“We call them ‘sonic ragas’,” says Jerry Adler, guitarist in Arranged Marriage NP. Adler (who is also the singer and guitarist in Wave Sleep Wave, The Blam, and Flugente) and sitarist Mustafa Bhagat (who plays in the traditional Indian music duo Biryani Boys) are creating unlikely, adventurous, and compelling music.
“A raga is basically a modal framework for improvised composition,” Mustafa explains. “In other words, you have a certain set of rules relating to what scale is played, tempo, etc., and then each player creates his interpretation of that raga right there in the moment. Often a melodic header is established at the beginning, like in jazz, and then the piece unfolds from there.”
But that is only the jumping off point for Arranged Marriage NP. The other half of this partnership is a whirling, pulsing, sometimes screeching mass created by Adler with guitar, a small city of effects pedals, loopers, and a portable synth; layers upon layers of sound sewn through and around the sitar.
“We’re not bringing the sitar into a Western context or anything similarly contrived,” Jerry says. “We’re simply using the languages we know to speak with one another and whoever else up or out there might be listening. We’re just two friends having a very odd conversation.”
The digital album will be released March 17, 2017 on Team Love, along with a limited edition vinyl pressing.
Preorder via TL Bandcamp