"Dear Hans and Kim:
Thanks again - another outstanding recording! Your latest CD (Temple Of Love) complements your ongoing tributes to Sri Krsna, Lord Chaitanya, Srila Prabhupada and India. Favorites initially and continue to be Adaram Madhuram, Srita Kamala and He Krishna. Kim's voice is absolutely beautiful and the music, instruments and percussion are fantastic, without parallel.
I experience unparalleled sweetness and bliss on a daily basis when hearing these transcendental songs of devotion.
I hope the tour is meeting with great success.
Grateful appreciation from a devoted fan".
R. Smith, Salt Lake City
"Dear Hans and Kim:
I have been a long time fan of Rasa, and just wanted to write to express my appreciation for the wonderful music you have been creating for all of us in these very troubled times. I am particularly impressed with the newer bolder directions your music takes with each release, and this is very much evident in your latest offering "Shelter", my pick for the best Rasa CD so far. A new Rasa CD to me has become a blind purchase. I know the soulful heartfelt renderings of Bhajans set amidst haunting cello melodies will immediately sooth any stresses and help me focus inward.
Keep them coming, and I promise I will keep listening.
Best Wishes and Thank You!
Saffron Blue November 5, 2009 review by DailyOm
A class act in the emerging genre of chant, Rasa are in a class by themselves, bridging gaps between classical, spiritual, Kundalini-kindling eastern modalities, and deep-seated chill-out electronica. Guided by instrumentalistcomposer Hans Christian and classically trained vocalist Kim Waters, Rasa have set the bar consistently high and Saffron Blue finds them at a creative peak, including guest vocalists from around the world, and a dazzling array of eastern and western instrumentation and production. Tracks move in stately inexorable patterns from minimalist meditative drones to sweeping orchestral crescendos, with Waters voice supplying an aching feeling of yearning and hope that her nurturing warm voice makes bearable. With each song, Rasa reaches for new heights even as they renew their ties to the old and ancient traditions from both sides of the globe, all the way up to the heavens and all the way to the earth's core. As Christian plays everything from the sitar, bass, and violin, Waters ably sings in an array of languages and styles, evoking an archaic, maternal soul vibe you can feel tingling up the nape of your neck.
After a blistering opening replete with world music voices, Rasa settles into a smooth, healing groove for "Madhava Murari," an ancient kirtan with a full orchestra of world percussion, sarangi (Indian violin), and a funky running bass alongside Waters' impassioned vocals. "Sitara Dreams" features a pulsing tamboura that wakens a sitar from single notes to frenzied melodics. The climactic track is "Vande Krishna," wherein Waters' vocal stirring a deep sense of sensual Celtic longing over ominous rattles and a moody carafe of world strings: moody, slow to get started, and then once it's started unstoppable in its healing force.
Whether youre dancing in a dark room where perfumed candles throw the shadows of you and your partner on the wall in weird distortions that evoke timeless archaic memories, or you're just meditating before a candle, doing your homework, making love, or dancing around, the rooted sense of ethereal striving that suffuses Saffron Blue will open you deeper to the mystery while soothing your nerves and enflaming your senses. Rasa knows what they're doing and Saffron Blue is a sterling example of world chant done with class, intensity, and a soul-enriching sincerity, with Waters' feminine warmth flowing over it all like a soft handwoven blanket.
Temple Of Love
February 2006 review by John Diliberto, host of the syndicated radio program Echoes,
With yoga studios sprouting on every corner, Vedic chants of India have been growing in popularity over the years. The west first heard these songs in the 1960s when the Hare Krishna sect started popping up on urban streets, banging tambourines and chanting "Hare Krishna." In 1970, George Harrison revealed a different sonic possibility when he produced an album by the Radha Krsna Temple that spawned the FM hit, "Govinda." Harrison added orchestra, sitars, and percussion to chants that were previously sung barely in tune with spartan instrumentation.
Rasa were among the first to take this concept further. Their early albums were highly rhythmic affairs with Hans Christian's percussion loops driving orchestrations of synthesizers, sarangi, nyckelharpa, and cello. Floating over it all was singer Kim Waters, whose serene voice provided easy entry into these Hindi sacred hymns. Kim Waters pitches her smokey alto between the sacred and the sensual, articulating the Sanskrit texts in gentle and embracing waves.
