Atlanta's expansive, World Rock group Janah will be pulling though town this week in support of their genre-melding new CD, World That Surrounds You (Rattlesby Records). The band's mix is unique, though you may recognize some of the ingredients. Singer/guitarist Keith Johnston shares a soaring croon with U2's Bono, and the band uses a broad base of "imported" instruments, including everything from the sitar and tablas to the didgerido and the bodhran. While the worldly rhythms and chant-like hooks play a big part in the mystique and exotic quality of the band's music, they are still very much a Rock band with Pop sensibilities, avoiding precious New Age tendencies and at times recalling Peter Gabriel's explorations of the World Music realm or Robert Plant's stabs at modernizing Middle Eastern music. Janah's mystical gumbo transfers well to CD, but live is where the band is supposed to really impress. Janah apparently knows a thing or two about "presence," which, coupled with the rich, large sound of their wall of grooves and melody, should prove to be an uplifting experience.
At the Mad Frog on Thursday.