Hyderabad based interdisciplinary artist and creative educator, Akhil Kodamanchili aka ‘No Hero‘ released a song, “Call of the Void ,” an alternate prog-rock piece that transports you into an alternate world for 5:09 minutes.
As a novice to existential and introspective music, I am writing this review from the perspective of a fresh listener – someone who’s new to the genre but is willing to explore new realms and describe them to you. If you’re like me, you should give “Call of the Void,” a try!
The track is experimentation galore. You discover new ambiances as you progress well within the song. Whether deliberate or a happy accident, the mood progression is what makes “The Sounds Within” an intriguing stream. Akhil described his central message as “some sort of a rebellion theme, mildly doused in apathy with a blurry vision.” I could not find a better phrase to describe the hook of the track.
The guitar strings at 2:45 – now tell me if they don’t tug at your heartstrings. And, the synthesizer samples are tastefully staggered to create a sense of deliberation and provoke anticipation in the listener’s minds. If I could place my finger on one emotion I felt throughout the song; it was a feeling of depth – into the raw emotions of a person, be it cheesy cues or the most confused thoughts; be it far-fetched fear or absolute bliss.
“No Hero” is a bold concept that sways between messages. It doesn’t narrate a story – rather, it invites you to narrate yours. Some might see this as a confusing project and some as a fresh attempt. But, I urge you to give it a shot and experience the music. Respond to the instrumental racks and the transitions between chords rather than finding a central message.
What’s the final word? “Call Of The Void,” is new, absorbing, and even hints at psychedelic vibes at certain parts. The track invites the listener to join in an alternate-reality-fetish, where dilemma and deliberation are embraced or even adored.
May is Mental Health Month. So, let’s start the month by reviewing a track that supports and communicates the angst of those affected by mental illness.
Far Away, by Luksimi is a heart-tugging pop melody that talks about both the good days and the bad ones. The video shows the angst of a young woman when the people she really cares about drift, far away. It talks about depression and how there’s so much going around us that might impact our mental health without us knowing.
They say music heals – and Luksimi’s voice surely has a soothing effect. Her singing was honest and minimalistic and carried a tone of genuine concern. The harmonic layers were textured well – they came at the right places and were not overused. Pay attention to the lyrics because boy, they are sincere. The lines “I watch the skies every day searching for you, you fade away into the night like shooting stars,” speak volumes about the fear of missing someone you really care about.
Produced by Rianjali, the composition is a subtle stack of pianos and synth chords, with a string section in between. The arrangement is simple, no grand gestures there. But, the skill lies in finding the right balance between light layers and ethereal over-the-top sections. The keys and strings shuffled between simple progressions and sustained notes. Tasteful.
What’s the final word? I’d describe Far Away as both mellow and bold at the same time. It talks about what’s important – the ups and downs of life and how it’s okay to celebrate both. But, at the same time, it explores the feeling of missing somebody you love. Watch the video here.
It’s safe to say that the artist , Saaranya, intended through this song to serenade a lover. The lyrics of this song and of course the music that goes along are gentle and comforting. It envelopes one into a little cocoon of trust. Furthermore, the lyrics are comforting to listen to especially since it speaks about how comfortable it is to be around one’s lover. Saaranya has also replaced the word ‘love’ which can be considered to be her own version of expressing love through the colour purple, which is already one that is delicate and indicates fragility she attempts to portray a whole new type of affinity for the one she adores.
For a song this simple, her voice fits right into the little puzzle she’s made for herself. It is calming to listen to her cradle the song and allow it take its own path. The interpretation of this song is pretty simple. It doesn’t have one too many explanations therefore making it the best fit to serenade your special someone. Through the lyrics, she attempts to inform the listener on the amount of trust she holds in her lover, comparing her partner to the moon, the phrase ‘two souls in a cloud’ shows the trust she has in her partner.
Saaranya said – I don’t think hard and fast about creating melodies or lyrics. Whenever I sit down to write something, the words and the music just come to me naturally. I prefer writing lyrics along with the melody as it gives me a clearer idea on where the song is headed. Most of my songs just come to me after I have come up with a chord progression on my guitar. Later I go back to them to make a few alterations wherever necessary. I haven’t really written a track with someone before. It’s mostly just me and the producer for the designated track working together. I like best working with people whose vision for the project matches mine. For, I purple you, the producer was Rwitobroto. I came across his profile on insta and checked out his previous work which suited what I had in mind for my track, and so we ended up working together. I have at least three more singles planned out for release in the coming months. One being I purple you’s remix coming on 30th April. I suggest everyone mark the date in their calendars. It’s something new and unexpected and I would love for everyone to experience it with me.
‘I purple you’ is heartwarming and comforting better yet, it is romance in its most simple form.
