By Ben Leinbach. White Swan Records; brumbybooks.com.au
Mantra music producer Ben Leinbach is the King Midas of devotional chant; it seems that everything he touches turns into gold. His new album, Sangha (named after the Sanskrit word for community), features premier artists of the modern kirtan community and offers a soulful soundtrack for everyday life.
Leinbach invited the artists—ranging from David Newman to Donna De Lory—to record fresh and reinvented versions of some of their most popular, beloved chants. Then he applied his own mantra-music mojo to create gorgeous, transcendent soundscapes that will appeal to yogis and other spiritual seekers alike. The duo Deva Premal & Miten’s “Om Asatoma” sweetly opens the album and sets a lush tone of devotion, while Kundalini yogi Snatam Kaur’s powerful version of the ancient Sikh mantra “Sat Narayan Waheguru” makes the heart soar. Sangha is a rare gift from the kirtan community, lovingly facilitated by the masterful Leinbach.
Reviewed by Katherine Rae