Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Late Night Chatters

19 Dec 2014,

It was 9PM when the city bus dropped me at St.John's circle. I had ample time to reach Majestic. It seemed as if flood gates were opened creating surge of motors with beaming head-lamp storming ahead towards respective culmination. Even around 9:15PM, the BMTC buses destined to Majestic were over-crowded with passengers, leaving me in disgusting state. I had to drag for some more time. Eventually at 9:30PM, an unauthorized private bus arrived (may be company bound) with cleaner yelling "Majestic... Majestic" at the crowd. I boarded the bus in hustle and grabbed a seat. The bus was jam packed. With all seats filled up (70 to 80), the crew would be making merry out of the collection while on contrary swallowing revenue of BMTC buses. They were charging Rs.25/- per head. This is everyday story though. The crew would have cashed up enough money to cater their bar bill (No prejudice, just an assumption!). 30 minutes passed, here I am in Majestic. Despite the staggering flow of wagons, the bus managed to reach quite early mainly due to ceaseless service till Majestic.

Old adage states "Idle mind is devil's workshop". For me, it becomes devils' metaphor at night, right in between doze while riding on bus. Especially traveling on BMTC spurs enormous mental chatters along with frustrating metaphors. Being gateway to Bengaluru, the aura of Majestic is ideal place to draw metaphors which combines both legacy and modern faces of brooding city life. The virtual aisles created by parked buses are loathing maze. You never know which way to proceed and when they open doors of hell. As Oliver Emberton here describes life as maze rather than marathon, I tweak slightly as to be dynamic maze. You neither know when it manifests in life nor its volume. Ignorance of such maze will cause disastrous leaks leading to surprise crash at latter point. Unless you free them when its incarnation terminates or you are lucky enough to revisit them for correction, it creates permanent mole in your life.

Back to present after brief boredom, hope you are not stuck in Majestic! Everytime, I set out on journey, I forget two things, namely scribbling pad and spectacle case. Spectacle case is essential for protection while I roll on sleeper bus. The scribbling pad is required to jot down the aforementioned devil's metaphor(s). This time too some of the metaphors were lost due to lack of scribbling pad. Consequently people like me end up hunting for stationary in a condiment stall at bus stand. Nevertheless, I remembered most of them after journey with a loss factor of 25%.

My bus was parked at the designated platform and it was brand new sleeper bus, cleanly maintained with courteous crew. I had booked lower berth to minimize the wobbling during journey. The amount of wobbling is directly proportional to the irregularity of bitumen surface and the elevation of sleep position from the ground (considering ideal suspension and perfect center of gravity design). This is what I call law of wobbling phenomenon. After the ticket check, I lied down on reserved bed and instantly fell asleep. As I set out on mission to land of stars, something intrusive happened. "Sir ladies idaare swalpa melgade berth adjust maadtira" (We have few ladies, could you please shift to upper birth). At the outset, it was annoying and at times I felt, reservation had no meaning. I explained them the law of wobbling but a reply arrived swiftly "Sir Ladies". I usually do not confront in such situations hoping someone would reciprocate the same to my parents (even though my parents never seek!).

We are now migrated to upper berth and honored to have elevated sleep which is not fun at all. Despite the perfect center of gravity design of bus, the conditions of road requires certain dynamic corrections to balance out the tremors. This is impossible to achieve in body design and imperatively offloaded to humans to balance. This also means eluded sleep for this night. Rather than sleep, its state of hibernation which means we wake up to similar state as previous night rather than refreshed one! With this setup, stars will be revolving around me.

That's end of short praeludium to my journey to Shimoga. I am not sure as how many more ramblings would crack as I continue my journey. As of now that's it for this post. Now its time to teeter till morning. Hope I will have minimal sleep atleast (again minimal is relative!)

Minutes later, the bus propelled towards the destination and myself to dreamland.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The year 2014 in Uplifting trance

One more digression from mainstream blogging. This time, scratching few thoughts on my musical observations this year. Hope you enjoy!

The year 2014 has been great so far for orchestral uplifting trance fans with NewWorld, Time2Rest, Soundlift, Kelly Andrew and many more releasing melodious and inspiring tunes overall. The main highlight I believe is NewWorld's spectacular work of Ushio which amalgamates melodious piano, orchestral atmosphere with nature harmony. Also, not to miss the wonderful work Flying Higher by Soundlift again just incredible work. But my favorite tune lies in Nature Poesia by Time2Rest. OMG what a godly music :). Just perfect to depict the poem of nature filled with chirping birds, amazing leads, grand orchestral atmosphere. Can't miss this song even a single day. Bravo Time2Rest and kudos to the Ukranian masters :). The significant work of Kelly Andrew in his new melody Wonderland cannot be ruled out. One more added tune is Ahmed Romel remix of Leviticus originally crafted by Driftmoon and Andy Blueman. Unfortunately, even this year Blueman could not compile Away from Sun due to personal reasons. We could hope for release next year.

Why do I remember Andy Blueman? It is because of him orchestral uplifting trance evolved and others have just followed him :). He showed how the classical orchestral music can be united positively with trance to create everlasting uplifting melodies. Nowdays, Uplifting trance defaults to orchestral uplifting with many producers compose uplifting melodies atleast with minimal orchestral atmosphere. My innate inclination towards Indian Classical Music cannot fade away and I am expanding my horizon to classical orchestra by hearing to such melodies [ofcourse during my free time ;)]. The emotions musicians generate in uplifting trance genre with gamut of instruments can only be absorbed by hearing to them. The positive aspect of such genre is that composers appreciate each other openly and whole-heartedly when other does great job. There is barely any hatred in this category. This one fact I have noticed from my journey into this category of music from past 4 years. Ofcourse, people sneer at my offbeat inclination. They feel bewildered by my interest towards such occult music :). It is difficult to gain acceptance and consequently I have begun ignoring refuters.

