Ravish Momin’s Tarana delivers another boundary-free musical offering with After the Disquet EP (October 4, 2011), self-released, and featuring violinist Trina Basu.
Momin expresses his flavors of world jazz with Asian, Middle-eastern and African stylings. These are washed in lush ambient textures and electronica loops that are inspired by Glitch, Dubstep, and forward-thinking electronica. It’s not the exotic or as a gimmick, but the expression of “global village” apparent in the US, where many cultures co-exist. He is aware of the pitfalls of eclecticism, but he also believes that if the roots are steady, the direction will be steady. And indeed, the roots are solid on this EP. They may feel unfamiliar, but at the same time the music has elements you’ll immediately recognize, even if you’re not sure of the source.
All compositions are by Momin. Hypnotic ostinatos from Momin’s drums and sonically interesting electronic loops and textures serve as a backdrop to Basu’s solos.Uniquely, Momin is creating/crafting the electronic elements in real-time. At times, the line between what is improvised and composed is blurry due to the incredible cohesion of the duo. Disposable is based on a North-Indian folk song and feels like a suite that continually transforms, changing tempos and moods, as it moves past a changing landscape. Hava is inspired by the ‘Hava Mahaal’ (Palace of Air) in Jaipur, India, which features a myriad of cleverly placed windows that continually create air-flow in the intense desert climes. The tune similarly creates a sinewy flow between melodic fragments, beautifully framed by Basu’s violin and Momin’s confident beats. Night Song is dedicated to the late and great Jazz-bassist Wilber Morris, offering a Jazzy melodycouched onto a driving Hip-Hop rhythm.The Black Teeth of Trees is the only piece that is completely improvised, getting its grounding in a dance-club like industrial/electronica rhythm that sets the mood for Basu’s lines that gently float on top.
TARANA is led by New York basd Percussionist/Composer Ravish Momin, who was born in India and has also lived in Bahrain. His founding of Tarana in 2003 was a natural culmination of all the diverse influences, and serves to create music that is distinctly universal in its outlook. “Tarana” itself refers to a song-style in North Indian Classical Music where nonsense syllables or mnemonic drum sounds are used to spontaneously create a fluid chant or composition. In keeping with the spirit of “Tarana”, the duo primarily utilizes Indian and East-Asian rhythms as the foundation for a new creative musical experience. Their 2004 CleanFeed debut entitled “Climbing the Banyan Tree” earned wide acclaim as “a profound and organic fusion of Indian, Middle-eastern and Western Music.”- Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader.
Tarana has recently performed at the Aguascalientes Jazz Festival (Mexico, 2010), The Soundspace Festival (Albuquerque, 2010), The Guelph Jazz Festival (Canada, 2010), The Lolafest (Canada, 2010), and the San Servolo Jazz Meeting (Venice, Italy, 2010.) They’ve toured the US, Europe and even China, and most notably, have also performed at The Calgary Jazz Festival (Canada, 2009), Jazz Lent (Maribor, Slovenia, 2009), Cultural Festival Zacatecas (Mexico 2009), Jazz Ao Centro Festival (Coimbra, Portugal, 2008.) In the US, they've performed at the prestigious Smithsonian Institution’s Freer Gallery (Washington, DC, 2005) and the Detroit Institute of the Arts (DIA), (2006) amongst many other prestigious venues.
RAVISH MOMIN studied drumset with Andrew Cyrille and Bob Moses. He has also studied North Indian percussion with Misha Masud, a disciple of Ustad Zakir Hussain. Recently, he was given the opportunity to perform with pop-star Shakira on televised appearances on "The View" (ABC), "Rockefeller Tree Lighting" (NBC) and the "Rachel Ray Show" (ABC.) He has toured and recorded with legendary AACM saxophonist Kalaparush Maurice McIntyre, singer Marie Afonso (ex Zap Mama), saxophonists Sabir Mateen and Peter Epstein, guitarist Ty Braxton (ex-Battles) and Brad Shepik, bassists Wilber Morris and William Parker, Violinists Billy Bang and Jason Kao Hwang, percussionist Susie Ibarra, trumpeters Roy Campbell and Raphe Malik, Hip-Hop artist IsWhat?, and also toured with the up-and-coming Indie-rock band Fulton Lights. He has recorded for the CleanFeed, Delmark, NuBop, CIMP, Entropy Stereo, & BlueRegard Record Labels.
TRINA BASU is a violinist residing in Brooklyn, N.Y. Influenced by the classical traditions of Europe and India, folk and jazz traditions of America, and improvisation. After college, she lived and worked in Montreal, Canada and in 2007 was awarded an Artist Fellowship from the Indo-Shastri Canadian Institute to study Carnatic violin in the rich tradition of South Indian Classical music under esteemed violinists, Vittal Ramamurthy and Padma Shankar in Chennai, India. Upon her return, Trina’s experience in India became a springboard for many more musical adventures, one of which was the formation of Karavika (formerly known as Tiger Lilies), a duo she started with cellist, Amali Premawardhana in 2009. In 2010, they were the featured performers at TEDxGotham in NYC.
Trina is also a regular member of Adam Rudolph’s GO: Organic Orchestraand A.R. Balaskandan’s Carnatic percussion ensemble, Akshara. She has been honored to perform and/or record with Mos Def, Gil Scott Heron, Susan McKeown, Urban Bush Women, Vittal Ramamurthy, Nalini Vinayak, Rashmi Agarwal, Saunders Sermon, Adam Klipple, Sameer Gupta and Malini Srinivasan’s Dancers, among other creative artists. She has performed at prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Raga Sudha Hall, Newport Jazz Festival, LearnQuest Indian Classical Music Conference and NYC Winter Jazz Fest.
“Few groups stretch the boundaries of jazz further than Ravish Momin's Tarana, which performed Friday night at the Andy Warhol Museum. They build beautiful, utterly unpredictable improvisations from elements as disparate as Indian classical music, electronic music and a vast panoply of East Asian rhythms. Yet, their singular commitment to heavy, groove-based rhythms -- even in extremely complex time signatures -- is utterly irresistible, and something any rock, pop or hip-hop fan can pick up on immediately.” - Michael Machosky, Pittsburgh Tribune Review (about Tarana’s live performance)
"You've never heard (or seen) a drummer like Ravish Momin. Whether he's playing the drum set with his hands, seamlessly fusing his drums with a laptop full of electronic sounds, or creating vocal percussion, Momin is reinventing his instrument." – Ron Netsky, Rochester Times (about Tarana’s live performance)