Recorded in Lahore, Pakistan, in April 2019, these ragas were trailered this summer with a limited 3-track 10” – which disappeared in a blink. A collaboration between Peckham`s Tenderlonious and local artists, Jaubi, the 6 pieces were improvised in a single session, and often in a single take. Tenderlonious switching between flute and saxophone, in instinctive interplay with the trio of traditionally, classically, trained maestros, and joined by EABS keyboardist Marek Pędziwiatr on synth. The latter supplying the psychedelic low frequency oscillations that pervade every track. These drones, a hallucinogenic hum, buzzing at the base of Bhakti devotionals – prayers in search of soul union with god through collective song. The soprano sax beginning slow, slightly sinister, but winding its way willfully toward the heavens with mind-blowing feats, flights, of circular breath. The thousand fleet palms and fingers of Kashif Ali Dhani tapping out teak and rosewood tabla mnemonics, on twinned baya and daya, leading the way. His voice urging, pushing, the players onward. The alto flute, fast and furious, inspired by acclaimed Classical bansuri-master Ronu Majumdar, and accompanied by Ali Riaz Baqar`s guitar, while the lightning-like movement of Zohaib Hassan Khan`s bow draws a voice of “100 colours” from the 30+ strings of his sarangi – an ancient instrument which, like the tabla, is common to North Indian Hindu, Muslim, and Sikhi ceremony. Zohaib being one of a handful of its living practitioners. Administering its healing, almost human, tones. All coming together in creative performances, dialogue in a shared musical tongue, that celebrate natural beauty and freedom – Azadi – based on the Ragas – Ba Khizer, Bairagi, Chandrakauns, Mangal Bhairav – the 12 beat cycle – Ektaal – and the Kirwani musical scale. Shaping a spiritual suite that’s essential if you’re into ECM artists, such as Shankar, Ole Theill`s latest long-player, Mahavishnu`s When Blue Turns Gold, and / or Don Cherry’s gatherings / jams with Latif Ahmed Khan.
You can order a copy of Tenderlonious` Ragas From Lahore directly from 22a.