Aswekeepsearching Turn to Crowdfunding for New Album
The Ahmedabad/Pune/Mumbai-based rockers’ first studio album ‘Khwaab’ is a deceptively titled “aggressively emotional”offering
With a name like Khwaab, it is natural to assume that instrumental rock band Aswekeepsearching’s [AWKS] upcoming album would be, in most likelihood, an ambient and trippy record. But guitarist Uddipan Sarmah says their 10-track album, due in October, is actually more on the aggressive side. Sarmah adds, “I’d say it’s aggressively emotional. The guitars have gone on the heavier side.”
Aswekeepsearching’s newfound hostile sound can also be attributed to its metal-leaning band members — Pune experimental metal band Noiseware’s drummer Gautam Deb and bassist Bob Alex are now part of the band, and Sarmah has also roped in Noiseware guitarist/producer Adhiraj Singh to track the album. When Sarmah talks about how they tracked drums at That Studio in Mumbai last month, it’s evident that it is going to be one weighty album, considering drummers Rahul Hariharan [from Mumbai metal band Bhayanak Maut] and producer Anupam Roy were overlooking the band’s studio time. Add to that Mumbai thrash metal band Devoid’s bassist Abhishek Kamdar lending his pedals to Alex while tracking at Singh’s Refractor Studio in Pune, and you know that melancholy is the last thing you’ll associate with the upcoming record.
While their 2014 EP Growing Suspicions was recorded by Sarmah at his BlueTree Studio setup in Ahmedabad, this time around, the guitarist decided to hand over production duties to Singh. Sarmah jokes, “You know how busy I am with other things. I don’t have time now,” referring to programming and handling tour series 2Stroke Tour. With about 20 gigs under their belt in a year, Sarmah is putting all gig revenue into recording, but realized they needed more for CD production, merchandize, artwork and a music video. Says Sarmah, “We never restricted ourselves. We’re a new band, we have a new fanbase, now we know who follows us.” For Khwaab, AWKS hope to raise Rs 60,000 from crowdfunding, adding to the Rs 65,000 already invested in the album. Says Sarmah, “We don’t want to work on a loan. All we’re asking for is for pre-orders.”
With Sarmah in Ahmedabad, guitarist-keyboardist Shawn Gurung in Mumbai with Deb and Alex in Pune, the making Khwab saw the band exchange ideas over the Internet every day. Inspired by post-rock bands such as God Is An Astronaut, the album features two retooled songs from Growing Suspicions [“Banshee” and “In Circles”]. The occasional vocal melodies find their way through in songs tentatively titled “Attiva” and “Khwaab.” In addition to an all-out heavy closer “B-303,” they meld melancholy with a rising crescendo on “What If _?” Says Sarmah about the track, “There’s a darkness to the track, but the music rises to reflect how we can be happy despite sadness in life or society.”
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