TEMPLE OF LOVE continues this theme, though on an even more contemplative level. Perhaps coming off his solo album of classical cello works, LIGHT & SPIRIT, Christian has opted for a more placid soundscape that recalls classical adagios as much as Indian ragas. Songs like the opening "Jaya Radhe" have lovely, Samuel Barberesque adagios in the middle while "Sundara Mor" evokes ECM jazz reveries with slow-drip vibraphone and swooning cello. "Parama Karuna" is a heaven-sent lullaby that drifts into the ether over a slow, languid drone.
But Rasa doesn't completely leave the grooves behind. "Doya Koro" and "Om Purnam" get into slow trance rhythms with Christian mixing electronic loops and Indian hand percussion.
"The new album is AB-so-lute-ly GOR-geous! It's really rare for any artist to improve and deepen as they go, but you are defying the odds. Kim sounds completely confident and relaxed and the vocals have an even more satisfying quality as a result. The production is ingenious in developing the material and the instrumental textures. All in all, it's your best work yet, which is really saying something. I wish you great success with it." Stephen Hill- radio host, Hearts Of Space, www.hos.com
"This dream music invokes the highest emotions of peace, harmony, and devotion. Hans great sarangi, sitara, and cello arrangements are superb while Kims voice comes from another dimension... Frank Serafine- composer, producer, Los Angeles, www.frankserafine.com
Shelter 2003 reviews/quotes
Amazon.com Rarely have prayers to Krishna sounded so serene and so sensual at the same time. This is the fourth album from Rasa, the duo of singer Kim Waters and multi-instrumentalist Hans Christian. Overall, there's little to differentiate this disc from the other three. Waters sings Indian chants and prayers in a voice that is soothing and serene, like velvet smoke curling around these adapted melodies. Using sophisticated programming, cello, electric bass, Indian sarangi, and Swedish nyckelharpa, Christian embeds her voice in translucent layers. Each time he touches an instrument, adding it to his textured arrangements, it's like unlocking the key to a serpentine journey. He also brings the rhythms slightly to the fore, reinforcing the tablas of Girish Gambhira with subtle electronica grooves. But there's no thud-thud, four-on-the-floor sell-out to a dance music subset. Waters's voice is so serene and the grooves so relentlessly languid that Shelter becomes like a long bath. Soothing, even enlightening, but the skin gets wrinkled if you stay with it too long. --John Diliberto
"The sound of RASA is unlike anything you've ever heard... Sensual vocals and soaring cello and sarangi swirls weave a sacred tunic of devotional love songs in Bengali and Sanskrit. Shelter maps a voyage towards spirit with it's irresistible melodies, luscious grooves and soulful performances. You are invited to embark on a journey to the transcendental realm..."-- New Earth Records catalog
In Concert 2002 reviews/quotes
ORACLE 20/20 "For sheer elegant listening pleasure, you'll be pleased to discover RASA In Concert if you've not heard of them before. I've reviewed the earlier albums by the husband and wife duo of Hans Christian and Kim Waters. The two are magical together, and if you needed confirmation that the talent is real not just studio trickery, this is a live album. The couple has invested the time and energy to master the art of singing ancient Indian songs. These are not chants, like the ones mentioned above; they are songs based in the spiritual practices of the Hindus. It is sweet to hear Waters' voice wrap itself around classic poetry, even if it's not in English. Christian offers impeccably smooth support on the cello, sarangi, bass, keyboards and other instruments. The CD jacket includes notes to set the mood and tone for each song, but listening is its own reward. Could this be suitable for healing or bodywork? Yes. These are very heart opening sounds."
