Rolling Stone IndiaMusic, Gigs, Culture and More!2015-03-28T05:38:36Zhttp://rollingstoneindia.com/feed/atom/WordPressMerlin D'Souzahttp://rollingstoneindia.comhttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=525482015-03-28T05:38:36Z2015-03-28T05:38:36ZJazz pianist Merlin D'Souza on the Mumbai-based blues and jazz vocalist
Vivienne has a commendable voice. It has an international quality to it. It is rocky and bluesy at the same time. With her range, she is a great soprano singer. She is a well-rounded, consummate performer. She interacts with the audience and the musicians and always shares a great rapport with the crowd. She also gives a lot of freedom to the musicians on stage. Most of the singers stick to a certain structure. But that is not the case with her.
We have worked and performed together a lot. Vivienne is always open to ideas. Like I said before, she gives a lot of freedom to those who work with her. Although music is disciplined and certain rules have to be adhered, she likes to explore new things. She has always put a lot of faith in me and trusts me with the ideas that I come up with.
A few years back, we performed a blues, rock and jazz set at Razzberry Rhinoceros at Juhu Hotel. She was with her guitar and I was playing the piano and we had a huge group of musicians. We mostly performed covers, with a few originals in between and it was certainly a memorable performance. I feel we bring out the best in each other. Every time one does well, the other is also very happy.
]]>0Anurag Tagathttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=528742015-03-27T12:31:22Z2015-03-27T12:11:35ZThe Mumbai heavy metal band, who will release their full-length album in May, have roped in former members for a special set this week
There’s a big change coming for Mumbai heavy metal band Albatross as they ready their full-length album Fear From the Skies. Bassist Riju Dasgupta aka Dr. Hex says that he’s getting sick of horror – a genre that has always been linked to the band, right from his own blood-splattered stage attire to their previous releases such as Dinner Is You and The Kissing Flies. What’s more, he says their upcoming album will be their most accessible album. Says Dasgupta, “It’s still as eccentric as we like to be, but it’s more listener-friendly – we’ve got big choruses, and it’s more heavy metal.”
There’s still a horror story edge to the two concept stories that are part of the six-track album. Dasgupta came up with stories for three songs, while drummer Jay Thacker wrote the story for the other three dabbling in everything from murderous clowns to Dr. Hex’s origin story. The band, who recruited a third guitarist, Varun Singh in August last year, began recording in 2013 with bassist-producer Ashwin Shriyan from Mumbai extreme metallers Demonic Resurrection. Says Dasgupta about Singh joining, “Varun has become the value addition guy. All the riffs were done by the time he joined, but he’s added one solo on ‘Jugglehead the Clown’ and added layers on a song called ‘The Raptorsville Fair’.” Dasgupta adds that they decided to add Singh after they realized guitarists Nishith Hegde and Vigneshkumar Venkatraman are often busy with their other bands, including Demonic Resurrection and prog death metal band Orion.
Now with three guitarists on board, it’s no surprise to hear that among the six tracks on Fear From the Skies, they have 16 guitar solos, four of which appear on “Jugglehead the Clown,” a story about a clown who can detach and juggle his head. Says Dasgupta about the song “Empire of Albatross,” which begins with a western classical-influenced guitar lead by Venkatraman, “It’s good that our guitarists have radically different styles. It almost became a thrash metal song, since that’s Nishith’s biggest influence.”
In the run-up to the album release on Mumbai underground record label Transcending Obscurity India, Albatross are playing a covers-heavy set at Cult Lounge in Belapur to celebrate five years since their first EP, Dinner Is You, launched. Former members such as Shrikant Sreenivasan [from prog rock band Coshish], Raj Bhattacharyya [with Dasgupta in his heavy metal band Primitiv] and guests such as Sunneith Revankar [from metallers Bhayanak Maut].
Fear From the Skies tracklist
1. “The Raptorsville Fair”
2. “Jugglehead The Clown”
3. “Children of the Cloud”
4. “In the Lair of Dr. Hex”
5. “Tale of Two Tyrants”
6. “The Empire of Albatross”
Albatross, Mindshift, Hellwind, Guns Reloaded perform at Cult Lounge, Belapur on March 29th, 2015. Entry: Rs 500 [full cover] Event details here.
The first time I heard the name Vasundhara [from Adil & Vasundhara] was from a friend. My friend was like “Oh my god, you have to hear her voice.” I already liked the name Vasundhara because it is similar to mine and has the same meaning. When I saw one of their live performance videos on YouTube, I was completely blown away and became an instant fan of her voice. So smooth, flawless, sensual and powerful. She has an amazing control over her voice and is so effortless. I used to follow Adil and Vasundhara’s jazz songs and was later thrilled to know that they were finally working on an album. I always wanted to catch their live performance, but somehow happened to miss it. I got an opportunity to watch Vasundhara play live for the first time in JD Awards in 2014 I think. She has an amazing stage presence, perfect pitch and poise. Easily one of my favourite voices in the country.
