Almas Buenas by Drongomala (Release Date 20th Oct 2010) English Blog

Almas Buenas – Drongomala -Lanzamiento 20th Oct 2010 (Español)

Goodbye Anoop

This recording is in memory of my good friend Anoop who was lost on 13th May 2009. (listen on Soundcloud)

The Deccan Herald in India reported it like this:

35-year-old man from Kerala was found dead on the railway tracks here on Wednesday. The Railway police are yet unable to ascertain if it was case of an accident or a suicide.

The train ran over Anup Adityan, a native of Thrissur in Kerala between the Elagi and Anekal Railway stations in Byapanahalli division limits.

He had booked two private bus tickets from Sangli to Bangalore, and from Bangalore to Thrissur. “It is not clear what he was doing on
the railway tracks. His family members have arrived in the City to collect the body,” said a top GRP official. The post-mortem was completed at Bowring Hospital on Thursday afternoon. The accident would have taken place around 9.30 am, the sources said.

Adityan had just completed his education in London and was keen on setting up an old age home in Bangalore, police added.
It doesn’t tell you anything much about him. He was a bright soul with a good heart but a troubled mind. We mostly talked about art and politics and his indexing of facts and figures was close to photographic memory ability. Up until I met him I hadn’t known Carnatic classical music much beyond one or two names. Anoop opened me up to the richness of the South of India and her traditions when most of what I was listening to was from the Northern tradition of Hindustani.

He set me up with the musicians for this recording which took place around 10 years back. It was with a young singer who went by Vamsi Das (Vamshikrishna Vishnudas) and had a wonderful tone and authority in his voice beyond his years. The songs were a mixture of light classical and folk tunes. We recorded on my mobile setup in the living room and hall of a semi in Maidenhead, England, UK and got the whole record done in a day.
Afterwards when I went to Kerala to record Scale is was he who provided me with contacts and information to insulate the impact of trying to run a studio in the middle of the jungle. He put his name on the line for the crazy foreigner.
The last time I saw him we were lying on the grass looking up at the stars during a suprise warm night for Manchester.
He left his book called ‘An Encyclopedia of Symbols’ that night.
BUY OPTIONS
Buy from CD Baby

Goodbye USA

Goodbye UK

Available from all iTunes stores by searching for ‘Vamsi Das’ or ‘Goodbye Anoop’

Edinburgh, Magrite and how the cover of ‘Garden With You’ came to be

As a teenager I mostly grew up in Cowdenbeath and Dunfermline and would always be excited when I could somehow get across the Forth Rail Bridge to see Edinburgh the capital of Scotland.
Over the years I developed regular haunts and one of them I indulged regularly was a visit to the Modern Art Gallery in Edinburgh. The collections didn’t change a huge amount but I just liked the building, the setting and the mood it put me in when I was there. I
was/am big on the surrealists and they had plenty of good content in that direction.

Time passed since then and in May of this year (2010) I was experimenting with different ideas for imagery for a single I was completing. I was in Argentina recording another album and was completing the artwork and remixes for this other single – ‘(When You Go You Take The) Garden With You’.

As the single was a dance single I thought that I could try a geometric idea and keep it simple in the way the imagery of electronic dance music often translates the music maths of sine waves and frequencies to their artwork.
I thought of a green triangle simply communicating the pubis of a woman but it was boring when mocked up and the idea had been done before. Then I thought of cutting out grass in the shape of a triangle and slowly the idea developed and crystalli
sed when I remembered a wonderful painting by Magrite (Belgian surrealist with a penchant for bowler hats) that used to hang in the back room of the Edinburgh Modern Art Museum. Using the painting as a launchpad I had the specification below for the artist that was going to work on bringing the idea to life.
Here is the mail I sent to the artist….
Specification for ‘Garden With You’ Cover Art

The song title is a reference to a womans body as a garden – specifically her vagina/pubis. The idea for the cover is to have a picture frame shaped like a womans hips and the picture frame to contain green grass with one triangle cut out (like a womans pubic hair shape) showing the brown soil underneath.

There is famous painting by a surrealist
Magritte called La Représentation (1937) that used a picture frame shaped like a womans hips and it would be good to use this shape (not the actual frame) for the picture frame.

I have done a very rough mockup in photoshop to give you an idea but I do not consider it to be anywhere close to a finished piece because :


  • The picture frame is not shown squarely i.e. I used the photo which shows the frame at an angle. I have not taken the frame shape and created a new frame. A new frame shape is needed not a photograph using wood or branches for the frame
  • The grass is not attractive enough (I used quick stock footage photo) and is in much too low a resolution. The grass should be rich, green, natural and shown from an aerial view.
  • The soil is not rich and warm or complementary to the colour of the grass. The triangle should look like it has been cut out of the grass.- the pubis triangle shape could look more like a womans pubic hair
  • Proportions are not correct and the elements do not look like they belong in the same composition
  • It doesn’t look sexual or erotic

It should be immediately clear to viewers that the picture is a representation of a womans hips and pubis using grass/soil and natural elements.



And this is what Santiago Carosella managed to come back with exceeding my expectations by some margin.

Single is available now directly from drongomala.com and also available from iTunes and other online shops around July/Aug 2010.
More exciting artwork coming for Almas Buenas, a record recently finished in Buenos Aires due out later in the UK summer.

Sergio Carrera (graphic artist) interview (in Spanish) during Almas Buen…

http://www.youtube.com/v/DJC0EKCkNmk&hl=en_US&fs=1

Matías Chapiro (piano) Interview (in Spanish) during recording of Almas …

http://www.youtube.com/v/IakZyQk7YwY&hl=en_US&fs=1

Carlos Corrales (Bandoneón) profile during Almas Buenas Recording 2.mov

http://www.youtube.com/v/pv58CUyT4N0&hl=en_US&fs=1