The Weight of the Inner World

Lee Negin

Dervish Dharma Dance (Single)

Passing Phase Music, 2015

Review by Kent Manthie                                               Dervish Dharma Dance pic2

Well, just in time for the holidays, another new single by the cosmopolitan Lee Negin, American, by birth and citizen of the world by choice: after spending some time in Seoul for a while, Lee’s recently relocated to Tokyo, from where he’s been busy putting out some new, electronica. Music that, less so than the recently released “Frack Art, Let’s Dance” single, which was, as Negin himself put it “an EDM cut…and I’m not into EDM”. This time around, however, with “Dervish Dharma Dance”, a longer, more hypnogogic experience, running at eight and a half minutes, Lee sort of picks apart; deconstructs, if you like, the whole EDM thing and rebuilds it in a more, well, shall we say “club friendly” way, but in a more mysterious, a little bit darker way, with what hit me as violet-indigo-shaded soundscapes, after listening to it.

Take the title of the song, for instance: “Dervish Dharma Dance”: that conjures up images of an Eastern – more far- and far-southeast Asian styles, as in a pinch of this, a dash of that, a few teaspoons of the mystic and a cupful of the mysterious.

One thing that captivates me is the long running time of this song; instead of suddenly ending (or getting mixed into another tune) just as you’ve finished floating and have gotten a solid foothold on the dance floor, “Dervish Dharma Dance” takes its own sweet time with its near-ultra-violet end of the electromagnetic spectrum, only a fraction of which is visible (to the naked eye) light. The whole concept of sounds giving way to colors or “seeing sounds” and “hearing colors”, a sensation of synaesthesia, often achieved through methods of opening up, expanding or using to a more full degree, your consciousness, whether it be through the help of psychedelics like LSD, yage, mescaline or peyote, a state of deep yogic meditation which is something anyone can achieve, just depending on how hard one works at it and the concentration and practice one puts into it.

Even the title of the song, “Dervish Dharma Dance” has a certain spiritual substance to it. It conjures up images of Sufis in South Asia spinning wildly in their attainment of a religious ecstasy; one that they use to get closer to Allah. But you may enjoy this from the comfort of your own home, in your chair or sofa, maybe with the lights turned low or off. The music has a very sensuous sound to it. It’s a very beautiful song too. A great electro-dreamscape that would be quite fitting to have playing when you’re right in that state when you’re on the cusp of sleep; in that shadowy world, right when your wakeful state metamorphoses into sleep; maybe you could let it become part of your dreamtime if you were to put your player on “repeat”, so that “Dervish Dharma Dance” would continuously play, in a loop. The song would be just right for that too, as it isn’t some pop song, with your typical “verse/chorus/verse” or beginning, middle & end, which would one would think, get to be somewhat repetitious, even to the sleeping mind.  If you’d like to get a glimpse of the video on You Tube of the new single, check out – and see it first.

I could also see this being a great anthem to be part of a live show that would have the audience entranced and in a dance! Feverish fun!! -KM.


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