On the heels of Mickey Hart’s acclaimed Global Drum Project album comes The Mickey Hart Collection, a series focusing on landmark world music albums masterminded by the Grateful Dead percussionist. Diga, by the Diga Rhythm Band, was originally released on The Grateful Dead’s label in 1976, was the first collaboration between Mickey Hart and Zakir Hussain, and can be seen as the first step on the road to Planet Drum. Diga is a classic world-music album in its own right, with special guest Jerry Garcia on two tracks.
This album has a universal appeal. It's infectious with its rhythms; you'll find yourself spontaneously moving with the beat. The thematic flow from start to end makes you want to listen to the album in its entirety. Fans of the Grateful Dead will love it for its experimental flavor and the Robert Hunter lyrics. It's one of the first real new works to come out of the Dead family in years and may end up being Mickey Hart's best solo work so far.
Hart's constant groove exploration and "infinite universe" attitude keep the music mysterious, if not tremendous.
The music itself is fabulous, compelling and complex.
the songs, about half with lyrics by Dead lyricist Robert Hunter, take off for the heavens because of the stellar playing, production, solid melodies and a vibrant approach that makes every track shimmer.
This is one of the most innovative and interesting albums I have heard in a long time. Mickey and his awesome band break new musical ground and show us the future of music.