Song of the Day: Manooghi Hi – Kismet

photo by James Bailey

photo by James Bailey (view set)

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday, we deliver songs by local artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Kismet” by Manooghi Hi from their 2009 self-titled, self-released album.

Manooghi Hi – Kismet (MP3)

Did you know that we have a great Indian band right here in Seattle? Manooghi Hi is a unique six-piece band that clashes the sounds of Bombay with the more traditional indie rock approach you would expect in Seattle. The band came together somewhat magically after front-woman Mehnaz Hoosein formed a friendship with blues singer Ava Chakravarti’s daughter. At the time, Mehnaz was already an established pop musician in her native country of India; however, it was this simple friendship that eventually led to her taking the leap Stateside. Once paired with some of Chakravarti’s mates, the Hindi-to-Indie connection was made and Manooghi Hi was formed.

“Kismet” is the opening song and an important theme on their debut album. Kismet actually means “Fate” or “Destiny” and is a great example of the diversity and uniqueness of their sound. It’s certainly different than anything you might have heard before and it’s difficult to visualize the overall vibe of the band without giving it a listen. You might not think rock ‘n’ roll mixes well with a woman scat singing in Hindi, but it works. Manooghi Hi are certainly breaking some new ground, but they seem to have all their “mojo” working. We are lucky to have a band like this in Seattle.

You can read more about the band on their website or listen to additional tracks on their MySpace page. The band has a few Seattle shows scheduled in March. For now, here’s a cool homemade video for “Kismet,” featuring various concert and studio footage:

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  1. Christian Fulghum
    Posted February 2, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    Manooghi Hi is such a delicious combination of sounds and talents. This is the kind of global music I have been waiting for; something greater than the sum of its parts, full of synergy and love.

  2. Posted February 2, 2010 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

    Always so exciting to be on the radio Thanks!!
    One correction, My daughter’s only 9 & not quite a blues singer yet. I have high hopes though:)

  3. Posted February 2, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    It is indeed about time that something this far reaching has come to the local scene. As a supporter (I book them at the venue I book for as much as possible) and fan of the band, I am hopeful they get the audience they deserve. Thanks for playing it. Hope it gets into regular rotation.

  4. Andy Davenhall
    Posted February 2, 2010 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    A great band…

  5. Andrine
    Posted February 2, 2010 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

    Wow! You guys need to play more of this band’s music. If the rest of their music is anything like this, I think it’ll warm up the entire city and get us all dancing and make us all beam and grin. Thank you so much for playing Kismet for our supreme listening pleasure!

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