I also got to meet her in person there brief ly and complimented her too. It broke my heart to hear Adil and Vasundhara part as a duo. But I wish people get to hear more and more of her voice in the coming time. We need it.
Oh and she is very pretty too, which is a bonus. [And I am straight].
Once again, we talked to 10 of the hottest artists who are climbing the charts, breaking the Internet or just dominating our office stereos. This month: LunchMoney Lewis’ everydude pop, recent Billboard Hot 100 addition Tori Kelly, the mysterious Chicago rap crew Goodbye Tomorrow, lo-fi punks Hinds and more.
Lunchmoney Lewis | Courtesy of Columbia Records
Sounds Like: Something between Southern soul, Miami bass and Randy Newman
For Fans of: Cee Lo Green, Aloe Blacc, Solange
Why You Should Pay Attention: The everyman vibe and retro feel of his quirky single “Bills” — currently on its way to 2 million views on YouTube — should speak for itself. If not: The Miami-bred, L.A.-stationed songwriter, 27, is signed to Dr. Luke’s Kemosabe imprint; he got a feature on Nicki Minaj’s The Pinkprint(“Trini Dem Girls”) as a virtual unknown; cowrote songs for Jessie J (“Burnin’ Up”) and Fifth Harmony (“Bo$$”); and, yes, has one of the best stage names in the current pop landscape. He says producer Salaam Remi gave it to him as a kid: “He was getting a haircut and I was hanging out with him. And he was like, ‘Yo, if I was a little chubby dude, I’d call myself LunchMoney.’ Everybody started laughing, and it kind of just stuck.” Though no release date is set, his debut album, executive produced by Wallpaper.’s Ricky Reed, is nearing completion.
He Says: Though “Bills” gets by on its world-weary, working-stiff lyrics, it actually came from a place of youthful fear: Lewis never held a steady job before and the real world came crashing down fast. “I had just moved to L.A., officially, got my apartment and stuff, and I was like, ‘Man, I got a light bill I gotta pay, I got wi-fi, I gotta put food on the fridge.’ I just got my deal, I was like, ‘All right. Time to hustle.’ No more calling home and being like, ‘Ma, can I just hold like 80 more dollars?’ That was the energy I was in. ‘Ahhh! I got bills!‘”
Hear for Yourself: “Bills” has already gone to Number One in Australia and, with any luck, might end up the “16 Tons” for the Spotify generation. Christopher R. Weingarten
Hinds | Courtesy of http://hinds.bandcamp.com/
Sounds Like: An all-female Ramones, if they spent more time in the sunshine.
For Fans of: Mac DeMarco, Vivian Girls, TacocaT
Why You Should Pay Attention: After a marathon SXSW (16 shows in all), Madrid-based Hinds are on pretty much everyone’s radar thanks to their hyper-energetic, elegantly sloppy garage-pop. Fronted by 23-year-olds Carlotta Cosials and Ana Perrote, the all-female four-piece admits they’re still learning their instruments, but the exuberance that defines their live shows can’t be taught. Mixing super-lo-fi guitar chugging with effervescent vocal harmonies, they’re what it would sound like if a Sixties girl-group was born in a Nineties Seattle basement. Though they only have a pair of EPs out, Hinds plan to record their first full-length next month, just as soon as they get done touring the U.S.
They Say: “We used to listen to more American music,” says Cosials. “We really need a new playlist for our lives because we’ve been listening to the same albums for, like, a whole year. We need more. Right now we’ve been listening to Mac DeMarco, Shannon and the Clams, the Black Lips and the Velvet Underground. But we really need new inspiration, you know?”
Hear for Yourself: “Castigadas En El Granero” — one of four tracks on the band’s site — translates to “punished in the barn.”
Tori Kelly | Courtesy of Capitol Music Group
Sounds Like: An all-ages dance club
For Fans of: Lauryn Hill, Stripped-era Christina Aguilera, Ariana Grande
Why You Should Pay Attention: Tori Kelly’s single “Nobody Love” has got a bounce to it, blending Nineties R&B with pop-radio friendly EDM beats. After establishing herself on the internet by uploading acoustic covers of popular songs like Frank Ocean’s “Thinkin Bout You,” Kelly found the perfect audience for her catchy, soulful originals. Her webcam days have long been over since Scooter Braun became her manager — she’s since gotten a deal with Capitol Records and an opening spot at Ed Sheeran’s sold out Madison Square Garden show. Kelly’s as-yet-untitled major label debut is due this summer and will be executive produced by hitmaker Max Martin.
