Relix review: Red Baraat "Sound the People"

Percussionist and bandleader Sunny Jain elevates his pounding bhangra band Red Baraat to a more nuanced and artistically sophisticated space on Sound the People. In its new stripped-down sextet format, with hotshots like guitarist Jonathan Goldberger adding new dimensions of sonic info, the loud, raucous Punjabi wedding music of the group’s earlier albums takes on extra wit, smarts and gravitas. The rapper Heems speaks for all immigrants in the title track’s call to arms, and the luxurious acoustic meditation and universalist verses of “Vibrations” are echoed later in the album by comedian John Hodgman during colonialist critique “Punjaub March.”

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