Music Reviews — 21 November 2015

Yoga Teacher Harnal Kaur reviews Manish Vyas’s new album.

Atma BhaktiThe first time, I played the album in the morning, after my yoga session and before sunrise. I was transported right away to another space. The CD has music for a total of one hour, yet there is an anchor harmoniously kept all the time, from beginning to end. The album starts with the track ‘Atma’, which features the mantra Mangalam in an echoing, hypnotizing way. When the bansuri flute comes in, the feeling of falling into quietness and timeless meditation deepens. The playing of bansuri in this album is so perfectly achieved. Tibetan bells are played in an alternate way along the half hour that the track lasts, as well as the vocals and the flute. This rotation of elements helped me to remain in awareness, because they come in and out in a very mellow way, but yet maintain a certain clear dynamics.

The second piece, ‘Bhakti’ is equally meditative and has this deep prayer feel in it. The mantra featured this time, also in a spacious way, is Shiva Namaha Om. Instrumentally, tamboura and Indian harp are used in a seductive and delicate way. Again, I found the bansuri work fantastic. There is a surprising added element in this piece: the vedic chanting, which really gives the touch – it is like a sudden source of some concentrated energy. Very creatively incorporated to this music, innovative and pleasant.

The Vedic chanting is repeated in the third track by itself, sung in a tantric way for about 5 minutes. In this chanting, different mantras are repeated one after the other and the feeling is truly that of the prayer happening in a Hindu Temple (for someone who has visited India, it will resonate so much… bringing beautiful memories of devotional India). It is so powerful that I left it in eplay-mode and in a higher volume, for a few times… it was a great experience.

When Manish’s vocals come in through the whole album, in the way of mantras and tarana, they feel like a caress: paused, still, deep. Voice is present… yet creating silence. Manish has an immense respect for pause and silence, and he knows very well how to use them to create the perfect balance. The voice feels relaxing and soothing; and the echoing effects emphasize the vibration of a Buddha: timeless and spaceless.

“There is no other moment but now.” For me, this is the phrase around which the whole CD whirls – and its vibration reflects a prayer to the divine.

Harnal Kaur, Yoga Teacher, USA

Watch on YouTube

List of Tracks
1. Atma 32:16
2. Bhakti 29:15
3. Vedic Chanting 5:16
Total Time: 66:47

Idea, composition, arrangements, vocals, Indian harp, keyboards, tamboura, bells: Manish Vyas
Bansuri, mixing, mastering: Milind Date
Vocals on Vedic chanting: Krishn Jani, Jay Dave, Manish Vyas

Listen to tracks and find links to buy album and downloads: www.newearthrecords.com

Listen to the third track on Osho News: Vedic Chanting

Manish VyasManish grew up in a sannyas family in Gujarat, India, and was initiated into sannyas by Osho in 1978, when he was just 7. In 1986, Manish moved to Pune originally to study engineering, but instead became involved in the music department of Osho’s Commune. He played live for Osho together with musicians from all over the world. This period helped his musical horizons expand. Manish has since performed, recorded and travelled with Prem Joshua, Chinmaya Dunster, Snatam Kaur, Shastro, Praful, Sudha, Maneesh and many other musicians. He has also composed mantras for Deva Premal. www.manishvyas.com

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