The Black Beats were one of the band’s from Shillong, India that took part in the Simla Beat contest in 1971. All-India Simla Beat Contest was organised in the late-1960s by the India Tobacco Company and groups from all around India would compete for first prize.
In an attempt to reach the youth market, the India Tobacco company billed itself as “the oldest cigarette company with a young heart” and tried to attach its brand name to rock music. The contest was first held in Bombay in 1968 and became an annual event thereafter. As the contest grew, a subsidiary of EMI released the LP Simla Beat 70, which collected the winning tracks from the 1970 contest, and followed the next year with Simla Beat 71.
The Mod Trade is a cool instrumental track, brimming with some real juicy beats and rather hypnotically curvy-psych guitar melodies. I love the way the song gathers momentum towards the end and really appreciate how the instruments are laid down in this recording; it sounds like you are actually in the room as this is being played live! The drums are raw and the sonic journey, mysterious and unchartered!…Check it out above.
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