The list from my side is here in increasing order of Rank. This list is from the collection of songs I heard this year and not the ultimate one. Since such musics are predominantly played in European radio shows, I definitely would have missed many more.

1) Time2Rest - Nature Poesia

This was originally composed 2 years back. With lot of tweaking, the song is eventually released on October 2014. This is such a heavenly music and my full respect to Ukrainian duo for the masterpiece. It comprises of excellent atmosphere with orchestral melody and nature elements. The music outsets with soothing violin followed by rhythmic bass. You can imagine driving in midst of dense forest (whichever you admire!). At 0:57, the poem of nature starts with the combination of violin and low pitch notes. Notice how the medley of high pitch violin with deep press of low pitch notes creates sublime environment :). A brief pause at 2:23 followed by chirping birds and breeze over mountains. At 2:32, the actual fun starts with light violin play, just imagine your stay in between dense forest with stream nearby, enjoying melody of birds and dribbling rains. The grand orchestral melody starts at 2:45 wherein you can take a deep breathe standing on top of valley enjoying the gentle flow of river with breeze caressing body and inhaling pristine air from the mountains.  At 3:00, enjoy the moving clouds hugging the mountains shadowing beaming Sun intermittently. At 3:47, the thick clouds with gentle wind prepare for downpour. At 3:54, its time to drench in rains and enjoy the thundering waterfalls amidst the spellbinding nature. One more beautiful aspect of this music is the rhythmic bassline & cymbals do not superseed the serene nature ambience :). Hope you enjoy the music too!

Few weeks back, I was off to Sigandhur Chowdeshwari Temple near Sagar. The return journey to Udupi was one of memorable one with blissful nature, ravishing western ghats, the lush green paddy fields and exuberant rivulets & lakes. The primary eye-catcher was the Varaahi river near mastikatte meandering gently through the valley of evergreen western ghats. The unexpected rains & gloomy weather added extra charm to the entire scene. At this time, I realized dedication of Time2Rest to craft such an outstanding  music. The soul was wandering at 0:57--1:20 when I stumbled upon such a tranquil nature. The emotions, ambiance of music were resembling that beautiful scenery of Malnad region.

2) NewWorld - Ushio
Have you ever noticed NewWorld producing imperfect music :). He is quintessential musician in orchestral uplifting trance nowadays alongside SoundLift & Andy Blueman. You can blindly appreciate his music even before you start and later sink in the ocean of orchestral melody :) [also find a way out to avoid drowning ;)]. The ingeniousness of young musician from US can only be felt by hearing to his music filled with stunning orchestras and melodic piano leads :). He never ceases to entertain fans with his magical musical talent! This music is one more example of his uber musical talent. The song is composed recently and has attracted numerous radio shows including future sound crown from FSOE-365. 'Ushio' welcomes with whooshing breeze and spellbinding crescendo of melodic piano with orchestral atmosphere followed by trance version. At 0:46, the emotional ensemble of strings is just mind-blowing. It is time to enjoy the blend of piano and violin at 3:36 leading to grand setup at 4:30. The breakdown starts at 4:56 with gamut of instrument conjoining, leading harmonious breakdown at 5:57 :). Just amazing piece of work with intelligent use of instruments :). Despite overwhelm of emotions, his "Outreach" still tops my list ;).

3) SoundLift - Flying higher

After resounding comeback tune "Freedom", the Portuguese musician codenamed "SoundLift" has once again delighted with marvelous music of "Flying Higher". You need to hear complete music to match with theme. Soundlift is brilliant in composing melodious tunes with soft bass. The orchestral melody comprising of drums, piano & violin from 1:26 to 1:53 with sound resembling flapping of bird wings is astounding. My favorite part is the beautiful lead progression from 1:53 to 2:50. He has one more Duduk version wherein he played the instrument on his own combining it with the actual version.  

Original Version

Duduk Version

4) Blue Silence & Mat Chowski - Nothing to Fear (NewWorld epic intro mix)

One more masterpiece by Gordon. The young musician provided master touch to the original version with his exquisite talent. Starts with consoling leads and later with sensational violin & piano medley with use of wind chimes. The melody from 1:45 to 3:46 with piano, violin and leads just gets rid of your fear with consoling chords. The breakdown dawns at 3:48 with sensational mix of low & high pitch notes resulting in spectacular breakdown at 4:40 with high tempo leads.

5) Kelly Andrew - Wonderland

Starts with heavenly orchestral melody and later transitions to trance version. The actual melody starts at 3:34 with angelic vocal chords, melodious violin and piano leads which takes you to you to a wonderland of exotic destination. The breakdown starts at 4:42 with high tempo leads where you can enjoy being in wonderland and later culminates at 5:42 :).
6) Driftmoon & Andy Blueman - Leviticus (Ahmed Romel remix)
Starts with slightly intense bass and later beautiful violin play joins the rhythm. The middle part (2:18 -  simply marvelous with fiddle of violin & clarinet creating stupendous melody. The breakdown starts at 3:17 with gradual increase in pace and later culminates at 4:11 with heavenly piano leads. This has been favorite of many trance fans since Ahmed Romel released the music.

7) Blue5even - Beauty (Dave Moz & Fredd Moz Pres. Strings Melodies Remix)

Just few days back, I heard this wonder. As theme states, its absolute beauty especially the orchestra from 1:33 to 2:54. The captivating orchestra starts at 1:33 with French horn and later blends with violin. Watch out for that grand orchestra at 2:27 B-). The breakdown starts with melodious piano leads at 2:54 and later reaching finale at 3:49 with marching bassline :). What a beauty to end the beautiful year!


