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The Bombay Royale
- You Me Bullets Love

Increasingly there’s something of a faux world music scene happening in Melbourne, though few do it with as much exuberance and inventiveness as The Bombay Royale.

Apr 4th 2012 | Label: HopeStreet
It makes sense that a Melbourne outfit in thrall of Bollywood excess, both musically and visually, would pit their debut longplayer as the soundtrack to a fantastical Bollywood romp. Over the past few years this mysterious, masked nine-piece (plus singers) have been honing their sense of the dramatic, of the exotic and the majestically kitsch around town. We're talking surf guitar melding into jazz, exotica and rockabilly, with searing synth injections and of course the more traditional sitar, mandolin and tabla. Live they're a party machine who play up the more fun and kitsch elements of their sound, yet this recording adds extra depth where you can ignore the theatrics and hone in on the musicality, the strange genre mashes and wacky compositional decisions. 

With a three-piece string section, big beautiful brass, and those ultra funky basslines, if you close your eyes you're knee deep in curried funk, thanks in the main to vocalists Parvyn Kaur Singh and Shourov Bhattacharya, who both sing in Hindi. Their interplay in particular provides much of the narrative to the music. That said, the opening track, Monkey Fight Snake, an instrumental, is an epic that initially sounds like garage rock until these descending horns blast the tune apart, opening up room for the tabla. Just when you think you have the tune worked out it moves into very strange mariachi/Morricone territory.

Increasingly there's something of a faux world music scene happening in Melbourne, though few do it with as much exuberance and inventiveness as The Bombay Royale.

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Dates

Saturday 2nd May

The Bombay Royale + Sex On Toast

The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood

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