She Says: “I would hope that my music can inspire people and stand out in a way that is really just me pouring my heart out into my music. If nothing else, there are no gimmicks. There’s nothing that’s fake. Everything I’m doing is just me being me. I hope that would inspire other people in some way, in whatever they’re doing in their lives.”
Hear for Yourself: The infectious “Nobody Love” has garnered more than a million YouTube plays and is currently at Number 80 on the Hot 100. Brittany Spanos
Goodbye Tomorrow : A still from “Jay Z”
Sounds Like: Low-end bass rumble infiltrated by dagger-sharp, aggro wordplay
For Fans of: Kanye West, Childish Gambino, Drake
Why You Should Pay Attention: It’s only a matter of time before we’re rewarded with the identity of this Chicago rapper and his collaborative cohorts. For now, Goodbye Tomorrow remains a mystery. “If we focus on the core content, the arc of everything, you get the truth,” says the philosophical rapper. “That’s all I’m trying to do.” Signed to Rostrum Records (who discovered Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller), the Windy City collective, principally comprised of the rapper and one key producer (“I hate when people say movement but that’s the only way I can describe it,” the rapper says), have released two tracks to date: “100K” and the the electro-tinged, trunk-rattling “Jay Z,” the latter coming complete with a trippy video that’s already racked up over 100,000 views on YouTube.
They Say: “It’s exciting to me to see people fuck with us just off these two songs,” the rapper says.”‘Jay Z’ and ‘100K,’ that’s a very, very small percentage of the overall picture. The tip of the iceberg. There is so much different stuff that hasn’t even been showcased yet. We’re just trying to do some cool shit every day.”
Hear for Yourself: The rapper spits over pummeling bass on breakout single, “Jay Z.” Dan Hyman
Bosse-De-Nage | A still from the All Fours album preview
Sounds Like: Deafheaven doing some moon-bathing.
For Fans of: Darkthrone, Slint, headbanging while shoegazing.
Why You Should Pay Attention: Despite rarely playing shows and even more rarely doing interviews, Bay Area, California’s Bosse-De-Nage have managed to cultivate a healthy buzz around their mix of corpse-paint-peeling black metal and cardigan-unraveling Nineties indie rock, which vocalist Bryan Manning colorfully describes as sounding like “the chance meeting on a dissecting-table of a sewing machine and an umbrella.” A 2012 split EP with friends and aesthetic kinsmen Deafheaven raised their profile, but Bosse-De-Nage’s new full-length and finest hour yet, All Fours, released on tastemaking metal boutique label Profound Lore, should firmly establish them as one of heavy music’s most intriguing voices.
They Say: “When we started this band, we agreed that we only wanted to play on special occasions with other like-minded bands. We’ve all previously played in bands who took any show that came along and that often meant playing a set in front of another group of bands waiting to play after us for their girlfriends,” Manning says of Bosse-De-Nage’s infrequent live performances. “The worst show we played was in the Netherlands on a very short European tour we did in 2013. The show took place on Queen’s Day, which is a huge celebration across the Netherlands. Sort of like every American drinking holiday rolled into one. The town was swarming with parties and drunken teenagers. Hardly anyone was interested in going to a metal show, so we played to handful of people. It was basically the type of show I just mentioned.”
Hear for Yourself: Buzzing-bee riffs dive through major-keyed smoke trails on “A Subtle Change,” six minutes of Bosse-De-Nage at their most straightforward — which is to say, not straightforward at all. Brandon Geist
Algiers | Courtesy of WFN Productions/Matador Records
Sounds Like: The Death Grips of gospel torching the South’s dark underbelly.
For Fans of: TV On The Radio, Nick Cave, Kanye West
Why You Should Pay Attention: Tucked inside D’Angelo’s 2000 masterpiece Voodoo was rapper-poet Saul Williams’ furious liner notes taking aim at the state of black music. (“Most of my peers seem to idolize Donald Trump more than Sly Stone,” Williams wrote.) A Georgia State University student named Franklin James Fisher pasted those words on his wall and never forgot them. In the mid-aughts, Fisher linked up with ex-classmates with post-punk leanings, Lee Tesche and Ryan Mahan, and pieced together Algiers based upon the parallel energies of punk and gospel traditions. “Both types of music come from dispossessed populations and marginalized populations,” Fisher says. “We decided to follow that down as far as we possibly could.” In 2012 and 2013, they released “Blood” and “Claudette,” biting singles that combine Blind Boys of Alabama-style vocals and harmonies, and beastly, bent-metal beats. At that point, Matador Records had heard enough to be enthralled, and booked Algiers to record at 4AD Studios with Tom Morris (Bloc Party, Lydia Lunch) in London. Drinking “sort of like a hot toddy,” Fisher punched in his vocals late at night with the lights down low. The results are spiritual, political and confrontational. Algiers will open on Interpol’s spring tour, and later do dates supporting their self-titled album, expected this summer.