8) Sky Flight _ Allen Ma - Journal De Voyage (Original Mix)

One more beautiful track to the list as the year comes to end. Filled with emotional piano, melodic violin & flute and blissful atmosphere, this song really deserves to be in top of the list. It has great melody throughout the song duration. Listen and document the journal of journey towards the fascinating melody!


9)  Mhammed El Alami & illitheas & Johannes Fischer - Breath Of Life (Original Mix)
The trio from Morocco & Germany pulled up a uplifting wonder called "Breath of Life". Everytime I listen to this it drives me crazy and feels like resting on top of mountains during monsoon season with heavy cloud movement along the heaven. OMG! what a lovely feeling such a euphoric breakdown. My full respect to the trio for their masterpiece! Half of my writing arise out of such impeccable melodies filled with infinite emotions. The blissful chords give rise to repertoire of metaphors in neural system which drives the arms towards the keyboard resulting in short writes!

From 2:25 to 3:13 enjoy your stay in beautiful western ghats with blissful melody of chirping birds, violin and bubbling wind chimes
From 3:16 to 4:13 enjoy the breath from the pure mountains with beautiful melody of horn, violin, wind chimes, piano leads and rhythmic orchestral drums.

Synchronous to the drums, behold the synergistic flight of birds flying freely towards their niche along the distant horizon with perfect geometric pattern over a beautiful serene river ornate with gentle orange sky lit by the golden hour Sun.

The lead progression outsets at 4:15 with lovely atmosphere along with periodic piano melody leading to a breathtaking breakdown at 5:10

At 5:11, watch out for the heavy monsoon clouds approaching the hillocks rehearsing for downpour and transforming the smouldered surface to greener canvas
At 5:38 enjoy the dancing sea tides slithering towards the shoreline
At 6:06 enjoy enthusiastic torrent of water marching their way towards the mighty plunge culminating in a thundering waterfall creating magnificent spectacle.
At 6:34 enjoy the sprinkling rain over the beautiful mountains

Breath the wonder and rejuvenate your life!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Short timelapses from Belur and Halebeedu.

Architectures provide wonderful platform for composing HDRs. There are lots of perception to compose. Long time back, I had traveled to Belur and Halebeedu to revisit the Hoysala empire glory after 20 long years. My primary intention was for photography and rest includes deviation from city life, relaxation etc.. Even though it was winter season, the weather was unusually hot and humid. Consequently, the atmosphere was hazy too. To add to that, I did not carry my CPL filter (not sure why!). However there were clouds hovering around the skies which tempted me to grab few short timelapses. After fulfilling my thirst of photography wandering all around premise of Belur, I chose a platform to sit down and relax for sometime. Alongside my rest, I started intervalometer to capture a timelapse with the scaffolded pinnacle and huge premise as steady subjects. The movements were achieved by clouds and people. I believe, the clicks happened for few hours comprising of 250 pictures shot at an interval of 10secs. Eventually it turned out nice and the first part of video is timelapse from Belur. The psuedo movement is achieved by cropping the pictures using Motion Timelapser software

The second part is from Halebeedu. This timelapse was also consequence of aforementioned reason. The crux was to give myself a break :). I sat on a bench near Nandi statue and captured the timelapse. I did not carry tripod and hence could not obtain proper elevation. As a result, the frames are out of focus :(. Despite the loss of focus, the movements of clouds are appealing :). Overall did not turn up as better as Belur. I could have managed for some more timelapses if I had my own arrangements for transport. The gloomy weather coupled with time constraints tempted me to pack-up as early as possible. There are numerous HDRs composed during my visit which I will share in subsequent write-ups. As of now enjoy short timelapses from Belur and Halebeedu. Any suggestions are always welcome.

Music: New World - Let me Go, beautiful medley of strings and piano. Love the atmosphere in middle of tune and used it to fit my timelapse. If you are interested, hear full tune here:

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Heaven on Earth

From Santosh Hotel we trekked downwards through deep dense rain forests, piercing through canopy, wading through streams, sliding along valley, slipping on leaves, crossing fallen woods, jumping across boulders, bending along entangled bushes and reached ultimatum. Excitement galore as we reached culmination. That was pure "Heaven on Earth" in middle of dense rain forests of Kollur. The water was pristine, the weather was calm, the plunge was energetic and devoid of any human activity. Fortunately we did not encounter any snakes this time! It was tranquilizer to watch the waterfall thundering down to the deep pool with high energy. The attraction was none other than the beautiful 120 feet Arishinagundi Waterfalls. What a magnificent splendor to watch in middle of deep dense western ghats. Every sweat drop is worth to reach this place. The only sound we could hear was from waterfall and chirping birds. Western ghats are home to many such splendid treasures. Due to absence of civilization, there was not single waste nearby waterfall. We made it this time with help of wonderful guides. We had to climb down for 5kms through thick forests with profuse sweating. It was "Heaven on Earth" as we reached this magnificent sight. Our strain was eradicated after bathing in ice cold water.

Do hear grand orchestral music from Soundlift "Heaven on Earth" on this occassion and feel the passion of western ghats.

