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Blackstratblues Release Third Album

Mar 19, 12:35pm

Bombay-based blues maestro Blackstratblues recently released his third studio album, The Universe Has A Strange Sense Of Humour, online. We spoke to Warren Mendonsa about the album and his experience writing and recording it.

Bombay-based blues guitar virtuaoso Warren Mendonsa, a.k.a. Blackstratblues, recently released his third album, The Universe Has A Strange Sense Of Humour, online. The eight-track album features Mendonsa contemplating the metaphysics of nature and the intertwining of fate; he told us, “The title refers to the fact that life throws us these little surprises that may not necessarily make sense at the time - a seemingly random set of events. Later on, while looking at them, it seems almost like a perfectly woven plot.”

Mendonsa first started writing the album in 2010, while he was still shuttling between India and New Zealand. “The ideas were in various stages of completion,” Mendonsa told us, “From very basic one-guitar recordings in my phone, to fully orchestrated demos like on the title track. In fact, the final recording is pretty much the demo I recorded in my bedroom, with Karsh's drums overdubbed later in the studio. I started the recording process by the time I had moved back to India for good, in July 2012.” The recording and the mixing had to be put on hold after Mendonsa first started, because of proffesional commitments. The album was recorded at Aslam’s Studio in Mumbai, featuring collaborations with artists like Karsh Kale [drums], Jai Row Kavi [drums], Nikhil D’souza [vocals], an iPad, and many more. “Overall I think the album sounds a bit less chilled out,” Mondonsa told us [laughing], “This was also the first Blackstratblues album that was recorded in India, and I think living in a city like Bombay (and NYC in Karsh's case) definitely adds a bit of edge to a musician's playing. There's no way you can live amongst the madness and not let it get to you in some way. I spent my first 25 years in this city, and in a lot of ways it was great re-connecting with my roots after having been away for a while.”

Blackstratblues’s first album launch gig for The Universe Has A Strange Sense Of Humour was at The Humming Tree in Bangalore on March 14, with the second today in Mumbai. Mendonsa is also working on tentative launches in Pune, Delhi, Kolkata, and Goa. “We've seen a spurt in gigging over the last year,” Mendonsa told us, “And hope to build on that with the album release. There are also plans to release a box set of all three albums. People have been asking for physical copies ever since the first album since the music has only been available online till date.”  

Download The Universe Has A Strange Sense Of Humour by Blackstratblues on OKListen here.

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