Review | Songlines

Time Does Not Exist for Light

Rating: ★★★★

View album and artist details

Album and Artist Details


Josh Feinberg


Worlds Within Worlds


One shouldn’t have to begin by pointing out that sitar player Josh Feinberg is American, but non-Indian sitarists of this quality are very few and this is a remarkable recording by any account. ‘Raga Purbi’ (or Purvi) with which he opens is a rare and poetic one; its narrow intervals and unpredictable turns make the opening 15-minute alap mysterious and absorbing. The faster sections that follow, accompanied by the excellent British-based tabla player Shahbaz Hussain, are light, nimble and airborne. He follows with a piece in the more calm, melodious and expansive ‘Raga Shree’ and closes with ‘Mishra Kafi’, an evening raga, which was a favourite of Nikhil Banerjee, who’s clearly been an inspiration.

Feinberg, based in Portland, Oregon, studied with Ali Akbar Khan among others, and sounds like a fine disciple. He says: ‘We don’t question any longer if someone from anywhere in the world can be a great guitarist or violinist, and it is my dharma to bring that same open-minded understanding to the sitar.’ This album is clearly another step in that direction. It’s a performance I can imagine coming back to many times.

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