They Say: “I still don’t consider myself a singer,” says Fisher. “I appreciate the aesthetic of just really not caring — not trying to sound pretty. Especially if you’re angry, just shout it out. Any sort of traditional negro spiritual music, gospel music, soul or R&B, the best versions were when they were just raw and emotional and not overly produced. In every genre across the board in popular music, things are way too packaged, way too smooth. It’s not even human anymore. Everything on the radio is Auto-Tuned. The edges are all trimmed. We want things to be rough around the edges. That’s something to embrace…. Bob Dylan made it okay not to have a traditionally nice voice. In the black community, the standard is really high as to who can be called a singer. That’s why I’m so hesitant to call myself a singer. My sisters are both amazing singers. I just kinda scream and do my thing.”
Hear for Yourself: Algiers build a terrordome where Fisher can shred his larynx on “But She Was Not Flying.” Reed Fischer
Ibeyi | Courtesy of XL Recordings
Sounds Like: The Afro-Cuban diaspora, filtered through contemporary trip-hop and the uncanny harmonies of twin sisters
For Fans of: James Blake, CocoRosie, FKA Twigs
Why You Should Pay Attention: Twins Naomi and Lisa-Kaindé Díaz moved to Paris from their native Cuba as small children. They never stopped living with their artistic heritage, though — their late father, famed percussionist, Angá Díaz played with acts like Buena Vista Social Club. After a few live performances together around Paris, their take on Afro-Cuban rhythms, Yoruba chanting and contemporary hip-hop, electronic and lounge attracted the heads of XL Recordings. Four months after their first big show in Paris, they scored a deal. Four months after that, they had finished their self-titled debut album with producer Richard Russell, released earlier this year. Now, less than a year from the beginning, they’ve just played a spate of lauded performances at SXSW and are finishing their first U.S. tour.
They Say: Part of their debut in the U.S. includes the opportunity to educate new audiences about the various roots of Cuban music. “Our music is Cuban, but it’s Yoruban,” says Naomi. “It’s not salsa.”
“For people, when you say you’re Cuban, they just visualize cigars, rum and salsa,” says Lisa-Kaindé, as Naomi finishes her sentence simultaneously and laughs. “Yoruba is from Nigeria, and when the slaves were shipped to Cuba their culture remained. So we are just explaining to people why we are singing in an African language.”
Each time they do so, they revisit intimate memories of their father and their late older sister, Yanira, who died in 2013. “Ibeyi,” the album, is an homage to them, say the sisters, but revisiting feelings about them onstage every night feels positive. “I think it’s our way to feel good about it, and to talk about them, and I think we needed it,” says Lisa-Kaindé. “No really, it feels good!”
Hear for Yourself: “River” mixes unmistakably Afro-Caribbean dipping melodies with slowly rattling, Portishead-style beats — and ends with a chant to Yoruba deity Oshun. Arielle Castillo
Doldrums | Courtesy : Sub Pop Records
Sounds Like: Drifting between EDM and punk tents at a festival.
For Fans of: Animal Collective, the Prodigy, Suicide
Why You Should Pay Attention: The brainchild of Montreal electronic-music experimentalist Airick Woodhead, Doldrums never sounds like any one thing: serene bliss on one song, an epileptic nightmare on another, an EDM moshpit here, ADHD electro confusion there. Woodhead spent the last two years conceiving the group’s latest, The Air-Conditioned Nightmare, collaborating with Björk and Prodigy producer Damian Taylor and Weezer engineer Shawn Everett. It’s a sound he fine-tuned while playing performance-art spaces, like Montreal’s the Torn Curtain, where he could get away with anything. “My music wouldn’t have worked in clubs or bars right away and I had to adjust a lot musically when I started touring,” he says. “DIY spaces and communities are breeding grounds for creativity.”
The one thing that connects the songs and their many styles is pads of fuzzy synth, which he says are spillover from his days as a guitarist. “Well when I started playing music I was listening to bands like the Verve, Stone Roses, My Bloody Valentine and stuff, playing guitar with lots of effects,” he says. “I wanted to keep doing that while moving beyond the guitar, so I started using a sampler. I’d like to be as articulate and expressive with a sampler as with a guitar.”
