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Top 10 World Music CDs

Anoushka Shankar & Karsh Kale
February , 2008

By Robert Kaye

Breathing Under Water
Manhattan

Celebrated sitarist and composer Anoushka Shankar and respected producer and percussionist Karsh Kale reach for new vistas on their first ever full-length collaboration. Breathing Under Water is a compelling travelogue of East and West, traditional and modern. Some tunes, such as “PD7” and “Sea Dreamer,” are more techno-pop-based, yet they’re adorned with Indian sitar and Eastern sonic elements, not unlike some of The Beatles’ tunes of yesteryear. “Abyss” and “Ghost Story,” on the other hand, are more traditionally Indian, featuring indigenous instrumentation such as the bansuri, santoor, veena, tabla, melismatic vocals, and, of course, Shankar’s always evocative sitar. Anoushka’s famous father Ravi Shankar sits in on the two-part epic “Oceanic,” while the album’s A-list of guest artists—among them Sting, Grammy Award-winning composer Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, and Anoushka’s step-sister Norah Jones—provide the icing on the cake.