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Wednesday, 31 October 2012

The Sound of South East Asia - Songlines Compillation

It's not often you hear something completely different. Everything is a mixture or a rehash of music past and present. The Sound of South East Asia is a compilation of tracks from three Asian music festivals at the Southbank Centre and it's like nothing you've ever heard before. It's strange, exotic, alien, but at the same time it's addictive and thoroughly enjoyable.

Susheela Raman's 'Daga Daga' is a great example. Is it rap? is it bhangra? It's definitely frenetic chanting which I only wish I could understand. Aruna Sairam's contribution is an equally complex mesh of rhythms, tempos and beats which I could listen to again and again it's so hypnotic. Megastar Raghu Dixit also chips in with 'Gudugudiya Sed Nodo' which almost dips into Eurovision territory with its sing-a-long catchy chorus. There's too many high points to mention, but each and every song has something to offer.

It sounds totally unappealing, but if you can find a copy it's well worth a listen. South East Asian music is as obscure as you can get, but it's a hidden treasure if you're prepared to give it a go.

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