Call for Music Critics and Essayists: If you're a smart, historically-minded music critic or essayist, let your voice be heard by our quality readership.
Call for Music Critics and Essayists: If you're a smart, historically-minded music critic or essayist, let your voice be heard by our quality readership.
APPLY HERE APPLY HERE
APPLY HERE APPLY HERE

Doug Cox & Salil Bhatt: Slide to Freedom 2: Make a Better World

Doug Cox/Salil Bhatt
Slide to Freedom 2: Make a Better World
Northern Blues
2009-03-31

Slide To Freedom 2: Make a Better World is an album of mingled slide guitars: One played by a Canadian, the other by an Indian. Salil Bhatt’s instrument, the Mohan Veena, is a modified 20-string variant pioneered by his pandit father, V.M. Bhatt, who makes a guest appearance. There is singing from New Orleans Cajun/soulsman John Boutté and an expressive tabla courtesy of Ramkumar Mishra. The ethereal diffusions of the classical Indian sitar get a fine grounding from the North American blues-groove. Slide to Freedom 2 is at its strongest when the two cultures are pulling together, and enjoyment could be had until Boutté appeared, urging us all to join hands because, “Wouldn’t it be a pleasant sight to see … the world full of happiness.” His voice, in contrast to the slim zing of the strings, seems grating, and his sentiments have been said before. International hand-holding harmony is there in the instruments. There was no need to underline it with words.

RATING 5 / 10
PopMatters