Monday, November 12, 2007

Niraj Chag

OK, want to know more about the song called"Khwaab" (Dream) from the album Along the Dusty Road. And it is Swati Natekar's vocals soaring over hypnotic rhythms and piano. A Hindi poem about the highs and lows of life’s journey, "Khwaab" stands out as the album's most beautiful track. If you wish to see a translation of the song, please visit Chag's website.

It took Niraj Chag three years to complete, it is therefore no surprise that his debut album is a contemplative and accomplished journey of sound, according to a BBC review.

In the album-titled opening track, electronica, tabla and deep bass fuse with the spoken lyrics 'she drank from the sun…she understands the whispering of the trees'. Haunting and evocative, it sets the scene for the 45 minute dream-sequence that follows.

Niraj was born in '76 and raised in Southampton, southern England, where he studied music for many years before landing a job at 'Mark Hills' studio (The Artful Dodger/Craig David). He progressed from tea-maker to studio assistant and ended up working with Mark on various RnB and garage projects.

In 1996 he moved to London to start a Music Technology Degree. It was here that he began to experiment with a mix of eastern and western sounds, such as the track 'The Firefly' demonstrates (Untouchable Outcaste Beats Vol 1). The track highlights Niraj's wonderful ability to build very deep, melodic tracks at almost any pace. It was subsequently picked up by Nitin Sawhney and Niraj became an Outcaste artist.

He has worked on a varitey of projects including the Ranga Rang project (part of the Queens Golden Jubilee celebrations), compositions for Diesel fashion launches, music for the opening ceremony to the Common Wealth Games and a classical indian dance piece entitled 'Rush' for the BBC2 Mega Mela show.