SoundLift - Heaven on Earth:

Linked to Skywatch Friday

Saturday, November 8, 2014

A sojourn at Devarakolli waterfalls

02 Oct 2014,

Diverging paths from Bangalore were having tough times, thanks to the prolonged weekend. The holidays were keeping the city outskirts busy rather than the city itself. There was gigantic pile of motors lined up all along the highway leading to Mysore. The pathetic Shiraadi ghat road tempted us to drive along the longest Sampaje ghat road via Madikeri to Udupi. We dawned our day embracing normal traffic and later enjoying heavenly NICE road. 45mins later we were in Kengeri. The excitement peaked since we had crossed city at brisk pace but the zeal did not last long. The actual traffic snarls began showing up in few kms of drive. Our plan boomeranged with gazillion motors lined up all along the humps and town limits. The lousy traffic stagnated the smooth journey for more than 20mins as we entered town limits of Channapattana, Ramanagara, Mandya, Madhur. It was tough drive with the wheels barely scraping the asphalted surface, hands swaying around 1-2 gear, hardly any peddle on throttle, motor toiling along statically swollen & crumbled humps, radiating mid-day sun and melancholy of crazy honkers. The optimistic drive past Mandya was impeded by frequent pessimistic speed breakers. The cumulative delay was 3hrs. The journey which started at 7:30AM lasted for 5 hours and eventually reached Srirangapattana at 12:30PM. We were devastated by the abysmal traffic with full house restaurants adding fury to the situation and stomach.

A sigh of relief after Srirangapattana but still not hopeful of smooth journey due to traffic flow towards Madikeri. However, things were alright except for frequent humps till Bailukuppe. Phew man! That was tedious drive for no reason. The difficult drive was later overridden by the lush green hillocks. Yes, they are our lovely Western Ghats. Driving past Suntikoppa was heaven, piercing the dense canopy of rainforest (with Andy Blueman's rainforest music), floating the motor along hairpin bends. Moreover, the lack of humps, feeble traffic, well paved roads provided festive touch for eyes and drive. 2PM, we were in Madikeri and there is no need to explain the Joy. We were having roller-coaster drive descending the Sampaje Ghat with flat bitumen surface. As we descended 15kms, we stopped nearby glistening waterfall called Devarakolli waterfall. It was not surprise since we knew it from long time. The only new entry was its name which I came to know from shopkeepers nearby. As you know, Madikeri is famous for Abbey & Iruppu waterfalls. However, there are many other unknown waterfalls nearby namely, Devaragundi and Kalyala waterfalls (requires 1km trek). Devarakolli waterfall is not so prominent mainly due to fact tourists hardly descend down Sampaje ghat from Madikeri. In fact there is not much space for taking bath but nice hangout for few hours. The waterfall was at considerable glory since monsoon had just receded. It would be heavenly to watch during peak monsoon season though. At the end, if you are planning for Madikeri, just descend down Sampaje ghat to view beautiful shining waterfall. Don't worry, roads are fabulous and there is space for motor parking.

Here are pictures and a short video of visit. Hope you enjoy!

About the waterfall:

To give some heads-up, this is not official description rather my own narration. There was no info-board nearby and whatever mentioned here is based on my observations. Situated along Mani-Madikeri state highway right in middle of western ghats, the waterfall derives its name from the village Devarakolli. The waterfall seemed to have height of about 120feet. It has two stage zig-zag plunge followed by a short cascade. When I say zig-zag, the first stage and second stage are not visible at one sight but need to look them at different angles. Few shops situated nearby provides snacks and tea. The waterfall is easily accessible along the highway and parking place is available for vehicles.

From this place, we enjoyed smooth journey till Udupi (except for few stretches from Sampaje to Sulya). It was whopping 12 hr journey battered by the hectic traffic along Mysore highway. However, from Srirangapattana, we barely took 7:30hrs to reach Udupi despite 45 minutes of break. After the initial heck, the waterfall and western ghats added extra psychological smoothness to drive. The warmth the lovely rainforests deliver along with the beautiful waterfalls nestled in them can only be experienced and cannot be penned (rather keyed) down. End of day, we reached the culmination safely.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Sunset in your Eyes

Just returning from visit to Ramadevara betta last week during deepavali festival. The Sun had lit the sky with deepavali lamp. The sky after rains, is lit colorfully by the sinking sun with golden light. I feel, this phenomenon has some scientific fact behind it. The Sunset coupled with stray clouds paint the sky with dramatic patterns during golden hour, few minutes after rains. The patterns are vivid if the rays of Sun pierce through the shattered clouds! This time, even in Ramanagara, the scene was similar. There was significant rain for 10mins and later on the sunset with clouds created colorful medley in the sky. The rocky hills and green fields added more charm to the entire scene. The lone upright slender tree added to the rule of thirds placement to the composition :). Overall a perfect scene to capture HDR images. I had GND even this time which again restricted exposure bracketing to 5. The final HDR was composed sparing the +2EV picture for all of them since +1EV had enough shadow details. The images were blend in Luminance HDR and final editing with Darktable. Not to forget the "auto-align" option in Luminance HDR which is very important when you compose HDR hand-held. Lot of tweakings were carried out in darktable to match the "Sunset seen in my eyes" :).

The title is used to depict the "Sunset seen in my eyes" that day hoping for colorful days with vivid outlook. I hope you enjoy the pictorical Sunset in your eyes too!

This time the musical credit goes to the beautiful work by Poland musician TrancEye - Sunset In Your Eyes. Just lovely piece of music with orchestral melody and spectacular piano. Here are special aspects of music.

--> 2:20 orchestral melody followed by medley of piano at 2:45
--> the silent piano melody 3:23
--> beautiful breakdown outset at 3:51

The orchestral atmosphere from 2:21 to 3:15 is just mind blowing with gradual tempo build-up around 3:35 which sets up perfect breakdown pattern at 4:18 :)

TranceEye - Sunset in your eyes:

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Panchamukhi Anjaneya cave temple, Raichur District

"Jai Hanuman Gyan Gun Saagar" outsets Hanuman Chaalisa.

