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Bollywood Brass Band/Jyotsna Srikanth: Carnatic Connection review – rousing, exuberant – The Guardian

(Bollywood Brass Band/Sterns)
With their pounding dhol drums, trumpets and trombones, the London-based Bollywood Brass Band have successfully reworked Indian film music without the help of strings or singers. Now they have teamed up with the remarkable violinist Jyotsna Srikanth, who specialised in the Carnatic classical music of southern India before becoming known for her Bollywood soundtracks and jazz fusion. The emphasis is on film music from the south, and the set starts with an exuberant arrangement of a song from a 1991 thriller, with intertwining violin and brass spurred on by insistent percussion. Elsewhere, there are new compositions inspired by the Tamil film Chandralekha and a rousing treatment of AR Rahman’s Jai Ho, from Slumdog Millionaire. But the finest track is the arrangement of the classical Deva Deva Kalayami, which starts as an exquisite, slow violin improvisation against a subtle brass backing.

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