by Xristopher Bland
Droppin’ It Low ‘n Slow With Delhi 2 Dublin Where dance has been the vital blood pressure of music since some prehistoric drummer caused the first tail feather to shake by rhythmically beating on a hollow log (or, perhaps, a friend’s head), Vancouver world music band Delhi 2 Dublin dials that pulse to “TumbiWOW,” the first video and song from the band’s forthcoming album Low ‘n Slow (slated for August 21, 2015).
Formed in 2006 by Tarun Nayar, Sanjay Seran and Ravi Binning for a performance at the Vancouver Celtic Festival, D2B uniquely fuses Celtic and Bhangra musical traditions (hence the band’s name) with the rave-pulse energy of a neon-washed club at midnight. If there’s a message in their music, it’s arguably “Turn Up the Stereo,” the title track from their 2012 album by the same name, and where fans have answered that call across North America and Europe at what might be best described as D2B multi-cultural dance-party concert celebrations, the band lays down the funk in its newest outing.
(And cue the gratuitous aside to Parliament's "We Want the Funk": “We need the funk / We gotta have the funk / Ow!")
From the curved font and muted-mustard color selections for the band’s Low ‘n Slow Facebook banner graphic to the thumping bass-line drive of “TumbiWOW” and follow-up release “Low ‘n Slow,” everything harkens to a distinctly 1970s funk vibe that blends infectiously with D2B’s overlays of old-school Bollywood, electronica and more—with “more” being fan inclusion. Where some bands simply head off to a studio to produce an album before hitting the promotional trail, D2B is taking a different approach by involving fans in the process. By pre-ordering Low ‘n Slow through PledgeMusic, fans can get their hands on limited merchandise like unreleased singles and videos, and can interact with the band on a creative level. As D2B says on the PledgeMusic site, “Heck, we’ll even whip up a bhangra version of a song—any song—of your choice!”
(Hmmm... perhaps a showy, Bollywood-style rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody”?)
Though ‘70s-style funk stands focused in Low ‘n Slow’s two musical releases, the accompanying videos, though entertaining and creative, are something of a stylistic imagining. In “Low ‘n Slow” dance-show segments reminiscent of the Soul Train TV show, headbands and crocheted clothing definitely point to the 1960s (which was but whispering fashion-wise in the ‘70s). And in a humorous video for “TumbiWOW” that centers on a big-money ping-pong match, the clothes, shot style and storyline-driven visuals echo the look and feel of 1980s videos, and have a few continuity problems. (Look for the Mardi Gras beads appearing then disappearing then reappearing on the match referee, as well as the random astronaut.) Yet as the essence of celebration has naturally never been about taking things too seriously, it’s perhaps best to take the videos for what they are—entertaining and imaginative creations from an equally entertaining and imaginative band that knows the heartbeat of dance and pretty much puts jumper cables to it in recording and live performance.
Currently on tour, Delhi 2 Delhi 2 Dublin reached #3 on the Canadian world music charts in December, 2007, with their self-titled debut album, and have toured extensively across Canada and Europe in major cities and at small community-based festivals.
*To pre-order Low ‘n Slow, visit: http://www.pledgemusic.com/delhi2dublin.
D2B on YouTube:
“Low 'n Slow” YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_AtpSGOOZh0