Dan Liss, Editor of Oracle 20/20
Amazon.com "Rasa in Concert finds classically trained cellist Hans Christian and aptly named vocalist Kim Waters putting forth 74 minutes of the folksy East meets West sacred melody the duo popularized with their stellar contributions to New Age and world music: Devotion and Union. Drawing from the best-loved songs on those albums, Rasa render their devotional bhajans warm and wonderful, sage and spirited. Live (with applause edited out), musical prayers such as "Mama Mandire" take on a looseness and sense of immediacy without losing the spot-on marriage of skill and emotional depth listeners have come to expect from Rasa's studio recordings. A bonus to this collection is the inspirational (and previously unrecorded) "Prabhupada Padma." Not just for completists, Rasa in Concert is a sensual offering, a blessing to the ears of listeners old and new." --Paige La Grone Babcock
Union 2001 reviews/quotes
Amazon.com: Best New Age CD of the Year 2001: #1 Union
"Union, the follow-up to Rasa's stunning debut, Devotion, finds the intriguing duo taking the next logical step by updating traditional Sanskrit and Bengali prayers. These timeless texts are fleshed out with vocalist Kim Waters' sensual tones wending round Hans Christian's soulful cello leads, which are in turn complemented by understated keyboards, guitars, drums, and percussion. The album's thematic and emotional center is found in the deeply reverent "Sri Guru." An 11-minute supplication, the composition builds on gently looped vocals and shakers to burst forth as a full band swirl of elegant, sublime sound featuring flute, ambient percussion, and mouth harp. Reveling in textural earthly arrangements, Rasa makes music for the body as well as the spirit."
Paige La Grone, Amazon.com
"Well titled, this recording offers many layers of unity. Foremost is the unity between the two artists, Kim Waters and Hans Christian; their music reveals a genuine reverence for one another. Entwined with this is an instrumental/vocal unity: Waters' voice, clear and pure, blends with Christian's instrumentation, each note dancing delicately off the next. There is also a unity between the musicians and the divine a connection to spirit, and expression of the bond between physical and spiritual worlds. Unity of the past and the present is unveiled as well, in the chants singing praise to deities of ancient cultures. Lastly, there is a global unity: Western ears will recognize the melodies, yet the chants connect to an ancient Vedic culture and thousands-of-years-old tradition. Many talented musicians add percussion, keyboards, and ambient textures to Christian's ancient and modern string instruments and Waters' vocals. This Union successfully spans time and place."-- NAPRA magazine
Devotion 2000 reviews/quotes
Amazon.com: Best New Age CD of the Year 2000: #1 Devotion
April 2000 review by John Diliberto for Amazon.com: "Between their name, the album title, and the cover art of embracing lovers done in that flat-perspective, Indian style of painting, Rasa's Devotion looks like one of those New Age Indian sacred chant albums, and in a way it is. But Indian devotional music has rarely sounded this sensual. These are traditional songs, but performed in a modern, world-fusion style. Singer Kim Waters intones these hymns in a breathy, embracing soprano, falling through these ancient melodies like silk running through your fingers. Her voice is surrounded by lush arrangements from Hans Christian who plays cello, sarangi (Indian violin), sitara (small sitar), and Swedish keyed fiddle, echoing Waters's melodies with serpentine refrains. With help from percussionist Greg Ellis of Vas, pianist Ira Stein, and a host of Indian musicians, Rasa attains the meaning of their Sanskrit name, which loosely translates as "essence." John Diliberto
Amazon.com's Best of 2000 While an assortment of artists sing in wordless phrases dictated by their muses, Kim Waters and Hans Christian of Rasa turn to ancient Indian devotional texts for vocal inspiration. With accompaniment from cello, sarangi (Indian violin), and sitara, the duo puts forth an exceptional world fusion unheard of in the New Age genre. What's more, there isn't a song on Devotion that falters in form, technique, or ecstasy. The music comes from an undisturbed place, shared with listeners without sentimentality or pretense.-- Karen K. Hugg
The Best New Age CD of 2000- Amazon.com Duo Kim Waters and Hans Christian used ancient Vedic chant to express an inspired music that dips into Indian instrumentation and sounds to create a harmonious world fusion. Track after track on Devotion grows in strength and lush, sacred beauty, making it our top New Age album of the year.
Favorite Yoga Music: #1 Devotion- Amazon.com Fans of Enya and Vas will love Rasas Devotion, a dreamy CD that dips into a well of ancient Indian chant for a beautiful, inspired music. Vocalist Kim Waters brings Sanskrit praise to life while Hans Christian works his magic on the sarangi as tabla and Asian drums beat on.
Lush and spiritual.--Karen K. Hugg