Artists To Watch Out For: The Uncertainty Principle
Delhi prog rock band gear up for debut album this year
The Delhi rockers are one of the five emerging bands to have made it to our list.
WHO: In September 2011 ”” aÂ year after founding membersÂ and guitarists Abhishek RajanÂ and Nishant Kurup got together in school ”“ Delhi progressiveÂ rock band The Uncertainty PrincipleÂ [TUP] finalized their lineup,Â after finding a committedÂ drummer in the then 18-yearoldÂ Keith Peter. Rajan met PeterÂ in north campus [Delhi University].Â Two years on, they haveÂ not only carved a path out ofÂ their alternative rock roots towardsÂ more prog rock terrains,Â but also won several accoladesÂ along the way for their intelligentÂ yet catchy music. “We wereÂ looking forward to college competitions,Â but after we recordedÂ our songs, we just thought:Â ”˜no more competitions!’” saysÂ drummer Peter.
SOUND: Though their initial daysÂ as a band were influenced by alternativeÂ rock bands such asÂ Creed [they still like to throw inÂ a cover of the band’s song “WhatÂ If?” at shows], every memberÂ shares a common liking for progÂ rock legends such as Karnivool,Â Porcupine Tree, Tool, and DreamÂ Theater guitar virtuoso John Petrucci’sÂ solo work. TUP runs theÂ risk of sounding too close to theirÂ influences at times but for theirÂ alt rock leanings. “The idea is toÂ make catchy music. It’s not aboutÂ time signatures and technicalÂ music,” says vocalist RaghavÂ Meattle. Rhythm guitarist NishantÂ Kurup adds, “It’s progressiveÂ rock, but it’s free flowing.”Â Adds Peter,“The way we makeÂ music, the audience should go:Â ”˜Oh shit!’ or whatever.”
BIG BREAK: Their first ever win at IIT Delhi’s Blitzkrieg competition in October 2011 caught theÂ attention of judges Nikhil MalikÂ [from Delhi alt rock band CyanideÂ and Half Step Down] andÂ Srijan Mahajan [drummer ofÂ Parikrama, Half Step Down andÂ Cyanide], who invited them toÂ record at their studio. Their topÂ hits such as “Forever,” “ThroughÂ My Eyes” and “The Question”Â were recorded at Malik andÂ Mahajan’s Studio Fuzz.
WORK AND PLAY: All five membersÂ study at Delhi University,Â with the exception of bassistÂ Siddharth Rajan, who has a dayÂ job at a supermarket. “Most ofÂ our [the band’s] work happensÂ on the weekend, so it’s cool. It’sÂ a bit hectic but not exhausting,”Â says Rajan, the older brother ofÂ guitarist Abhishek.
ON THE CARDS: TUP have setÂ their sights on a full-length releaseÂ next year. They’re not sureÂ of an exact date because theyÂ are waiting on Studio Fuzz toÂ upgrade facilities for recordingÂ live drums. “It’s really importantÂ to me [to record live drums], becauseÂ some of the programmedÂ stuff on our earlier songs stillÂ sounds modulated. The recordingÂ has to sound pro,” says Peter.Â Lead guitarist Abhishek wantsÂ “eight or nine songs” to be theirÂ benchmark for the album, includingÂ newer tracks such asÂ “The Orb” and “Stigma.”Â
SPIN THIS: TUP’s seven-minuteÂ song “The Question” withÂ its heavy crescendos, double bass drums and Meattle’s refrain “Why are we here?” that has something new to say to you every time you hear it.