Ahmedabad-based guitarist-composer, Chirag Todi is the founder member of the independent band ‘Heat sink’. On ‘Beyond Your Blues’, the 3rd single of his upcoming EP ‘Panodrama’, he’s collaborated with vocalist Vrnda Dhar (from band ‘The Revisit Project’), who also wrote lyrics and co-composed the melody.
Chirag composed the song as a chord-melody on guitar during the lockdown and asked Vrnda Dhar to sing it over as a sketch for online collaboration and then got it developed into a fully produced track over the year.
Other amazing indie artists behind making this beautiful song are Raag Sethi (the founder of Compass Box Studio) to produce the track, play bass and arrange it. Shivang Kapadia (who played drums), Prayag Barooah (from Guwahati) recorded a guitar solo from home, Kandarp Kavishwar played the keys at the studio. The song was then mixed and mastered by Protyay Chakraborty, Video conceptualizing and Direction by Tushar Kejrival, Art work by Nishad and Management by The Alt Bright.
‘Beyond Your Blues’ is completely flavoured by jazz-fusion with elements from pop and soul which is Chirag’s original style of creating music. While Chirag’s guitar work is unconventional with chord changes, his overall style sounds very clean and pleasing to ears. Whereas, Vrnda’s voice classification is a mix of jazzy and punchy and her singing style is definitely powerful!… if you don’t believe me, then replay the mv at 3:10 of the video. The song is very dynamic and expressive as each instrument was recorded live and played almost like an improvisation.
The song lyrics speak of artist dissatisfaction through the song. Chirag said to the sources that- the song is dedicated towards the indie music community. It’s extremely challenging to make a living out of indie music. And artists need to do other necessary things such as a day job.
He talks about the struggle of understanding himself and how to tackle the thoughts of his existence through the song. This song is a product of his vision where he took a break and just focused on creating the music he loves.
In my opinion, if you’re a jazz music lover then you can’t help falling in love with this beautifully experimented music video.
For the upcoming album Coral, Second Sight is back with their second single called as La Hermosa Tristeza on the 12th of March, 2021.
The song which translates into ‘beautiful sadness’ is influenced by brazilian Bolero and spanish composers like Antonio Carlos Jobim and Ivan Lins. La Hermosa Tristeza can be broken down as a song with inventive musical elements.The vocalists, Anusha and Pushkar tried to convey the mood and emotions aroused around the music rather than its detailed picture which is enough for listeners to give a light hearted laugh. While listening, it feels like the song is made of two sections which move around each other. The song is very easy to listen to because the timbre of the melodic line constantly changes as the melody is passed around the different instruments of the family. Succinctly, harmony inspired by Bolero is the strength of the song. Whereas, the ¾ time signature of a song makes it sound more interesting. Music set on slow tempo with repeated melodic setting and rhythm played on snare drums starts the dance.
The people involved in the making of this song are namely: Anusha Ramasubramoney for composition, lyrics and her jazzy smooth vocals; Pushkar Srivastal for composition, mixing, english lyrics and soulful vocals; Ralph Menzes on bass; Jigar Shah playing drums; Jayakrishnan Unnithan for piano and synths; Paul Brown for whistling the Clarinet; Vaibhav Wavikar for percussion; Sameer Shah for drum recording and drum production; Thomas Juth for mastering and Robert Thompson for his artwork.
Second Sight talks about the bittersweet feeling of nostalgia through the song lyrics penned in spanish and english. The duo posted on social sites about the song saying that, “ the feeling of nostalgia is a bittersweet one… The yearning for yesterday for yesterday wars with no real desire to return it, because, is the reversion to the older self really worth the erasure of all the experiences that got you here?”
The song says: I wonder , if you were to appear Would I stay or would I escape? …If you’re looking for a spanish song with Indian roots, ‘La Hermosa Tristeza’ is the one for you. Stream it now.
Manas Jha’s Myrooh will make you want to get up and hit the dance floor. It’s peppy and bright, mixed with perfectly balanced harmonies. Siddharth Basrur, the vocalist, played around with vocal layers and harmonies in a tasteful way, adding an aspect of intrigue throughout the song.
The song begins with electro-pop leads which gets you hooked and curious about what’s in store. Myrooh is a dedication to Manas’s two-year-old daughter, Myra, and the theme is kid-centric with fun visuals in the video.
The music video for Myrooh used wholesome animations to show all the memories of one’s childhood while using modern music samples to keep you tied into the present. The storyline is cute, and as Manas says, it shows “all of Myra’s favorite toys beating all odds and making it to her birthday carnival.”
You have to stick around for the drop at 2:50! Fuzzculture did a phenomenal job producing the track that seamlessly juggled between pop and electronic music while holding the fact that the lyrics are centered around kids.
The entire track warms your heart yet keeps you on your toes, wanting to dance. So, I’d say it achieved an outstanding balance in gripping the listener while holding on to the string of innocence.
The verdict? If you’re looking for a groovy mid-morning track or an exciting hybrid of pop and electro-rock, this is your jam.