Press Clipping
7 Billion Kiran Ahluwalia Independent KM2018 (

Steeped in the vocal traditions of India and Pakistan,
Kiran Ahluwalia has, in the course of six albums,
restlessly explored world music genres featuring
collaborations with Celtic fiddler Natalie MacMaster,
Malian group Tinariwen, Portuguese fado
masters and jazz guitarist Rez Abbasi. Her
discs have garnered her two JUNO Awards
and other significant accolades.
Over six songs, with music and lyrics
by Ahluwalia, 7 Billion explores yet more
musical crossroads in search of the human
condition with the help of her five-piece band
of electric guitar, electric bass, keyboards,
tabla and drum kit. “When you take different
styles and merge them together… then you’re
really developing a new hybrid genre,”
Ahluwalia says. “For me it’s important to
blur the musical boundaries between my
Indian background, influences from Western
sounds and… Mali. It’s incredibly invigorating
when I feel a connection in expressions
from different cultures and then figure
out ways to connect them seamlessly in my
music,” she states. Her lyrics speak of realizing
female desire without shame, the perils
of love, and raging against the institutionalization
of religion.
Recorded in a Toronto studio, Ahluwalia’s
We Sinful Women caps the album. Its
lyrics use a 1991 Urdu feminist poem by
Kishwar Naheed (translated by Rukhsana
Ahmad, the Pakistani novelist, playwright
and poet). A powerful indictment of male
oppression of women, it’s also a rocker
with a hook-y chorus, with room to feature
driving jazz breaks by electric guitarist
Abbasi and organist Louis Simao. It’s worth
another listen