Summit Attempt
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Summit Attempt

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"It's been such a long time"

This was a reunion concert with a difference as old-time friends and mid-90s rockers came together at Princeton Club on January 3 with a new sound — and a new name. Summit Attempt is the brainchild of Sumit Bhattacharya, the guitarist, lyricist and vocalist for the band, which also includes Dwaipayan Saha on drums, Mainak ‘Bumpy’ Nagchoudhury on bass and Sayantan ‘Bumba’ Sengupta on guitar.

After a musical hiatus of almost a decade, these former band-mates came together in June 2007 to record an eight-song album called Blue Bugyal. All of them have played with Latin jazz band Orient Express and were part of the Calcutta-based jam band Easy Riders, which was around from 1993-98 and was well-known for its originals.

Sumit, who stopped playing for a while to pursue a career in journalism in Mumbai, has returned to music, calling it a “curse” he “just couldn’t be parted from”. Meeting up with old friends two days before their recording, a shared idea and common musical ears culminated in Blue Bugyal. “Bugyal refers to high-altitude Himalayan meadows. Having spent a lot of time trekking, most of my songs were written there,” says Sumit. The album was produced in Canada and will be released in 2008.

Summit Attempt’s music is influenced by singer-songwriters like Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Neil Young as well as jazz-rock guru John McLaughlin and Miles Davis, not to mention the jam sensibilities of the Grateful Dead. The band is heavy on instrumentals. “As we grow older, we have less to say,” laughs Sumit.

The first show at Princeton was packed with friends, musicians on the circuit and Easy Riders loyalists. The band’s song list for the evening included Changes, Some People, the instrumental Journey Within and Farewell, as well as covers of Calcutta rock pioneers High, Blue Sky by the Allman Brothers, Chick Corea’s Spain and an interpretation of Hendrix’s Purple Haze. Plenty of improvisations — often mellow, often bluesy — characterised the sound.

“Summit Attempt is a dream and the whole idea behind it is to enjoy music and do what we like,” says Sumit, whose plans for the band include more gigs in the city and beyond.

- The Telegraph, Kolkata, India

"Internet review"

I have to admit that I do love the blues, and I do love blues rock as equally and I had been grooving on Sumit's Changes (November 2007) for days before I realised I was listening to de blooz from the other side of the world to the Mississippi delta. In fact, Sumit is an Indian born artist which surprised the hell out of me because - if nothing else - Changes smacked of authenticity. It was also a knockout track in every way, making it into my year end awards for 2007 which is no mean achievement for a first track. Suffice to say, the second track - Whiff Of Home (December 2007) - didn't make me rave so much but I was always one for high hopes. Still good enough to gather a highly recommended though...

Q. What is it about India and rock? A. **** knows. But it works.

Farewell is the third Sumit track to come my way then and co-incidently is 'the first song I (Sumit, that is) ever wrote, recorded 13 years later. Billed as Classic Rock, it has more than a touch of Pat Metheny about it, which means that you should find it 'fiddly' enough for your ears. In other words, there is plenty here to keep your attention, especially if you are known to prostrate yourself before Rock Gods. I mentioned before that whoever sings on these tracks has the vocal tones of a young David Bowie - and the musical standard is just as high. Class classic rock, even.

Stylistically too, it owes much to the shadow of the Bowie who used to rock like a mofo, before he became too rich and famous to care. What gets me about this track (nay ALL of this artists tracks) is the amount of sheer confidence the band display, and the authentically western sound they come up with. With a sound and style halfway between the UK and America (and the finer musical points thereof) Sumit could be one of India's Rock Gods. Certainly if this band played live they would gather fans by the armful, no doubt about it whatsoever. A bit too complex for an instant hit, Farewell pays off with repeated playing and then it becomes well special.

Highly Recommended Classic Rock (by way of India) - Steve Gilmore


Blue Bugyal, a self-produced eight-song album. The songs are available for streaming listening on our website



Summit Attempt's influences span from Jimi Hendrix to Shpongle, from Jaco Pastorius to Primal Scream, from Allman Brothers to Ozric Tentacles.
Sumit, the founder guitar player for the Kolkata-based Latin-jazz band The Orient Express and now a senior editor with, India's largest online portal, is the driving force behind the band. Though Summit Attempt -- website: -- has been playing together as a band since just September 2007, the musicians are former Orient Express mates.
Doi, Summit Attempt's drummer, was also the vocalist and percussion player for Kolkata-based rock band Krosswindz.
Bumpy is one of India’s busiest and best bass players whose credits include touring Europe with author-turned-singer Amit Chowdhury’s band This is Not Fusion, and playing with Tanmay Bose, one of sitar maestro Pandit Ravi Shankar’s favourite tabla players, and percussion maestro Taufiq Qureshi. Bumpy has also stunned many a visiting jazz musician with his virtuosity, and played with many of them across India — at jazz festivals, at pubs, at concerts, you name it.
Sayantan has scored the music for a National Award-winning movie in India.
Together, they create a sound that is a heady cocktail of the blues, jazz, rock, electronica and Latin, with rock as the solid foundation.
To watch videos of Summit Attempt live, click