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Review: Susmit Bose’s Flavorful New Double Album ‘Then & Now’

The folk artist treats us to 26 splendid tracks

Sunil Sampat Nov 05, 2020

The album artwork for folk artist Susmit Bose's new album 'Then & Now.'

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★ ★ ★ ★

A release comprising of two albums from Susmit Bose comes as a welcome surprise. Bose, one of India’s first urban folk singers brings his classic 1978 debut album Train to Calcutta coupled with a compilation of his work in recent times. This release consists of 26 originals from Bose from over a 50-year career, 13 from each in Then & Now.

This music is a boon and revelation for the younger generation not familiar with the artist. Bose is from an era when the recording industry in India was indifferent and recording opportunities were not easily available to local artists. Train to Calcutta was popular in both India and Europe but unavailable anywhere in recent years. It sounds relevant even today.

The Now section of the record has some delightful, tongue in cheek lyrics on songs such as “Walking Talking Contradiction” and “Friend of a Friend” as well as a poignant tribute to American folk legend Bob Dylan on “Hey Bob Dylan” in Bose’s Dylanesque style. The others have their own stories to tell. Overall a fresh sound and enjoyable listening.

Stream ‘Then & Now’ on Spotify below:

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