It is mainly a ritual art that is being sustained among the Kuruppa community of Thrissur and Malappuram districts.


Poora pattukal

Also known as ‘therippattukal’ or ‘Bharanippattu’, the songs are fabricated in obscene vocabulary. These are sung to please the Goddess during the festivals of Kodungallur Bharani and Cherthala pooram.



Also called Ayyappan pattu, it is the performance of a ritual art form praising Lord Ayyappa.


Sopana sangeetham

This distinctive style of music owes its origin to the Bhakti movement in Kerala. It is performed in front of the sanctum sanctorum of temples and hence the name ‘sopanam’. Most of the songs are based on Jayadeva’s Geetha Govinda and is accompanied by edakka and chengila. Edakka is regarded as ‘Deva Vadyam’ and its 64 balls is said to represent the 64 art forms.


The Melams

Panchavadyam is an inseparable part of poorams and temple festivals of Kerala. The name means five instruments and includes suddha maddalam, kombu, edakka, elathalam and thimila. The number can vary but the minimum requirement is three thimilas, one suddha maddalam, two elathalams, two kombus and one edakka beside the sankh. Thrissur pooram has a spectacular display of panchavadyam.

Confined to temples, Pancharimelam includes, chenda, kombu, kuzhal and elathalam. For a complete performance thirty three veekuchendas, thirty three elathalams and eleven each of kombu, kuzhal and muttuchenda are used.

Pandimelam differs from Pancharimelam slightly, though the instruments used are the same. In pancharimelam, two sticks are used for beating the chenda, but in pandimelam, only one stick is used. Also the blowing of kuzhal is done in Bhairav Raga in Pandimelam. This can be seen in its full splendour during Thrissur pooram.

In Thayambaka only chendas and elathalams are used. The artist uses his palm and stick for drumming. Singarimelam is also another popular performance using chendas.