Monday, August 22, 2005

Back to normality; Midival Punditz interview

Ack, classes start next week at Lehigh, and there are 20 things I meant to do this summer that aren't done.

Meanwhile, I just did my last Sepia Mutiny post. Phew. Just trying to keep up the pace there totally took over my normal blogging routine.

So for any readers who were slightly miffed that basically everything I've posted here in the past month has been a cross-post, miff no more. I also have some non-South Asia related posts I want to do, though they've been on the backburner since I went 'Sepia'.

Oh, and here's a little link for you: the Midival Punditz, a Delhi-based Asian underground band, were on NPR last week. Here is the interview. Their CD, Midival Times, is readily available in World Music sections in Borders, and on Amazon as well as Itunes. I was listening to it a lot over the weekend, and definitely recommend it.


Suvendra Nath Dutta said...

This is excellent. So now perhaps you can explain to me the meaning of "Bombay's a grid, Delhi Swings".

4:19 PM  
Amardeep said...


I think it's a reference to maps of the cities.

Bombay is more centralized, while Delhi has a river running through it. Delhi is also less concentrated/dense on the whole (less grid-like in the sense of being less tightly ordered).

Similarly, New York's downtown is a grid (with extreme density and lots of skyscrapers in Manhattan), while London swings (with the Thames, and with generally less vertical architecture).

I don't think they mention Paris in that little poem, but if they did, Paris would swing because of the Seine and the low buildings. So would St. Louis and New Orleans. Los Angeles, however, would probably be a grid...

The question might be what to do with cities like San Francisco, which don't have rivers, but which are nevertheless pretty 'swingy'.

Incidentally, they return to this line ("Delhi swings") in the new album at one moment. But this time the poem is much too dense and full of references... need to find the lyrics somewhere (the one disadvantage of buying through ITunes-- you don't get liner notes)

6:10 PM  
Suvendra Nath Dutta said...

Thanks for that excellent explanation. I needed to rely on young nieces and nephews to keep me educated. Now my range of young minds has expanded hugely thanks to the web.

Have you tried the Dashboard widget that shows iTunes lyrics? I think its called Sing that iTune. It won't do Midival Punditz but it searches the web and downloads the lyrics.

9:03 PM  
Nilanjana said...

Well, we miffed you. Nice to see you over at Sepia, but great to have you back.

8:50 AM  
Bhapi Lahiri said...

I never thought about the water references.

I think the "x is a grid, y swings" is in reference to the layout of cities. We all know that planned cities are gridded, almost like on a cartesian plane. In fact, places like NY city so like that that they number off the streets (West 23rd and 14th).

London & Delhi are totally unlike like. The cities are so old that the streets do not run parallel. Anyone whose been to these cities and gotten lost knows exactly what these guys mean. But there's something cool about a city where you can get lost. It's a city that swings.

8:25 AM  
Anonymous said...

new york's downtown isn't a grid.

5:41 PM  

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