During our visit to Mantralaya, we do not miss a chance to visit Panchamukhi Anjaneya temple situated in Karnataka-Andhra border. The place is said to have mythological importance and lord Anjaneya believed to be wish granter. The usual way is to travel via Auto-rickshaw along newly built dam across Tungabhadra river. This auto is a mass transit system and charge Rs.30/head (to & fro, a year back). The distance is around 25kms from Mantralaya. If there is sufficient water in Tungabhadra river, the best way to reach is to cross the river with coracle and later board Tata Sumo (again mass transit and tightly packed). The coracle ride is bit expensive but joyous. All along the journey, don't miss to enjoy the lush green meadows filled with fertile paddy fields. Also the landscape of river canal is soul soothing. Beware of chili plantations in between. You may sneeze persistently if you do not mask the nose. Also the blockages created by bulls and cows is one more enjoyment factor. Sometimes the driver inevitably has to dispel the adamant cattle.


The temple maintenance is quite average but has serene surroundings. Do not miss to savor the coconut burfee here! Also beware of nasty monkeys. They exhibit their power to the fullest. You may need to rush back since the transport owners force you to return ASAP! Better to have own transport system if you wish to spend more time here. At last, dont miss to enjoy puffed rice with little bit spice!


Sri Raghavendra Swamiji carried out penance for 12yrs in the cave around 16th century. Admired by the intense devotion, Panchamukhi Anjaneya, kolhapura mahalakshmi, Tirupati Venkateshwara and Sri vishnu in Varahaavataara appeared in front of him. As per guidelines, it is believed that Swamiji resided in Mantralaya. The main priest Anantachar believed to have installed idols of Rudra, Ganapathy and SheshaDevaru. The original fable falls back to Ramayana era which I am not aware of.

What to look out for:

  1. Gudi of Hanuman's footprint in front of temple
  2. Naturally formed aerial vehicle behind the temple
  3. Nearby the aerial vehicle, one can spot naturally formed bed and pillow which Hanuman used during mythological days
  4. Towards north, temple of village goddess Erakalamma
Temple timings:

Fore noon - 6AM to 1PM
After noon - 3PM to 8PM

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Shri Chamundeshwari Palayam

Welcome to the energetic days of Navaratri. Goddess Durga is considered as symbol of energy and destroyer of evil. Just as when I was hearing beautiful composition of Sri Mysore Vasudevacharya, "Sri Chamundeshwari Palayam" in Bilahari Raaga, a thought sparkled into my mind to collate some of the Durga temples I have visited over the years. I guess many of you have visited the places but still sharing mine too. Hope you enjoy the virtual tour of the temples. Most of them are from nearby my hometown and few belong to Malnad areas. Ganesha and Durga are the prominently worshiped in coastal karnataka and hence one can find many of them. All of them have mythological importance. This post is dedicated to Goddess Durga and I pray the mother to bless people on earth with prosperity

Kamalashile Durgaparameshwari Temple

Situated beneath the beautiful evergreen western ghats, this temple draws crowd all through the year and heavily crowded during Navaratri days. During torrential monsoon season, the river Kubja swells towards the idol of deity soaking her with pristine water from western ghats. This day is considered auspicious and locals throng the temple to garner blessings during this occasion wading through swollen river. Do not miss to savor tasty lunch in the temple :). One can hire guide to visit Suparshwa cave in midst of dense western ghats where King Suparshwa believed to have carried out penance.

More info:

Kollur Mookambika Temple

The highest visited temple only next to Kukke Subramanya. One more temple situated right beneath the western ghats. This place is heavily crowded and it is strenuous to visit during Navaratri days. Devotees throng here prominently for Aksharabhyasa. Beautiful Souparnika river flows nearby temple and if you have energy, trek to Arishinagundi waterfalls 6kms from here through dense jungles!

Kateelu Durgaparameshwari

Situated 30kms from Mulki, this temple too attracts heavy crowd throughout the year. Similar to Kollur, it is strenuous to visit during Navaratri days. The temple lies exactly in mid of Nandini river. The sight is beautiful to watch during monsoon season surrounded by roaring river. Yakshagana offering is prominent in this temple where "Devi Mahatme" Yakshagana is performed as offering to Goddess Durga. There is long streak of queue for the offering. If you book now, it may take 2yrs from now for your turn. This is also due to the fact the offering is stalled for 6 months every year.

Sri Chamundeshwari Temple, Mysore

This well known for most of Indians and does not require any introduction. Here is a picture for you.

Kunjoor Durgaparameshwari temple near my village :)

Not prominent one however is surrounded by beautiful nature and paddy fields

These are few temples nearby Udupi. Not as well knows as above ones but worth mentioning due to mythological importance

MahishaMardhini Temple, Kadiyali

Durgaparameshwari Temple, Puttur

Durgaparameshwari Temple, Kunjar

This temple is located atop a small hillock. It is a fantastic vantage point even, where one can enjoy landscape 360degrees. This temple is recently renovated. One can also climb the steps to reach the temple (about 1000). The priest of temple draws water from well beneath the temple and brings it all the way upwards via steps for daily poojas!

Durgaparameshwari Temple, Mundkoor

Horanaadu Annaporneshwari Temple

Situated in middle of beautiful Western ghats, the temple also attracts huge crowd throughout year. Read a short post here.

Shringeri Shaarada Temple

This temple is also situated in middle of beautiful western ghats along with majestic sweet Tunga river flowing beside it. Read my past posts here


Bappanadu Durgaparameshwari Temple, Muki

The temple lies between beautiful paddy fields of Mulki also draws huge crowd during Navaratri days. The shambhavi river nearby adds more glory to temple's beauty. I do not have much information on this temple. Will gather when I find time.
There are many more which I will cover whenever I spare some time to visit. Hope you enjoyed the short post.