He Says: “One time at the Torn Curtain, there was a big night, mostly the after-hours type of crowd. Most of the night would be DJs which keep everyone happy, but me and a couple of the other guys who lived there went on did a kind of electronics-and-drums live improv noise set. I guess it started pissing off some people.
“This huge Juggalo-type guy in a suit right up front starts yelling at me and trying to get my attention while I’m playing. I thought, ‘Shit, this guy is gonna clobber me.’ I was already pretty high on mushrooms and I had a baseball bat onstage, just for peace of mind, so I felt pretty safe. So I just bring him up on stage and give him some drumsticks and get him banging on the drums while I bat someone’s shoes into the audience. And he had a great time! It’s like, you want to create chaos with your shows but bring people into it rather than push them away.”
Hear for Yourself: Doldrums’ cool-as-a-cucumber, anything-can-happen dance-floor stomper “Hotfoot” perfectly shows off Woodhead’s penchant for psychedelic brooding and electronic explosions. By Kory Grow
Della Mae | Courtesy of the artist
For Fans of: Alison Krauss, Bonnie Raitt, the Dixie Chicks
Why You Should Pay Attention: This four-woman band (started in Boston, but now spread across New Hampshire, Nashville and Brooklyn) scored a Grammy nomination for Best Bluegrass Album two years ago for This World Oft Can Be. Now, working with producer Jacquire King (Tom Waits, Norah Jones), they’ve expanded their sonic palette and slowed down the pace on Della Mae (out May 12th), even delivering a great, soulful cover of the Rolling Stones’ “No Expectations.”
They Say: Woodsmith says the band thrives on the road due to the kindness of fans — staying at their homes, eating their home-cooked meals and accepting their invitations to go whitewater rafting. “Success for us looks like being able to be on the road 100 days a year and then live the lives we want back home. Not extravagant. I don’t need a million dollars.”
Hear for Yourself: “Empire” is a fiddle-fried piece of postcolonial feminism. Gavin Edwards
BK Bambino | Courtesy of the artist
Sounds Like: Late-night, “Wait, let me load YouTube” party cuts that eventually have the whole room singing along
For Fans of: Chance the Rapper, Danny Brown, 2 Chainz
Why You Should Pay Attention: Though BK Bambino has been rapping since age six, the Chicago native didn’t begin taking it seriously until a high-school shoulder injury set back his chances of playing quarterback in college. Then again, “serious” isn’t a word that most would associate with the 20-year-old MC: Bambino’s bars are usually playful, and his most recent music video finds him terrorizing his hometown while dressed as a bearded, overweight cop. This winter, he used the money saved working at a car dealership to move to Los Angeles, where he’s working on a mixtape produced partially by D Phelps, the frequent Vic Mensa collaborator who contributed production to Kanye West’s forthcoming LP.
He Says: “Since the song was so fun to make, we felt that the video should have the same type of vibe — show people character. I’m big into Martin Lawrence, and there was a character on Martin, an officer or whatever, and basically we tried to reenact his whole thing. I like putting on a show. I want my shows to be plays — actors and all of that on the stage. That sheriff costume can be like my Kanye Graduation bear.
Hear for Yourself: “Sheriff” opens with a distorted riff that Phelps recorded on Voice Memo (“I said, ‘Bro, that’s about to be terrible'”) and comes together when crystal-clear piano chords float over the hook. Bambino plays it just right, wilding out but never losing the beat.
]]>0Rolling Stone Indiahttp://verfilmesonlinehd.orghttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=528412015-03-27T07:08:10Z2015-03-27T07:08:10ZThe special classic edition two CD album features the Jazz musician’s compilation of timeless tracks
Miles Davis | Courtesy of Peter Buitelaar/Wikimedia Commons
Released as part of Sony Music Entertainment’s ‘The Essential’ series and the Miles 75 Anniversary program, the compilation album brings together classics by jazz legends.
Featured on the album are American saxophonist and composer Charles Parker Jr., musician, composer and arranger Gerry Mulligan, pianist Bud Powell, American pianist and composer Ahmad Jamal, pianist, composer and arranger Gil Evans, composer and trumpeter Miles Davis himself and more.
Additionally, the 23-track album consists of archival images of the artists.
Zayn Malik | Courtesy of Eva Renaldi/ Wikimedia Commons
Today was a heartbreaking day for One Direction fans, as Zayn Malik announced his departure from the group and stated that he wants “to be a normal 22-year-old.” “I think I’d love to be involved with it still, because obviously, we’ll be working in the industry for an extended amount of time and you get used to it,” Malik said in a lost interview with Rolling Stone from 2012 about what he would do if he quit the band. “Even if it wasn’t as public or out there as what we do now, if it was just something even in the background, working as a studio songwriter, producing, that would always be a cool thing to do.”
