Psychedelic Trance Blues from Siberia

KhaRa – Meryachenie

ХаPа [KhaRa] – “Мерячение” [Meryachenie] (Sketis Music SKMR-125, 2016)

KhaRa ia an exciting genre-defying Siberian trio that combines blues jams, shamanic percussion, Slavic melodies and instruments, and psychedelic electronic effects. The overall result is a satisfying and fascinating trance-like effect.

The ensemble’s name Khara means Smile of God in Old Slavic. The album name Meryachenie describes an unusual mental state associated with shamans and northern magic in the language of the northern peoples. The Eskimos call it the call of the North Star.

Guitarist Alexander Medvedev indicates that even though the three musicians had discussed making this recording for a long time, Meryachenie was recorded in a single day. Everyone contributed what they saw fit. “We just completely disconnected from reality and played.”

KhaRa features the vocals and traditional wind and string instruments of Edward Pogodin, a musician and craftsman that builds his own musical instruments based on traditional Russian instruments. Alexander Medvedev delivers blues improvisations and spellbinding electronic vocals through a talk box (a sort of vocoder for the electric guitar) that transforms the guitar and vocals into a throat singing effect. Artem Aksenov provides the beats using the large Tuvan frame drum called kengirge as well as other percussion instruments.

The lineup on Meryachenie includes Edward Pogodin (Эдуард Погодин) on vocals, kalyuka (overtone flute) and other instruments; Alexander Medvedev (Александр Медведев) on guitar, talk box vocals, MIDI; and Artem Aksenov (Артем Аксенов) on kengirge and percussion.

Buy the digital download version of Мерячение

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.

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