Indiaa��s first ska band on their new album, socio-political lyrics and the upcomingA� UK tour.
From songs aimed to taunt the nationa��s prime minister to performing for 2,000 inmates at Tihar Jail, The Ska Vengers have always been anti-establishment. Now that the Delhi-based jazz/rocksteady/punk/ska outfit has conquered Indiaa��s soundscapea��from Varkala beach (in Kerala) to Haus Khas Villagea��they are poised to go global, with new tunes from their sophomore album XX (pronounced double cross). We catch up with the sexteta��Stefan Kaye (keys), Begum X aka Samara Chopra (vocals), Taru Dalmia aka Delhi Sultanate (vocals), Chaitanya Bhalla (guitars), Tony Guinard (bass) and Nikhil Vasudevan (drums)a��prior to their gig at The Humming Tree, Bengaluru, tomorrow. a�?When you listen to this album, the music on it is very diverse and ita��s quite sonically rich. These things take time,a�? explains Dalmia, on why it took them three years. Lyrically, therea��s much more political commentary on the newer tracks. This is apparent from their firebrand form of Indo-Afro-Carribean rebel music. The aural crux of XX comprises the afro-beat infused Double X (written in Telangana after a meeting with famed activist-tuned-poet Gaddar) and hip-hop sounds in Frank Brazil (on the life and trial of revolutionary, Udham Singh). With over 15 gigs on their UK tour (July 23-September 11), the seven-year-old band will be playingA� at Boomtown (Hampshire) and Hootenany (Brixton).a�?Indians playing Jamaican-influenced music in the British Isles!a�? laughs Dalmia.
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a�� Anoop Menon