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Neil Welch & The Narmada Project
Neil Welch: saxophones
Chris Icasiano: drums
Luke Bergman: bass
Cam Peace: guitar
Brian Kinsella: piano
Tor Dietrichson: tabla/congas/percussion
Pandit Debi Prasad Chatterjee: sitar
With its debut record, Narmada (Belle Records), released early this year, the Neil Welch group announced that it would be a force on the local scene. Heavily influenced by Hindustani music and the spiritual music of John Coltrane, Albert Ayler, and Pharaoh Sanders, Narmada combines free improvisation, highly-arranged multi-meter composition, and traditional Hindustani musical forms.
Welch says: “I utilize what I believe will be an important part of the defining sounds of the second century in jazz music: the use of exotic scales, hybrid grooves (of different meters and musical traditions), and improvisational density (sound art, musical interplay, and pacing). My interpretation lies in hybrid, cross-cultural mediums such as the classical music of India, with its multi-directional scales, microtones, drones, and severe emotional depth.”
Each member of the ensemble is involved in an eclectic variety of music, including electronica, free improvisation, phase and minimalist music, rock opera, world music, swing, and classical Hindustani music.