Newanderthal – and just to confuse you, sometimes also called Orchestre Newanderthal – is a so far mostly occasional music project featuring – well, usually featuring – Ansuman Biswas, Malcolm Darwen, Tom Green, and Haymanot Tesfa, on percussion, bass, array mbira, and vocals, respectively. As a four piece we’ve performed- irregularly- at the Sugar Lounge, Big Chill Festival, and a few other places, and as an anything-from-7-to-11 piece (that’s the Orchestre Newanderthal) on a couple of other occasions, notably a festival in 2012 when we hadn’t even all met each other on any occasion before the performance…

So what does it all sound like ? Depends on who’s turned up, but broadly speaking, ‘acoustic world music’ fits, more specifically India and Ethiopia, but there’s an acoustic bass, jazz/blues guitar, and kora in there as well, at times. So if your taste is for esraj accompanied Ethiopian and Bengali song forms, with mbira patterns derived from Steve Reich, rippling kora, jazz bass, blues guitar, all of it spun along by tablas, hang drum, calabash, and drum kit, then you’ll probably like it. Have a listen to the audio page to find out …

By all means also check this video and you’ll get some idea of how it all started. As a three piece spun off from an ambient dub project with a 16 yr run of gigs at the Big Chill festival. Yes, we know, it’s all a little enigmatic and confusing.

Just like life, don’t you think ?


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