Four instrumentalists with roots in diverse musical genres, including Indian, Western & Jazz. Brought together by a shared desire to create new approaches to music-making & to explore the full potential of their instruments, Indus skilfully navigate through uncharted & ever-changing musical terrain.


Relative newcomers to Britain's world music scene, Indus brings together four of the country's leading instrumentalists from Indian, Western & Jazz genres. Indus was formed in late 2008 out of a shared desire to create new approaches to music-making and to expand the boundaries of each member's genres & instruments. Inspired by the rich musical tapestry of India & Pakistan, the group's original music skilfully navigates uncharted & ever-changing musical terrain. Indus is John Ball (Santoor), Mohamed Assani (Sitar), Henrik Linnemann ( Flute) & Shahbaz Hussain (Tabla).

Following an intensive & creative period of defining their sound, Indus embarked on their inaugural national tour of England in June 2009, with the support of the Arts Council England (please see EPK Calendar for details of tour dates & venues). The group's performances have attracted vastly diverse audiences of all ages and cultures and the response to their music has been phenomenal, with comments received like:

"I felt amazed - like a child!"

"Absolutely beautiful. I feel reconnected and refreshed!"

"Am not normally able to listen to 'sit-down' music, but this was riveting!"

"Thank you for an inspiring evening - even kept our cynical 9-year old enthralled!"

In October 2009, Indus released their debut album, Firefly, recorded live in studio. According to independent music reviewers RadioIndy, "The 4-piece band stretches the boundaries of their Hindustani-inspired music in a musical exploration that’s both rich in tradition as well as brilliantly modern....Equally challenging and rewarding, the evocative 'Firefly' CD by Indus is perfect for fans of Indian music, or for listeners of similarly modern World Music visionaries like John McLaughlin’s Shakti or Anouar Brahem." The album is on sale worldwide through CD Baby.

Indus continue to compose & develop their unique sound. They are keen to share their music as widely as possible. Their tour of the UK continues until October 2010 after which they plan to record their second album and tour globally. The group is committed to building their audience base and extending their network of partnerships with promoters, festivals, artistic directors & programmers, record labels, media reps, sponsors, funders and other potential collaborators.

Indus is currently managed by Shahaa Kakar, former CEO of Leeds-based music organisation South Asian Arts - uk.


Shahbaz Hussain (Tabla / Voice)
Shahbaz is fast emerging as one of the most promising tabla virtuosos of his generation. He has received numerous accolades for his captivating performances, including recently receiving the prestigious “Son of Lahore” Award from the Pakistan Arts Council for his services to the arts of tabla. He is much sought after for his accompaniment skills by many of the great masters musicians of India & Pakistan. Shahbaz has been groomed by some of the great tabla maestros of this century, including Ustad Faiyaz Khan, the late Ustad Shaukat Hussain Khan and the late Ustad Allah Rakha Khan.

Henrik Linnemann (Flute / Bass Flute)
Henrik is renowned as one of the most versatile flute players in the UK. Since he graduated from Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music, he has worked in film, radio and theatre as well as pop sessions in and around the north of England. He also fronts the quartet ‘LJQ’ with which he has recorded two albums of his own jazz originals. From his home in Sheffield, he continues to teach and perform and is much in demand not only for his knowledge of the classical flute repertoire, but also for his ability to comfortably improvise in a variety of musical genres.

John Ball (Santoor / Djembe)
John is an accomplished santoor artist who regularly travels across the UK to perform and teach. He has composed and performed music for several theatre productions including North Country Theatre's production of “The Man Who Would Be King.” He also recently completed a tour with eclectic world music group Rafiki Jazz, featuring BBC World Music Award Winner Juldeh Camara. John is based in Sheffield where he works as a Musician in Residence at the University of Sheffield.

Mohamed Assani (Sitar)
Mohamed is widely acclaimed for his mastery & creative use of the sitar. His musical background includes training in Indian Classical, Western Classical & jazz. Mohamed regularly performs across the UK and in Europe as a soloist and with larger ensembles - including members of London's Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Black Dyke Brass Band & Grand Union Orchestra. He has also taken his music to the theatre, composing and performing as part of Rani Moorthy's acclaimed "Dancing Within Walls " and North Country Theatre's "The Man Who Would be King." He lectures in Indian Music & Ensemble Technique at the University of Huddersfield and teaches sitar at the University of Leeds.


Drawn together by a shared desire to create fresh & exciting approaches to music making, Indus brings together four passionate performers with roots in diverse musical styles. Firefly, their first album, represents a significant chapter in the group’s remarkable journey. Through this live studio performance of over an hour of inspired music, Indus have combined carefully crafted arrangements & compositions with free flowing passages of improvisation & interplay. Their music endeavours to navigate through uncharted musical terrain while embracing the rich musical tapestry of India & Pakistan. Firefly mirrors the warmth & spontaneity shared with audiences through their live performances to-date and captures the group’s integrity, sensitivity & aspirational vision. On sale at

Set List

A typical Indus performance usually consists of two x 50 minute sets with a 20 minute interval in between. The group perform their own original repertoire, including the following:

An original composition set in Dorian mode, characterised by offbeat rhythms & contrasting melodic motifs and set in keherwa taal (an 8-beat rhythm cycle).

An upbeat & groovy original composition set in raag Kafi and set in keherwa taal (an 8-beat rhythm cycle).

An original & introspective piece with a poignant vocal element by Shahbaz. Set in rupak taal (a 7-beat rhythm cycle) and dadra taal (a 6-beat rhythm cycle), this piece uses influences from raag Darbari – a raag brought into North Indian music by Mian Tansen, a legendary 16th century composer in Emperor Akbar's court. The word Darbar is derived from Persian and literally means Court. Darbari is considered to be a grave raga, played in the deep of the night and with the potential for profou