Friday, December 11, 2009

Trilok GURTU - Usfret 1988

Trilok GURTU - Usfret 1988
Recorded between 1987 and 1988


Trilok Gurtu's name should be quite familiar to anyone following the exploits of Oregon, or to the those whose knowledge of Indian music is at least as deep as encompassing, say, Shankar. Gurtu's formidable percussion skills have been a unifying factor in the post-Colin Walcott Oregon and serve as the supple glue that gives this sterling recording its backbone.
USFRET is further testament to Gurtu's resounding and innovative voice. He is given free reign to explore his magical Indian roots, bringing along his spouse Shobha and her beautiful voice alongside fellow Oregon member Ralph Towner and the perennially vital musicianship of Nana Vasconcelos, Jan Garbarek, Jonas Hellborg, and Daniel Goyone. USFRET really cooks, as Gurtu and his stalwart ensemble lock into a number of hefty grooves cloaked in that wondrously intoxicating Indian ambience. Between Towner's guitars and Gurtu's percussions, the band whips into heated, frenzied jazz jams--proto-gamelan music that simply delights the senses.
Seriously, what a masterpiece this one is. Released wayback in 1987, this album still rocks. The lovely alaps(vocals), the unbeatable beats, the mesmerising compositions... aaah.. its simply too good. Featuring Shobha Gurtu (Trilok's mom), Don Cherry, Ralph Towner, Shankar, Daniel Goyne and more... this album is 'percussion music' redefined. This one happens to be Gurtu's first solo album, which apparently was way ahead of its time.
The album begins with Shobharock and by the end of this 7 1/2 min track, you get to know whats in store for you ahead. Phenomenal compositions that leave you breathless and moreover all the tracks are placed in an order, that lets you take a breather (or) t(w)oo.

All in all, Usfret, a landmark album in itself, proved to be an inspiration to so many, that we can still see its poor imitations.
A must buy for all you music lovers. Welcome to the land of percussion music (where Trilok Gurtu rules the roost).
By  Aditya Parwatkar.
This is actually the album claimed to be the biggest influence to musicians at the London clubscene, such as; Asian dub foundation, Nitin sawhney and Talvin Singh.
Usfret has reasently been recognized as the first "drum and bass" album - ever made (in 1988!)- that's what I call ahead of his time.
Trilok Gurtu has been rewarded several times; Downbeats readers poll - 7 years (worlds greatest percussionist). BBC worldmusic award, Carlton television ect.
And where ever you go in musical invironments, you will hear people talk about Trilok with awe.
If your standards are high, and you only accept the best contemporary music; BUY THIS ALBUM!!! (it's already a classic)
By Alec Bridgewater.
Trilok Gurtu- (Vocals, Drums, Congas, Tablas, Percussion);
Shobha Gurtu- (Vocals);
Don Cherry- (Trumpet);
Shankar- (Violin);
Daniel Goyone- (Piano, Keyboards);
Ralph Towner- (Keyboards, Acoustic Guitar);
Jonas Hellborg- (Bass);
Walter Quintus- (Tambura).
A1. Shobharock 7:35 
A2. Shangri La/Usfret 13:00 
B1   Om 7:09 
B2   Deep Tri 7:02 
B3   Goose Bumps 4:22 
B4   Milo 4:15 

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