Also today I am happy to announce 50k views on my blog. I am indebted to the readers on achieving this milestone and will continue to write blogs whenever I find time. Never dreamt of blog reaching to such height. Once again I thank all the readers and also google for increasing page rank of my blog posts (98% traffic is from google search :) )

On this day, I share few beautiful musics based on Goddess Durga. There are many beautiful songs on Goddess however my favorite lies in three compositions of Sri Muthuswamy Deekshitar in Ananda-Bhairavi, Bhairavi and Dwijavanti

1) Kamalamba Samrakshatu (sung by students of Wesleyan University):

2) Aaryam Abhayambham (Composed exclusively in Dvitiya Vibhakti. Read its review here):

3) Akhilandeshwari Rakshamam (Hear from beautiful voice of Maharajapuram Santanam):

4) Do hear Sri Chamundeshwari Palayam in Bilahari:

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Timelapse - Distant storm formation at Markonahalli Dam

Here is one more old timelapse which I love very much. The nimbus clouds forming distant storm is mesmerizing sight to watch. Due to such patterns of nature, I love monsoon season whole heartedly. So how did I capture this? You need some experience of watching the sky especially during monsoon season. The whitish nimbus clouds illuminated by Sunlight turn dark as they shadow the sunlight. Such scenes are normal in coastal Karnataka and occur frequently during monsoon season. My curiosity towards monsoon makes me to watch at sky most of the times during monsoon season. Consequently this was one such scene which I could capture it as timelapse. The final video is edited in KDENLIVE for various parameters which I dont remember now. I aspire to capture more such timelapses during monsoon season. Hope you enjoy the timelapse.

The movements are achieved by usual cropping techniques. A little bit of boring math for cropping. The initial plane of frame was as shown in dotted line and final frame I wanted to achieve is shown as solid rectangle. Note that I wanted to maintain the the aspect ratio intact (which was 3:2). If not, the final frames would be clipped and video looks erroneous! The resolution 550D has is 5184x3456 pixels which is aspect ratio of 3:2. The motion time lapser counts (0,0) axis from top left and hence some offset corrections needs to be done to achieve movement. Consequently I fixed (x,y) co-ordinates to (0,1000) and later move the plane towards (1500, 0). To achieve this and fit the images to frame the offset correction goes as below

Frame length: (5184-1500),(3456-1000) = (3684,2456)
Movements from (0,1000) to (1500,0) with frame length of (3684, 2456).

Despite of this calculation, I had some clippings in last few images. May be algorithm used by Motion Time Lapser is different and hence I restricted final 'y' co-ordinates to (1500,200). The final math goes as

Initial (x,y)=(0,1000)
Final (x,y)=(1500,200)
Frame length=(3684,2456)

The final figure is as below. So what's the rule? There is no rule as such! It is upto your discretion to decide the co-ordinates to align with desired movements and speediness. Draw your desired movements on sheet of paper, execute simple math and set the co-ordinates in motion timelapser software which can be downloaded from here

Friday, September 26, 2014

Timelapse collection from my village and kaup beach

Here is brief video of timelapses composed in my village and Kaup beach over period of 8months. It has been lying in hard drive for no reason and I thought of compiling in bulk. Consequently here are set of footages of timelapse uploaded in batches to youtube. Except the night timelapse all of them are impromptu ones. Bangalore environment never provided me motivation to capture timelapses (not sure why) however as I reach my village, camera becomes very much active. I need to find a way to launch myself in city environment. Last but not least, comments and critiques are always welcome. If you are enthusiastic about timelapse or photography, please drop a comment so that I can contact you offline to create some footages alongside for fun.

The first one is set of compiled star trails composed during winter season. The first clip has turned out be great :). The technique I learned was the soft moon light (say 4th day from new moon) provides perfect studio light for exposing stars :D. Especially the opposite horizon gets exposed well under moon light! However after 5th day, the moon light is of no use and star visibility becomes pale. In that situation, if there are plenty of moving clouds, it creates one more dramatic timelapse with slight star exposure. Overall it turned out well. The huge compilation brings a sense of joy and keeps viewers also engaged and curious :).

Music: Innersync remix of Andy blueman's unifinished music Away From Sun. What can I say about this music, its perfect for extra terrestrial footages :D. Innersync has immense talent creating such music. Even though Andy did not finish this music, innersync foresaw its prologue and movements well and infused his talent to complete the music. Blueman was irked by the remix since he requested people not to remix unless he finishes. Nags apart, watch the video with beautiful remix from Innersync. Good news is Blueman has promised to finish the track

Full tunes:

1) Andy Blueman - Away from Sun (Preview):
2) Andy Blueman - Away from Sun (Innersync remix):

The next one is dancing fog with peacock. I left the camera in the plantation and luckily peacock arrived at the time when nobody was around. Also the dancing fog has come good too :). At the end, the moving shadows also created beautiful effect :D. One critique I received from Rajesh was that capture should have been longer in length. Even I felt it later. Nevertheless, the final video turned out good with peacock and dancing fog.

Music: Royalty free music from YouTube repository

I have not grabbed much timelapses from Kaup beach. Usually I visit to enjoy the nature more than photography. Consequently only two short timelapses till date! The first was snapped during the day when stratocumulous clouds painted dramatic patterns on the sky during blue hour (Read related blog here). The other one was captured during monsoon season. Overall good to be in collection but nothing like terrific capture. Hope you enjoy the same.

