All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

347

Mynta: Mynta - Hot Days

By

Sign in to view read count
Hot Days, a compilation of fifteen of Mynta's best studio works, spans 25 years and five albums. Though not a "best of" set, it surely is a definitive collection for those not yet initiated into the unique mix of African and Latin-American rhythms, Arabic sounds and Scandinavian folk tradition that Mynta offers.

Few world music ensembles combine the suppleness of Indian Classical with the vigor of Swedish jazz in a more subtle way than Mynta, whose music is fresh, delicate, liberating and smooth. Whenever Indian and Western fusion is mentioned, John McLaughlin's Shakti is the most familiar name. That group was a fusion of instruments, taking Indian classical as the dominant sound, though breaking away from its strict realms of composition to a more improvisational quality. Shakti closely missed being a fusion of two different sounds. The apparent following and regard received by Shakti (with such heavyweights as McLaughlin, Zakir Hussain and Vikku Vinayakram) was well-deserved.

Mynta is a perfect fusion of two very different sounds, emancipating a unique compositional blend of unity and individuality where sounds are intertwined closely, yet each retains a distinct character. It's comparatively a rare band in the world of East-West fusion. Besides having developed an incisively personal style, the band has a concentrated completeness and expressive body of work, each maintaining a consistent integrity, yet subject to seasonal changes that define its coming to age.

The first three songs of the compilation are from the 1988 album Indian Time, one of Mynta's early albums and supposedly the one that would exemplify the group for years to come. The characteristic features here are laid-back rhythmic elements, high levels of improvisation from the entire group, and safe-sided lesser experimentation. Hot Madras, recorded in 1991—a free-bop-styled album, evidently portraying the band's move towards more vigor—is the source of the next three songs.

The next six songs come from Nandu's Dance (1994) and First Summer (1997), considered to be the most experimental albums by the band at its creative heights. "First Summer" is Mynta's signature song, even incorporating rap vocals. Legendary classical vocalist Shankar Mahadevan collaborated with the band for the first time here, and it's altogether a different ride. The last three tracks are from Teabreak (2003), a dazzling experimental entity. Though a surprise to many of Mynta's fans through its incorporation of electronic beats, Indian Classical vocals and heavy bass-laden sound, the album is a perfectionist choice, displaying a group that has come a long way together.

Given the sheer volume of this storied band's recordings, Hot Days introduces us to some, but hardly all, of the main instrumental contributors in the band's history. With a bonus live DVD at Fasching, Hot Days becomes an essential addition to the Mynta canon.


Track Listing: Indian Time; Seventh Heaven; To Fazal; Hymn of India; Hot Madras; Banfora; Nandus Dance; Sounds; Hey-Ho; first Summer; Rapatal; Serra Yeah Yeah; Teabreak; Fuzzy; Red Departure.

Personnel: Fazal Qureshi: tabla; Shankar Mahadevan: vocal; Nandkishor Muley: santoor; Sridhar Partasarathy: mridangam; Anders Hagberg: soprano, flute; Max Ahman: guitar; Christian Paulin: bass; Michael Hedenquist: percussion; Mikael Nilsson: percussion; Ola Bothzen: percussion; Johan Soderqvist: keyboard; Jan Radesjo: keyboard; Stefan Blomquist: keyboard; Magnum Coltrane Price: rap; Santiago Jimenez: violin.

Title: Mynta - Hot Days | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Free Spirit

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Walk The Walk CD/LP/Track Review
Walk The Walk
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Vol II CD/LP/Track Review
Vol II
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Months, Weeks and Days CD/LP/Track Review
Months, Weeks and Days
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Space Is The Place CD/LP/Track Review
Space Is The Place
by James Fleming
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Poetry in Motion CD/LP/Track Review
Poetry in Motion
by Liz Goodwin
Published: May 21, 2018
Read Murals CD/LP/Track Review
Murals
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 20, 2018
Read "Live In Vienna, December 1st, 2016 (UK Edition)" CD/LP/Track Review Live In Vienna, December 1st, 2016 (UK Edition)
by John Kelman
Published: March 30, 2018
Read "Roscanna" CD/LP/Track Review Roscanna
by Ian Patterson
Published: January 1, 2018
Read "Nightports" CD/LP/Track Review Nightports
by Gareth Thompson
Published: March 8, 2018
Read "Man No Longer Me" CD/LP/Track Review Man No Longer Me
by Matt Hooke
Published: December 25, 2017
Read "Don't You Wish?" CD/LP/Track Review Don't You Wish?
by Patrick Burnette
Published: March 3, 2018
Read "Live From A&R Studios New York August 26th 1971" CD/LP/Track Review Live From A&R Studios New York August 26th 1971
by Doug Collette
Published: July 29, 2017