Fans have taken to social media to express their grief and there have been some very intense reactions. Here are five of the most insane:
]]>0Akshai Sarinhttp://rollingstoneindia.comhttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=527372015-03-26T14:45:25Z2015-03-26T11:22:56ZIn conversation with Grammy-nominated electro producer Pretty Lights, who performs in India next month
In May 2014, my brother Aashrai and I first met Derek [Vincent Smith], at the International Music Summit [IMS] in Ibiza. We had heard so much about him through a common friend [his manager], Randy. We hit it off instantly, realizing we shared a lot in common ‑ we were really interested in music below 120bpm and we both also had our ‘small town America’ life experiences. Derek turned out to be one of the warmest, most unassuming, and curiously intelligent musicians I’ve met. He invited us to hang out in Lisbon, Portugal, where we met and talked about everything under the sun – from Indian culture to instruments that create sound and music to Cosmic data readings.
The American electronica producer was nominated at the 56th annual Grammy Awards in 2014 for his album Color Map of the Sun, which was up against the likes of albums by Daft Punk, Kaskade, Calvin Harris and Disclosure in the category of Best Dance/Electronica Album. We’re really lucky to finally have him perform in India. Below is an excerpt of the first conversation we had last year, about his roots and his music:
What’s inspired you?
I’ve always been motivated to make an album as good as my influences.
We first met at IMS, which is a dance music platform. Are you heading beyond the 100bpm vibe?
[Laughs uncontrollably]. So Randy’s been telling me to come over there [IMS] for a while now. And he sold it to me through the performance at Dalt Villa, which is a world heritage site. I’ve always been obsessed with Pink Floyd’s Live at Pompeii and always wanted to play at places like that. And of course, I worked on the IMS anthem.
Color Map of the Sun… Dark Side of the Moon…
You know it! It feels good because I funded and marketed that album myself. It’s always been an underground thing but then you hit number one… then people start thinking you’re selling out… but I didn’t make music [for the Grammy.] That’s why I want to keep it real when I come to India.
It’s all about the live jam thing
I like the live instruments direction we’re headed in… performing with musicians, deconstructing parts on the fly. The video of that Chicago drummer laying down the beat on Chikoo Fenny [an unreleased track named “Fenny” by Chris McGuinness and Sarin with Daniel Crane on drums] is sick by the way. That’s what it’s about… musicians and vintage instruments. That’s what I’m doing in Portugal – there’s a crazy instrument that I need to check out.
Where are you from in the US?
It’s a small town…
It’s OK I went to school in Appleton, Wisconsin
Oh , then you know what I’m talking about. I was born in Sheridan in Wyoming [you didn’t find that on Wikipedia until a while ago] but I really grew up in Colorado. That’s why I’m such a marijuana advocate.
Yeah we could see on stage! You claimed it was sleep deprivation. Colorado, then it’s in your genes.
Right yeah, it’s in my genes… people think I’m stoned all the time.
Yeah someone asked me if I was stoned at age 12.
Me too, and I have a deep voice…
So tell me about the Grammy nomination.
Yeah, moving to a new booking agency, combined with the Grammy nomination has seen an influx of global booking requests. It’s funny how the Grammy nomination has had a much bigger impact outside the US. It was surprising at first.
[American electro producer] Michal Menert’s [the first artist signed onto Pretty Lights Music label] been to India. What’s the vibe?
He’s been there a couple of times and really loves it. I think he even proposed to his girlfriend there. I’m working on a record right now… in full album mode… so the India festival season  seems out. What I really want to do is come and do PL shows, with a ton of guerilla style promotion. I’m trying to build something organically like I did in the States.
So then what’s the India plan?
I’ve got time blocked off for the first bit of 2015. Whenever I get the chance to go somewhere exotic, pretty, and amazingly beautiful I try to spend as much time recording street musicians and filming. So my girlfriend and I carry 20 lenses around… we film constantly. Hoping to work on the [track]“Bombay Bump” music video there or in Morocco. I sampled an Indian record, fused it with some 1920’s New Orleans sound.
Do it back home. You met Tara, her dad made Bandit Queen. She can probably help with the filming.
Yeah, hit up Mumbai streets with some bboys like your “Dirty Money” video!
Pretty Lights will be performing at Spiro 2015 and Vh1 Arcade. You can buy the tickets here. Event details listed below:
April 3rd – I-Kandy, Delhi, starting at 6:00pm April 4th – Mehboob Studios, Mumbai, starting at 2:00pm April 5th – BlueFROG, Pune, starting at 6:00pm
Akshai Sarin is a creative entrepreneur and music producer based in Bengaluru.