Music: Royalty free music from YouTube repository

Here is near 3 minute footage of pending timelapses from my village. I was forced to dispose them due to lack of disk space. This time some video editing has been applied to accentuate the presence of moving clouds and sunrise with shadows. Every timelapse has different intervals, frames/second and shot in different modes (majority 'M' mode while few of them in 'Av' mode). Even though the clip is around 3 minutes, the rendering swallowed almost 90 minutes of time :(. This is mainly due to hardware glitch. It was worth the wait since the final video turned out to be quite fantastic ;). Hope you enjoy the same. The last part of timelapse was shot at night even though it appears as day! Shooting against studio light of moon creates such an effect at night except that stars are not exposed clearly.

Music: Our one and only Andy Blueman's orchestral mix of Afternova's work of 'Serenity'. One of the top class work of Andy Blueman since his inception into trance world. I used this music to depict serene village environment and it perfectly aligned with my video. This has been my all time favorite music and I listen to it every morning to calm myself down. Never makes you feel as how 9 minutes passed off. Gives a sense of peace and tranquility and with slow moving clouds over Kudremukh ghats. Those flute and violin blend is simply mesmerizing for ears. The actual fun starts at 3:30 when violin starts ascending towards high pitch, reaching peak at 3:40 and conjoins various instruments at 3:58 creating a serene ambiance B-). This pattern repeats further ahead but with different variations. Andy's brilliance in orchestral music is unquestionable and this music is no different! He was the first musician to introduce orchestral music in uplifting trance and since then has created many followers for him! The melody he generates is impeccable and gets you moving :). Most of the European musicians are fond of orchestral melodies and design it very well. I hope my video pays due honest to his musical excellence. There is also plan to capture more timelapses to fit entire music!

Full tunes:

1) Afternova - Serenity (Andy Blueman orchestral mix):
2) Afternova - Serenity (Andy Blueman remix):

After gamut of inconsequential information, hope you enjoy the video too :)

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Bhoota Kola of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi Districts - A short video

Bhoota Kola (precisely bhootada kola) is prominent belief amongst people of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi district. A raw translation to English leads to Spirit worship or daemon worship. People in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi district are firm worshipers of Goddess durga and Lord Ganapathy. Apart from this, they worship the spirits and have small fane dedicated to it. The event happens amongst family groups and not as public worship. There is also Serpent worship (Cobra) which occurs as public event. Our family group conducts this event every year during winter time. Pre-dominantly the event is conducted during nights of winter season. The worship prolongs for entire night. The protagonist for the event is well experienced in performing the worship as acts as representative of the daemon. It is believed the daemon enters his soul after performing certain chronology and later on he acts as messenger of daemon. The event starts around 10PM and ends at 4AM. There are reasons as why the event tends to be under night sky (may be spirits appear only at night?). The event starts of with tiny "pooje" and later the performer adorns himself with artistic patterns resembling the imaginary spirit. The event is initiated with "Gaggara", the later moment it is believed spirit enters the soul. Thereafter, the acts performed are not well defined and carried out as per wish of spirit. A short break at the middle narrates the story of the spirit worship during which, the soul is back to human nature. Later on, the spirit is pleased again to enter the soul. As concluding part, people seek queries on their problems and spirit provides solutions to them. Any deficiencies in family group, the spirit seeks remedy for the same. The day ends with distribution of prasada and its time for us to have deep slumber.

Here starts my story. This was the first time, I burnt my eyes whole night videographing this special event for first time. I guess once during childhood days, I watched event for entire night. As life and civilization modernizes, such type of events are being perceived as superstitions and people only watch them as a folklore. It is up-to to people to decide their beliefs. My job here was to concentrate on the videography concepts without hindering the sanctity of occasion or hampering people's belief. I was on duty based on request from one of the visitor for free :). It was also sort of learning opportunity for me despite curtailing peaceful sleep. I did few video editing too! All videos were shot hand-held which was sufficient to maintain steadiness. Eventually around 10GB of footage was accumulated and later compiled in KDENLIVE for final touch up. Only prominent aspects of event was retained in compiled video and turned out to be quite huge too (around 25 mins). I shared the compiled DVD with my cousin brother in village and he was enthralled to watch it with high quality. Even I was satisfied with the kind of reception the video drew (my father was happy too!). Hope you find time to watch lengthy video. I compiled video after a gap of 4 months from the day of event. Somethings require time and they deserve too (Like Subramanya train journey which I uploaded after gap of 4 months).

 I self reviewed the video and found few observations

  • Missed some important events like the performer being decorated as spirit especially painting. I was away during his preparation.
  • The middle of event is called "Paad-dhaana" in Tulu during which, the fable of spirit worship is narrated. The audio turned out to be feeble since I lacked external microphone
  • The last part of event when prasada was distributed. I was quite exhausted during wee hours desperately wanting to lie on bed.
  • Usage of tripod was not possible since the performer skews around area due to which lot of dynamism was required while videographing.
  • The reasons may seem to be excuses however will try next year for better glimpses.

Last Note:

"What kind of worship is this which finds place in modernized world full of robots", someone may lament. As mentioned earlier, my part here was to enjoy the event and videograph to my known knowledge. I have not uploaded for debating. Any comments/critiques on perception, quality of the video are highly appreciated. While on contrary, any praise/flames on the authenticity of worship will be mercilessly scrapped :). I do not expect any critiques here other than videography

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Memoirs of Melukote

This is one of my old write-ups being published now. Almost 4 years since I visited beautiful Melukote. Just sharing those few moments of tranquility in serene environment. I documented very less during the journey and content is relatively less. I admire this place for those eye-catching landscapes and lakes. Apart from this I do enjoy savoring those tasty puliyogare (tamarind rice), mirchi bajji and curd rice with mango pickle :D which is quite popular and unique here. I have been twice here, once alone and another time with my parents. I have also plans to visit this place in future too ;).

