|Styles:||Indian fusion, Ethno|
|Discography:||2016 – Up
2011 – Cinema
2007 – Breathing Underwater (w/Anoushka Shankar)
2007 – Beautiful Remixes EP
2006 – Manifest Remixes EP
2007 – Broken English
2003 – Liberation
2002 – Redesign: Realize Remixed
2001 – Realize
|Karsh Kale (pronounced kursh kay-LEE) melds the music of his Indian heritage with the modern electronic club music of his American upbringing. Kale is creating a unique blend of Indian percussion with techno and drum & bass. Kale’s compositions are often strident, loud, and dense with energy; heavy on the percussion and more instrumental than vocal.
He was born in London but grew up in Stony Brook, New York. Kale studied western drumming and Indian percussion from an early age. While attending high school he played in a number of local classic rock bands with a bent towards progressive groups such as Rush and Kansas. As he matured he gravitated toward Indian Fusion but with a large dose of New York City attitude and rock/techno hardness. In style of Indian Fusion he is closer to Talvin Singh or Midival Punditz than Bally Sagoo. At the time of his first CD, Realize, he called his musical style “urban raag.”
As a DJ in several New York clubs he played a blend of Western and Indian songs often enhancing the music by playing a tabla in the DJ booth. Perhaps no one plays the tabla harder than Kale, and some mistakenly assume it is electronic. His style of “electric tabla” playing achieves its distinctive reverb by resonating the tablas with closely placed dual microphones.
The songs on his first two CDs, Realize and Liberation, were based on Indian classical ragas liberally spiced with electronics. In the CD Broken English, Kale veered off into cheesy hip-hop and cheesier pop on a few tracks, though the majority of the album stayed true to his style. After two forgettable remix EPs he teamed up with Anoushka Shankar, the sitar maestro, to create Breathing Underwater, luscious cinematic music steeped in classical Indian traditions.
Karsh Kale is prolific, seemingly willing to lend a hand, and drum, to almost anyone from Herbie Hancock to DJ Spooky. He is a member of the Asian Underground supergroup Tabla Beat Science. He has become a mainstay in Six Degrees Records ever expanding series of compilation CDs having appeared on six so far. In summer of 2008 he did an abbreviated DJ tour with Midival Punditz. In recent years he has worked more in India with other musicians, most notably Anoushka Shankar, and for Indian movies and television.
Thanks. Well written article.