who will take your breath away. Namely, Donna Marthong, 29 years and a soloist to reckon with, Ibarisha Lyngdoh, 18 years and a soprano who will knock your socks off, and 15 year old Adiel Massar, who sings bass. So mark your dates and get ready for an evening to remember…if I may say so.

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Here’s what you want on your iPod, recommends Luke Kenny

The King of Limbs
Radiohead
Self-released
You may have already seen Thom Yorke’s dance video for the first single, Lotus flower. Radiohead is probably the only band out there that’s challenging convention in every aspect. I do not need to elaborate on the ebullience of the music, the melancholy of the production, the quiet storm of the arrangements, the fan-pleasing salutations of the lyrics and, most of all, the electro-rock heartbeat that keeps a band like Radiohead miles above the mundane, jaded and hopelessly predictable commercial consumer music that still continues to boil out from the sewers of mediocrity.

Angles
The Strokes
Sony Music
The fourth album from New York rockers sees them in good form, with the opening track, Macchu Picchu setting the tone for a sublimely listener-friendly sonic experience. Fans might liken this album to their acclaimed 2001 debut, Is this it, but in my opinion, it steps far away from that. This is a busy record; there’s so much happening, from the bop-beats of Under cover of darkness to the fury of, Two kinds of happiness, that these ten songs will set the tone for bands to follow in their own way.

Endgame
Rise Against
Universal
Here’s a discovery for you punk rockers out there. Formed in 1999, these Chicago punksters are a band with a conscience. They are vegetarians; alcohol and drug-free and constant campaigners for the environment. The music is powerful, edgy and has a rawness to it that is much missed in this day and age of digital production. The songs talk about Hurricane Katrina, oil spills, and human environmental disasters that seem to keep occurring. Seek out the rest of their music, I tell you.

Awesome As F***
Greenday
Warner
Green Day has become the biggest punk band in the world and not without reason: powerful production, catchy choruses, grinding guitars and those pounding drums. A fun time for all is guaranteed. This is a compilation of live tracks off their 21st century Breakdown tour. The energy is palpable as we coast through classic tracks like Holiday, When I come around and Good riddance amongst the newer hits like, Know your enemy, 21 guns, American idiot and of course, 21st century breakdown. It’s amazing to hear three guys on stage stir up such energy and madness to an audio recording. Look out for the live DVD, as well.

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