]]>0Sanaya Ardeshirhttp://rollinstoneindia.comhttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=525232015-03-26T05:19:50Z2015-03-26T05:19:50ZSanaya Ardeshir of Sandunes on the Bengaluru-based electro trip hop group Sulk Station's vocalist and keyboardist
My first impressions of Tanvi Rao were formed when I caught her performance in Bonobo, Bombay as part of Sulk Station. The duo played a late afternoon set and I remember being impressed watching how the performance drew people inside and into a cosy huddle on the ground in front of the stage. It was a hot afternoon being the middle of Bombay summer and the air was still inside, but no one seemed to mind. When she began speaking – I remember thinking, ‘Wow, how real!’ Her communication with the audience was one coming from a place of no pretence. She admitted that she had nerves, and that she was happy to be there – and it was particularly refreshing and also rather endearing to witness her performance on vocals and keys. Since then, I’ve had the opportunity to perform alongside Sulk Station on several occasions and learnt more about their style and approach. I’ve watched Tanvi collaborate with other musicians and even dancers, and always felt engaged by her performances by the virtue of her ability to be and project true self on stage and off — something that can be quite a challenge in the world of performing arts, and she does a damn good job of it! Big up, Tanvi!
]]>0Anurag Tagathttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=527832015-03-25T15:52:23Z2015-03-25T13:28:14ZDirector Dibakar Banerjee roped in artists such as alt punk band BLEK, gypsy/psych rock act Peter Cat Recording Co. and electro-swing duo Madboy/Mink for the OST of his new film
Late at night, returning from a mixing session of his new film Detective Byomkesh Bakshy, Mumbai-based director Dibakar Banerjee tells us that he’s actually trying to eliminate music from his films. Says Banerjee, “I’m trying to eliminate music from my films and at the same time, I’m really excited by the use of music in my film. Try and make sense of that.” We’ve heard this one before. Filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma attempted to achieve the same goal a couple of years ago.
Dibakar Banerjee. Photo: Courtesy Of Banerjee
Except that Banerjee, who has directed critically-acclaimed films such as Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!, Shanghai and Love Sex aur Dhokha, has tapped into India’s alternative music scene for the soundtrack to Byomkesh Bakshy, a period film that follows the famed Bengali detective in Kolkata in the 1940s. Bakshi’s character was created by Bengali writer Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay, whose stories appeared between 1932 and 1970. Says Banerjee of his treatment of the film, “We were treating the past as present. The kind of music that I listen to today was a way of etching out the mood of the film because I was doing a mix of what I am today and what life was like in Calcutta in 1943.” This certainly aligns itself with the idea of another literary film adaptation, 2013’s The Great Gatsby, whose soundtrack, helmed by rapper-producer Jay-Z, reimagined songs along with a few new tracks.
Early in 2014, Banerjee and his production team set out to find artists whose music would fit into the story of the film. After shortlisting about 200 songs from non-Bollywood artists across the country, the team began whittling the list down to a handful of songs and artists, which now includes Mumbai electro-swing duo Madboy/Mink [“Calcutta Kiss”], Delhi psychedelic rockers Peter Cat Recording Co. [“Jaanam”], nu-metallers Joint Family [“Life’s A Bitch”], Mumbai alt punk act BLEK [“Byomkesh In Love”], Bengaluru electronic music duo mode.AKA [“Chase in Chinatown”] and more. From the seven tracks on the OST, four tracks are remakes of previously written material – PCRC’s “Pariquel,” off their 2011 debut album Sinema, now has Hindi lyrics by frontman Suryakant Sawhney, BLEK’s 2012 song “Fog + Strobe” includes thumri vocals by playback singer Usri Banerjee, Madboy/Mink’s “Taste Your Kiss” includes verses in Hindi from vocalist Saba Azad and Joint Family’s “Life’s A Bitch,” stays more or less true to its original 2007 version from their album Hot Box. Says Banerjee, “I was thinking of a soundtrack that was background music, but slowly I realized that the background music for this film will have to be songs which stand on their own, which are not really dictated by what the film shows. They are dictated by their own emotion. They come into the film and give it a new dimension.”
PCRC bassist Rohan Kulshreshtha, guitarist/keyboardist Anindya Shanker and frontman Suryakan Sawhney at the band’s jampad (Photo: Asif Khan)
Newer tracks include “Yang Guang Lives,” a dark theme for the antagonist from the film composed by Ashhar Farooqui [from Delhi electronic music group Teddy Boy Kill], drummer Sahil Mendiratta and guitarist Punit Bhatt, who are part of the group IJA [which translates into ‘mother’ in the language Kumaoni, Farooqui tells us]. This was one of the group’s first compositions, commissioned by Banerjee for the film, ever since they got together in August 2014. Says Farooqui, “It wasn’t so difficult to tap on the nerve of what he [Banerjee] wanted. He gave us a brief and it was pretty visual for us to work with.” IJA, who have just released more new material with four-track EP VitAmin Sex, says it was different compared to any other regular commercial music work. Says Farooqui, “Dibakar made it clear that he didn’t want to interfere.” Banerjee is full of praise for Farooqui and IJA, “It was amazing because that guy can conjure up sounds which hit your bones. Ashhar is a guy who is absolutely on the cutting edge of music.”
