India’s biggest underground success, Indian Ocean is a pioneering band in the Indian fusion and rock scene. Their sound can be described as “Indo-rock fusion with jazz-spiced rhythms that integrates shlokas, sufism, environmentalism, mythology and revolution.”
Formed in the early 90s, Indian Ocean has spearheaded the Indian rock scene and is one of India’s few politically conscious bands. A cult band in its own right, the group has amalgamated Indian folk music with Western rock. Culling their lyrics from a variety of languages, including Hindi, Kashmiri, Bengali, Sanskrit and even Aramaic, their music ranges from rocking political anthems to meditative spiritual ballads.
Setting the precedent from their first self-titled album (which was the highest selling album by an Indian band at the the time), Indian Ocean has earned rave reviews from the critics and audiences alike. Their third album Kandisa, released in 2000, is considered one of the most important, best-loved albums of contemporary Indian music, while their latest album Tandanu featuring collaborations with metal, Bollywood, and Indian classical artists, has been hailed as “an album that awakens a new consciousness” by Rolling Stone India.
The band’s fame and following has not been limited to India’s shores – as their much-stamped passports attest, they are India’s leading global band.Since 2001, Indian Ocean has gracing stages across the US, Canada, UK, Europe, Australia and South East Asia. They’ve performed and collaborated with the celebrated violinist Pandit L. Subramaniam, legendary American folk singer Pete Seeger, virtuoso Japanese trumpeter Terumasa Hino and more.
Indian Ocean is available for joint performances in the US and Canada with their frequent collaborator – renowned vocalist Shubha Mudgal.
It’s easy to notice what clicked with Indian Ocean—a focus on East Indian folk music, an almost unplugged sound that complements their cultural attributes, and a rigid compact lineup with each member bringing in his unique technical preeminence, all rolled into a perfect body of work.
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Indian Ocean deliver an album that awakens a new consciousness and a renewed sense of patriotism, at a time when the nation has never been more polarized. Both sonically and lyrically, Tandanu establishes Indian Ocean as one of the most relevant bands in India right now.
This union of the bassist with with the dual drumming on a standard drum kit and on tablas provides the base and mobility so that the vocals can soar up and away toward heaven or at the very least, the stars. This is the power of Indian Ocean, a band with the strength of that great body of water from whence they take their namesake.