Shankar Mahadevan

Introducing Shankar Mahadevan: The Voice of India Today

  • AllMusic Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Shankar Mahadevan is a versatile, contemporary Indian singer whose music has as much (probably more) to do with Western dance beats and pop styles as it does with the Indian classical tradition or typical Bollywood. Mahadevan first attained significant fame in India in 1998 when he scored a hit with the appropriately titled "Breathless," sung at a breakneck pace in a manner not unlike Bob Dylan's "Subterranean Homesick Blues" or R.E.M.'s "It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)." But his history goes back further than that -- he spent more than a decade working with the Swedish group Mynta and also collaborated with jazz guitar legend John McLaughlin on the latter's Remembering Shakti tours and Industrial Zen album. Mahadevan's grounding in both native Indian music and modern jazz and pop has served him well. This two-CD compilation is filled with urgent-sounding, pumped-up dancefloor blasters, devotional pieces with a classical base, romantic pop, film music (some written by the Bollywood icon A.R. Rahman), straight-ahead jazz, and semi-traditional songs that would more than satisfy a world music purist. Mahadevan is something of a one-stop, one-man tour of modern Indian music, a sign of what's ahead that still manages to pay its respects to what's come before.

blue highlight denotes track pick