Complex Simplicities EP – Amal Lad

Today sees the release of ‘Complex Simplicities, the debut EP by my good friend Amal Lad. This five track EP is the coming together of his years of devotion to music.

There are a variety of sounds in on this EP. The journey begins with ‘Lift off’‘ featuring the voice of, Pandit Ravi Sharma, a Hindu priest chanting ancient Vedic verses in Sanskrit. Accompanying this is Amal’s guitar solo, this acts like another voice chanting together with the priest in harmony.

‘Take me away’ is the rework of an older track of Amal’s ‘Once upon a time in London‘ which I posted about a while back. Consisting of a simple guitar riff and the gorgeous alaaps from Ambika Jois, this track has evolved and developed its distinct almost indie like personality.

This leads nicely on the the next track ‘Close your eyes‘, which is another collaboration with Ambika Jois. A deep and meaningful track which talks human relationships and our thirst for this interaction. I love how Ambika’s vocals on this track go from a western style of singing to Indian classical seamlessly … a perfect example of her ‘Indioul‘ style.

Words from Amal: “Personally, “Close Your Eyes” represents a relationship with someone, a comfort and love coming from an external person such as family, friend or lover. I think there is an instinctive human yearning for affection, support and security from another person.”

Toy Soldiers‘, the penultimate track of the EP has quite a moving story behind. Amal visited a Steve McCurry photo exhibition in Birmingham and came across a photo that moved him. This is his musical interpretation, conveying the impact the image had on him.

AMAL: “it was impossible for me to forget the face of that young boy, from the snot running down his face to the worn away Spiderman top.  War is the pre-determined fate of many children.  Many are forced into battle and many are forced into a coffin. For this boy, it seems like he has already seen enough pain and can see only one way out”

The closing track is ‘Rajasthani Song’ – An awesome upbeat number, great use of guitar  and vocals samples by the late Munshi Khan as part of the EarthMoments Voice of India bundle from EarthSync. My kinda sound!

Overall, this is a brilliant EP as a debut, its fresh, original and more importantly each track has its own personal meaning. I’ve known Amal since his college days and over the years his music has developed a thought provoking style. The thing I admire about him is that he isn’t about churning out tracks for the sake of it, nor is he about making tracks that sound good to the masses. His music is a representation of who he is, his thoughts, philosophies and his feelings about the world, life and its ups and downs.Looking forward to more from Amal!

Complex Simplicities EP available on iTunes

Nada Brahma

NADA BRAHMA is a UK based online magazine and music portal devoted to reporting the latest music news and commentary and album reviews, articles, and event listings, focusing on the underground and independent music scene. The range of musical genres covered extends to some of most pioneering Asiatic/Global electronica, jazz, Indian classical and experimental music from India, UK, USA and everything in between.

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