Exclusive Premiere: Visita’s Introspective New Song ‘Epiphanies’
Hear the first single off Hyderabad guitarist Vivek Venugopal’s upcoming album ‘The Ascent of Mount Purpose’
As cheesy and overly influenced by motivational quotes as it may sound, every journey begins with a realization. For Hyderabad guitarist Vivek Venugopal aka Visita, he took emotional turmoil and existential angst and turned into an album called The Ascent of Mount Purpose. The fingerstyle guitarist says, “As a person, I am very contemplative, meditative, introspective and spiritually inclined, and I believe that has come out extensively in the music.”
His second album is an 11-track sojourn that involves nothing else but one guitar being played, minus any overdubs, layers or looping. On his 2016 EP Syncretism Vol. 1 and the 2015 debut album Musings, we’ve heard a fairly experimental side of Venugopal. But on his latest, he says he took inspiration from French-Algerian guitarist and composer Pierre Bensusan, whom he studied under in 2016. Venugopal adds, “Apart from this, I also began composing for different instruments, and even made some small orchestral pieces. I stopped composing for the guitar, and just composed. I then used the guitar to execute my ideas. This opened up several possibilities and perspectives.”
The Ascent of Mount Purpose comes across as an autobiographical concept album about the guitarist’s own self-doubting and his journey to overcome psychological hurdles. Almost emphatically, Venugopal says “the music resolves the crisis,” even though these songs prefer to stick to melancholy and reflection for the most part rather than building up any chaos or tension. On his opening track and first single “Epiphanies,” there’s almost an excitement or brightness blended with moroseness, as Venugopal moves along the fretboard with harmonic precision. He says, “I think I’ve stumbled upon this rather unique way of putting across what I want to artistically express, in the form of instrumental music that is interspersed with a poetic narrative. I plan to continue this. It is my hope that people can ‘read the music’ and ‘listen to the narrative’.”
Listen to “Epiphanies” here. Buy the album here.