The Raj Trio

Harmony

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AllMusic Review by

When a group calls itself the Raj Trio and the names of its members are Rajkumar Charan Kalapatapu, Veena Raj Kalapatapu, and Rajkumar Kiran Kalapatapu, you tend to assume that its focus is Indian music. But Harmony isn't traditional Indian music; nor is it bhangra or modern Indian pop -- at least not the sort of Indian pop that is coming out of Bombay and Calcutta (or, for that matter, London and Manchester). The three siblings who comprise the Raj Trio are of Indian descent, but they don't live in India -- the group is based in Logansport, IN, and all of its lyrics are in English. The main focus of Harmony is high-tech dance-pop with a strong European influence; nonetheless, there are subtle hints of South Indian music, and one of the tracks, "Adventure," finds the singer/musicians' mother and executive producer, Dr. Sitha Gita, playing the vina (a string instrument that has been prominent in traditional South Indian/Carnatic music for centuries). Musically, Harmony is really more West than East. But lyrically, this promising CD is very Eastern-influenced. The lyrics are quite spiritual, reflecting the siblings' Hindu heritage. Technically, you could call Harmony Indian pop because it is pop music by people of Indian descent -- but again, it's important to stress that Harmony doesn't sound like pop music that was recorded in India. This is pop music by Indians living in the United States, and the material is quite fresh-sounding. Even though the Raj Trio sounds like it still has a bit of growing and developing to do, the siblings deserve credit for being unorthodox and risk-taking. One hears a great deal of potential on this intriguing and generally enjoyable, if slightly uneven, CD.

Track Listing

Title/Composer Performer Time
1
4:37
2
4:30
3
4:35
4
4:10
5
4:27
6
3:33
7
6:02
blue highlight denotes track pick