It was incredibly nice to reconnect with the music of Devan Ekambaram once again, and through
the medium of his latest album Brindavan,
I remember all too well his outstanding single A Walk through Brindavan from 2021, so to be presented with a whole
album is a pure treat.
The opening track is the wonderfully fluent and charming
title header, the former single A Walk
through Brindavan, this brings a blissful sun kissed moment of this most
picturesque of places in India, my research revealed stunning landscapes and
views, so look for yourself and listen to this at the same time, also featured
on this piece are the talents of both Nel
Bucktowar& Vijay Gopal.
The title of this next track is something I wish for all and
entitled Let There Be Peace. This
up-tempo driving song is a breath taking reverie of utter class, and contains
the skill sets of both Vijay Gopal &
Prakash Sontakke. The western influences here are so colourful and match
the vibrations from its original eastern essences to perfection.
A storm moves us to this next track, the delicacy of
production here is simply something special to enjoy, here is cross genre
music, if you would ever call one so, a mix of smooth jazz, light funk and
world music, all go into making I Need
You Now, one of the most moving and imploring tracks off the album. Nel Bucktowar& Taylor Eigsti lend
their skills to this quite incredible offering, and the piano here is utterly
Aaraadha is a track that exposes us to the
beauty of the voice that is Mahalakshmi
Iyer. A gentle jazzy world vibe flows across us like a warm wind from the
eastern islands and gifts us a song that is so sweet and so wonderfully
At this juncture we now find ourselves at the half way marker
of the album, here lays one of my favourite pieces from the release entitled Missing You, the very smoothness of
this song is so blissfully graceful and textured. Mahathi & Nel Bucktowar feature on this particular track, which
is an intricate weave of a piece that contains delightful vocals and a very
classy multi-instrumental production.
Now let’s change up a gear and raise the rhythms with a
sparkling musical reverie entitled Jerry. Ekambaram has really brought that
almost rocky soul vibe to this fantastic song, one that contains the crafts of
both Rick Brunermer & Nel Bucktowar
on the track. The guitar from this fast paced offering then leads us with a
delicate hand into the deeper well of the album, and a composition entitled Thrumagal.
This would be another personal favourite of mine, that smooth
vibe is back on a track that could easily make its mark in the chill out genre
all on its own right. Thrumagal is a
fascinating track, one with a wonderfully delicious light funky feel and the
solo on Sax from Rick Brunermer was
simply outstanding too.
We are now running down that hill towards the conclusion of
the album, but before we get to that point we are gifted a sublime offering
from the artist entitled Latin Masala,
a full on Latin styled jazz offering, and we must also praise the skills of
both Daniel Minimalia & Punya Srinivas for their genius during
this arrangement, the acoustic guitar from the first ever winner of the Latin
Grammys was utterly picturesque, and the juxtaposition with the Veena of Punya Srinivas doubly so.
We even get time for a little more of Thrumagal a classy Reprise
one that features Rick Brunermer &
Danwen Jiang, her violin added a whole well of emotion into the
proceedings, which would lead us to the next song with ease with the concluding
offering A Little Fun In Naatai. One
simply has to say what an inspired way with which to close the album out, one
thing we must say about Devan is, he certainly knows what’s needed and when its
required, and adding D.A. Srinivas &
Arun Ramamurthi into the mix was a spot of sheer genius.
Brindavan by Devan Ekambaram was eagerly anticipated and it has lived up to and
beyond its expectations, here is an album that contains sublime methodology,
crafted production and arrangements, and a whole raft of talented musicians to
manifest one of the most appealing cross genre albums of the last few
years. If you like your music to contain
a little global vibe, a layer of very smooth jazz, performed by top notch
musicians, then you need to look no further than Brindavan by Devan Ekambaram.