BLEK: Jared Creado, Rishi Bradoo and Linford D’Souza. Photo: Gourav Roy
Even Madboy/Mink’s Imaad Shah and Saba Azad, along with PCRC and BLEK agree that Banerjee was never too stubborn like most Bollywood music directors, choosing suggestions over orders. Says BLEK frontman Rishi Bradoo, “Dibakar’s films have been fantastic, so I wasn’t as sceptical [about composing music for a Bollywood film] as I would have been if it was someone else.” The band sat down with Banerjee, who showed them scenes from the film that required a background score, which became “Byomkesh In Love.” Says Bradoo, “Dibakar was very clear that we don’t drift away from our sound. It’s still got a very gritty, synth-pop, modern sound to it.” Adds Madboy/Mink’s Imaad Shah, “It’s great to find a place where our sound can work.” Adds vocalist Saba Azad, “Bollywood has a big reach, so it’s a good medium for us.”
Madboy/Mink. Photo Credit: Shannon Mikhail Lobo
Just as BLEK added a thumri verse, Madboy/Mink roped in Shirish Malhotra on horns and clarinet to replace their sampled sections with live recordings. Shah says changing the title and the main chorus line from “Taste Your Kiss” to “Calcutta Kiss” was a bit jarring at first, “but it makes sense now.” PCRC vocalist-guitarist Suryakant Sawhney too says they didn’t change much apart from writing Hindi lyrics for “Jaanam,” but they did have to re-record the entire song since they’d lost their track data files. Says Sawhney, “It was easy transcribing the lyrics into Hindi for the song. We even recorded a few other parts for the score. We had clips Dibakar had sent us from the film and thought, ‘Let’s just turn it on and jam.’”
For mode.AKA, the thrill of being a part of Detective Byomkesh Bakshy arrived early when they learnt that the movie trailer, which received over two million views on YouTube, featured their music. Says mode.AKA bassist Sandeep Madhavan, “I was expecting a backlash from the Bollywood crowd, but it seems to be working. It’s a good time for all involved. I think it’s going to do wonders.” While BLEK says they’ll take up another song for a film if “it’s in line with what we’re doing as a band.” Madboy/Mink say they are already working on similar projects with other filmmakers, along with an upcoming EP. Banerjee, however, says the unpredictability of the project is what brought about a unique collection of songs – from the metal of “Life’s A Bitch” to the swing of “Calcutta Kiss.” Says Banerjee, “I don’t want to plan anything. Certain things come out when you’re getting into a place where you don’t know shit. But instead of falling back on copying something or doing the expected, you try and figure your way out of that. That only comes if you don’t plan too much.”
Listen to the soundtrack to Detective Byomkesh Bakshy! here
]]>0Rolling Stone Indiahttp://verfilmesonlinehd.orghttp://rollingstoneindia.com/?p=527742015-03-26T04:48:11Z2015-03-25T07:54:18ZDJ Ritesh D'Souza and Los Angeles-based classical pianist and vocalist Tara Mae to perform together as B.R.E.E.D. for The Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival this year
Future bass project B.R.E.E.D. featuring DJ Ritesh D’Souza (left) and Tara Mae. Photo: Courtesy the artist
Originally from Mumbai, DJ Ritesh D’Souza aka bass producer B.R.E.E.D. moved to Los Angeles in early 2013 to focus on pushing his sound internationally, and released his debut Binate, which charted Beatport and iTunes in 2014. Last night, B.R.E.E.D. announced on his Facebook page that he has been booked to play at the annual Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival in California this year. B.R.E.E.D. will perform at the Do Lab Stage with LA-based classically trained pianist and vocalist Tara Mae, with whom he has been working with since the release of Binate. D’Souza wrote on his Facebook wall: “Believe in yourself, work super hard and dream big! And it may come true. Super humbled and stoked right now. Cant wait to slay it at Coachella at the Do Lab Stage. Big love to you all for the support so far.”
The Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival will be held over two weekends starting April 10th and is being headlined by the likes of veteran rockers AC/DC, blues rocker Jack White and American rapper Drake.
B.R.E.E.D. will tour with his new future bass project with Mae in India following his Coachella appearance.