01 Nov 2009

I frequently travel to Mysore to my elder sister's house and have fun time with my nephew. He was just a 2-3 years old those days and playing with infants is very much exhilarating. Their cute smiles, wicked acts, naughty deeds and more prominently their enthusiasm and energy have great lessons embedded in them [He used to pull my hair and spectacles too ;-)]. After spending few days in Mysore, during my return journey, I used to get lured by the signboards towards Melukote nearby Mandya. Did hear about the place very long time and was also impressed seeing wikipedia entry. On a fine day, I inquired in KSRTC bus station regarding the bus availability from Bangalore. As usual the staff were irish and I did not get proper response from them. One of the staff angrily asked me to inquire in Mandya Bus Stand. I was bit annoyed but can't help. Nowadays things have far improved though.

It was on 01 Nov 2009, I started my journey towards Melukote. Unaware of route to destination, my first target was Mandya and later seek help in bus stand. I caught up with early morning train to Mysore and in matter of 90 minutes I was in Mandya. Later I walked towards bus stand which is few hundred meters from Railway Station. As I reached the bus stop, a bus destined to Melukote was about to start. When inquired, the conductor informed it will be 15 mins more to start. Also the bus was empty and I had tasty breakfast in bus stand hotel itself. Later the bus started moving towards Melukote slowly. Since it was local bus, the movement was at snail's pace. It was fabulous journey though. The lush green meadows, the coconut plantations, the fragrance of Jaggery houses, the flowing canals, the magnificent hillocks and lakes and paddy/sugarcane fields made sure that I never get bored. Also the roads were very well paved. As we neared Melukote, the hills of Yoganarasimha temple caught my eyes. The last few kms were of semi ghat type with hair pin bends. At last 9:45PM, I was in Melukote and it was time to explore.

Apparently Melukote is a hamlet with antique look. It is surrounded by beautiful nature especially numerous water bodies. As I was not aware of this place much, my primary intention was to visit the prominent temples for which the place is known for. The beneath temple deity is Cheluvanarayana swamy while the hillock one is Yoganarasimha swamy. The annual car festival attracts thousands of pilgrims to this place. One has to walk for few distance to reach Cheluvanarayana swamy temple if you are arriving by bus. The private vehicles can drive till temple premises. The first impression of temple was it is ancient temple made entirely of stone. The temples were constructed during Hoysala Empire in respect of Sri Ramanujacharya who is propagator of Vishishtadwaita. Few renovation work was under progress. There were lot of debris inside the temple cluttered all along. The interior was filled with darkness with only few lights. Apparently felt filthy inside. The sanctum sanitarium was closed when I went inside. Few minutes later it opened for public visit. There was small pale bulb which lights up the sanctum sanitarium which people felt like its almost dusk. Nevertheless the deity's idol was beautiful to watch. Since the photography was prohibited inside, I could only enjoy from my eyes. After having darshan of lord, I roamed around the temple premises for a while. The array of pillars were looking magnificent too! There is also free lunch home where devotees are fed with free meals every afternoon. After being satisfied with stroll, I departed towards the Yoganarasimha hill.

I really had to rush to temple since it would be closed for public visit by 12PM. I checked time and it was already 11AM. It is required to climb 300 steps bare foot to reach the temple. There is shoe stand just before stepping up where we need to leave our footwears. One can also take vehicles till mid of hill from where the steps are only around hundred. I had no option other than climbing entire stretch. The pestering of beggars for money all along the steps is an irritating sight altogether. If you lend one, others will throng you begging! Most of the travelers do not owe even single penny to beggars to avoid their embarrassment. These beggars used to curse people who did not lend them money but that was manageable :). The next problem creators were as usual monkeys. There are gazillion of them. Their courage is kind of intimidating for us. Fortunately I did not have any food item and hence nowhere near me. However, I could see them aggressively snatching the eatables from pilgrims.







There were good things to enjoy here too ;-). The landscape from mid of ascension was breath taking. The hillocks and lakes were ravishing to watch. I took many pictures to satisfy my photography thirst. Those were the days, I knew very little about photography relatively. No HDR, timelapse and very few manual mode experiments. Also I had basic manual mode camera and no DSLR. After toiling for nearly 45mins, I reached the temple. There was huge rush for the darshan and had to wait for some time to enter the sanctum sanatorium. I found more people here than in the temple beneath. The idol is marvelous describing the divine anger of Narasimha with sharp nails and teeth. After finishing my darshan, I enjoyed some beautiful landscapes surrounding the temple. Landscapes are well captured at an altitude and consequently some more pictures snapped here. Sometimes I felt precarious due to gravity pull :D.




I stepped down the hill and had local dishes in one of mobile hotel. Puliyogare and curd rice are simply the best here :-). It was nominal Rs.10/- per leaf cup. You can even buy puliyogare paste or powder if you wish but the paste doesn't last long. After lunch it was time to relish the locally grown tender coconut. Once done, I moved towards Bangalore. Caught a bus to Mandya and from there to Bangalore and thus ending one of my enchanting journeys.


Few years later, I visited this place with my parents and spotted few more attractions nearby. I did miss them during my last itinerary. Prominently Akka-Tangi Kola and Rayagopura. That time I had the best mirchi bajji in my lifetime and still the best till date :). Never miss to savor the tasty Puliyogare, curd rice and mirchi bajji with pickle if you are visiting (No photographs though). Overall a great place to visit for a day and refresh in natural air along with serene environment. I suggest to visit during Jan-Feb timeframe.

More info can be found in Wikipedia:

Here are two panoramic pictures composed during my second visit



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