In August 2012, InFiné suggested a collaboration between French musician Don Niño and Mexican electronic musician and producer Cubenx. At the InFiné Workshop (La Carrière du Normandoux) the two musicians revealed a hypnotising first creation, wrapping ancestral sitar riffs into layers of keyboards and minimalist electronics. This first experience encouraged Don Niño and Cubenx to create the project WE:MANTRA in 2013, further enhanced by the addition of installation artist Antoine Schmitt.
WE:MANTRA combines music and video art. Musically it is centered around the Indian sitar and vintage analog keyboards laid out over electronic minimalist rhythms. The nine “Moods” of traditional Indian music are explored by the musicians during the concert (cosmic, heroic, erotic, fightening, wonderful…) within retro-futuristic mantras. Live visuals by Antoine Schmitt accompany the performances, creating a generative world based on ancestral forms.
Musically, WE:MANTRA is certainly hard to classify. Numerous attempts to crossbreed the Sitar with various genres have been made. Don Niño who has been playing the sitar since his childhood, took the time to select a fistful of tracks that mattered in the shaping of the sound of WE:MANTRA. A journey from Riley to ... Alice Coltrane.
Inspired by this live experience, Antoine developed WE:MANTRA EXPERIENCE out now on the Apple store. WE:MANTRA. A literal translation of the word "mantra" would be "instrument of thought". The music of mantra is particularly well adapted to the concepts of generative music, where music is created on the fly, according to composition rules. The App is available on the Apple Strore ( link !)