Original Soundtrack

The Mahabahrata

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Those with a limited knowledge of Indian music might think that this soundtrack to the 1989 film The Mahabarata (which was based on the story told in the ancient Hindu scripture of the same name) was recorded with "purists" in mind. But in fact, the haunting, tranquil music heard on this CD takes its share of liberties with Indian spiritual music -- and that's what makes it so interesting and so challenging. "Virata, " "Hima" and other selections hardly qualify as modern Indian pop, but the extensive use of non-Indian instruments lets you know that the musicians (who come from Japan, Turkey, Iran and Denmark, as well as India) were intent on taking lots of chances. Indian "purists" in Bombay and Calcutta aren't likely to play Hindu music using Japanese taiko drums, the Turkish ney or the didgeridoo (an instrument embraced by the Australian Aborigines), but all of those instruments are heard on this unorthodox and consistently rewarding soundtrack.

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