on 28 January 2002
What an album! When i saw it, i thought it would just be another serious of various dhol beats. But in fact it's up there with the likes of Nitin Sawhney and Talvin Singh. One of the best albums of the year and a must for everyone, no matter who you are. Kalsi and the others have done a great job here.
on 17 May 2006
Buy tons of copies and give them to all of your friends. They will love you for it.
I accidentally found The Dhol Foundation's "Big Drum, Small World" album a few years ago in a store and have listened to it thousands of times. I always keep this CD in my car and it is the one reliable album that I can ALWAYS enjoy.
I love how even though each track is so awesome, even the entire package is so well put - it seems like it's one long track, but it's actually the well-thought approach wherein each song opens tying in perfectly with the preceding song.
Such harmony in perfect balance!
on 19 December 2001
I saw this in my local music store and checked it out against the 2 previous reviews here before buying it. Now I have it I have to agree. Its right up there with Transglobal Underground's 'Dream of 100 nations' and Afro Celt Sound System's latest as being the best examples of dance-oriented 'ethic fusion'. For me the standout track is 'Drummers Reel' with a massive great dhol drumming ensemble that needs to be heard loud.There's a perfect balance between electronica and real instruments to give it a warm yet contemporary feel. If you like TGU and ACSS this is right up your street and I'd also go as far to say that its far superior to stuff from Fundamental and Asian Dub Foundation, while also lacking the cheesiness of some westernised bangra....
on 22 October 2001
Given his background, you might have expected Johnny Kalsi to have produced a CD very much based on the active bhangra scene. But this CD will be a real, and very pleasing, shock. I was stunned by the instrumentation, arrangements and the shear breadth of music encompassed. World music has become a bit stale and stereotyped but this should revive your faith that musical styles can come together and produce something fresh and extremely interesting. The best CD I've bought in 2001!
on 2 November 2004
This is good.
A couple of the tunes are a waste of time, the others are really good, with plenty of energy and feeling. When you listen to the title tune, 'Big Drum Small World', you can just *hear* how much fun they had making it, and you will be tapping your feet like mad with a big grin across your face.
The first tune, 'Eik Din', is a very piercing, moving song, despite containing a few wayward parts/samples. The rest of the album doesn't manage to find the same depth again.
In general, a bit heavy on the synths, and light on the decent beats. Some really nice samples of indian instruments. Many of the pieces are a bit slow though. It's all high quality, but there is not really enough dancing going on. Four sitars out of five.