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Bengaluru Outfit Fakeer And the Arc Deliver A Full-Blown Experimental Debut EP ‘Ikigai’

The three-track record is filled with jazz, hip-hop and psychedelic sounds

David Britto Jun 25, 2020

Bengaluru jazz-hop outfit Fakeer And the Arc. Photo: Shubham Bhardwaj

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The seeds for Fakeer And the Arc were sowed at Chennai’s Swarnabhoomi Academy of Music when vocalist Oran “Fakeer” Brahma, guitarist Aniket Roy Chowdhury and drummer Shubham Bhardwaj met while they were completing their diploma in Music Performance. However, it was only earlier this year that they formed their jazz-hop outfit, roping in bassist Lalsang Phaipi to complete the lineup.

The band is now out with their debut three-track experimental EP Ikigai. Brahma says, “Aniket and I started working on a few songs in late 2019 which later translated into the EP.” According to the vocalist, the songs that made it to the record were the ones the group “connected the most to.” Brahma adds, “They also reflected the state of mind we were in at the time.”

Ikigai — reminiscent of material released by American multi-instrumentalist Anderson .Paak — opens with the transcending “Burn” which talks about the inevitable end of “love and emotions.” Brahma says, “It is also an honest look into one’s own shortcomings and philosophical uncertainty.” The band picks up the pace on “Feel the Fire” with funky guitar parts and Brahma’s effervescent vocals. “The lyrics celebrate the feeling of losing everything, which therefore frees the mind and makes one feel invincible,” the vocalist says. The EP closes with “Sandman” which is the band’s take on the jazz standard “Mr. Sandman.” Here Brahma’s dreamy vocals flow over elegant instrumentation. The frontman says, “The sugary melodies and groovy flows counterpoint the darker themes that the lyrics touch upon such as substance abuse, depression, loneliness and coping with reality.”

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The EP was recorded at Bengaluru’s Astral Studios and mixed by Bhardwaj. The songs were then mastered at Mumbai’s Christie Records by Keenan Thomas and Nakul Aggarwal. Next, Fakeer And the Arc are working on a new single as well as a follow-up EP. “We are trying to keep the vibe alive and continue working on the second EP,” says Brahma.

Stream ‘Ikigai’ on Spotify below:

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