Album Review: Gingerfeet – High & Above: The First Wave
Kolkata experimental funk rock band bring catchy hard rock tunes on debut album
It’s been less than a year following Kolkata funk rock band Gingerfeet’s big win at the Hornbill National Rock Competition in December last year, but they’ve put their prize money [Rs 5 lakhs] to good use and released their debut album, High and Above: The First Wave.
The nine-track album, High and Above: The First Wave, is far less experimental than the band claims, but recalls Mumbai alt rock band Zero, who could pull off pretty much any genre on stage. On the album, Gingerfeet lead with funk. Bassist Lokes Mangar’s slaps and taps his way through the catchiest grooves on songs like “God Forbid” and “Stars.”
Gingerfeet go the hard rock way through most of their album, sticking to gang backing vocals and guitar solos [courtesy Vedant Razz] on the RATM-goes-dreamy political number “No Division.” The more laidback, least loud number “Am I Dreaming Or What?” is passable, but their attempt at toning things down in the second half of the album with tracks such as hippie-rock “High and Above,” catches our attention. Although Gingerfeet rarely break out of that hard rock bracket, even when they throw in shades of prog rock on “The Vibe,” complete with double bass-drumming from Abhinandan Mukherjee.
High and Above: The First Wave is about the band feeling elated, and song titles like “Am I Dreaming Or What?” [our favorite Indianism] add to the band’s overall message. Continuing in that line, Gingerfeet closes with [presumably] a nod toward to the future, with the groove-laden “Game On,” throwing the challenge open.
Gingerfeet competently delivers funk rock and manages a fresh take on it for most part on High and Above: The First Wave. The debut is definitely an attempt that inspires you to watch the band on stage, and that’s a great start.
Key tracks: “God Forbid,” “Stars.”
Gingerfeet releases physical copies of High and Above: The First Wave on September 27th, 2013 at Someplace Else, Kolkata. Entry: Free. Event details here. The album releases digitally on October 10th.