Close your eyes. Imagine walking into a yoga class, the mats laid out on the floor, and students milling about getting ready to start their practice. Let your ears take in the music for a moment, the voices and instruments coming together to create a suitable backdrop for yoga. What did you hear? Gentle, flowing new-age music, perhaps some soft chanting? Think again! Spirit Voyage‘s new release Kundalini Remix: Yoga Mantras Revisited shakes up the yoga music world, and clearly shows that music for yoga can also be hip enough for the clubs. Kundalini Remix is not your momma’s yoga music.
The tracks on Kundalini Remix are spiritual collaborations between esteemed sacred chant artists such as Sat Kartar and GuruGanesha Singh, and powerhouse Djs like DJ Cheb I Sabbah and Desert Dwellers. Djs were given a track and told to tease out the core mantra and see where they could take it. The resulting remixes are hip and energetic takes on Kundalini yoga mantras that maintain their spiritual roots while showcasing each remixer’s unique vision of the track. The beauty of Kundalini Remix is one doesn’t have to be a yogi to appreciate this album. The mantras, while front and center, are supported by interesting and exciting beats that give it a wider appeal.
Cheb I Sabbah has been mixing ethnic and sacred music with chill beats for years, and is truly a master of his craft. He effortlessly maintains the purity of the base track, never allowing it to be overwhelmed or watered down by superfluous accompaniment. For Kundalini Remix he did the unthinkable – he made the beautiful voice of beloved chant artist Snatam Kaur even more sweet. The gentle drum beat and instrumental track on “Mul Mantra (The Sat Nam Remix)” hugs and caresses Snatam’s voice, creating a smooth and entrancing listening experience.
Gurunam Singh is a relatively new presence in the sacred chant community, loved for his velvety voice and powerful devotion. His song “Dukh Par Har” is a musical conversation between himself and his teacher, on the power of mantra. This track was made to be remixed, and Desert Dwellers do a fantastic job of it. Gurunam’s voice floats ethereally atop a sea of sound, made up of a comfortable bass line, hip percussion, and instrumentation that compels you to move. “Dukh Par Har (Desert Dwellers Breaks Remix)” is another fine example of the way a track can be engaged and enhanced through the remixing process.
“Gobinday (Drumspyder Remix)” puts a new twist on the original recording. Mirabai Ceiba, the duo who recorded the base track, are known for their sweetness and for infusing their music with their cultural heritage. The original track has a decidedly Spanish feel, with rhythmic flamenco guitar. Drumspyder stays true to the pacing of the original, layering the voices of Mirabai Ceiba on top of driving percussion. But Drumspyder shows us why his music is loved by belly dancers around the country, with a strong downbeat and layers that beg to be danced.
These are just a few examples of the masterful remixing on Kundalini Remix: Yoga Mantras Revisited. This is music for people who love to move, whether it’s dancing at a club or working up a sweat in a Power Yoga class. Each track was remixed with care, and the resulting album is a testament to the skill of the Djs involved in the project. To hear samples of Kundalini Remix and to learn more about all of the artists featured on the album, go to www.spiritvoyage.com.