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Ganesh Talkies Begin Work On Second EP

The Kolkata pop rock band rope in Miti and Neel Adhikari as producers for their next release

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Shamik Bag Oct 30, 2013
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Bassist Roheet Mukherjee. Photo: Sourya Sen/Ronit Biswas

Bassist Roheet Mukherjee. Photo: Sourya Sen/Ronit Biswas

In the south Kolkata studio where they are recording their second EP, the Ganesh Talkies folks are talking. This is no ordinary in-studio, between-takes chitchat or joking around, but a subject that goes pat down to the sound foundations of the band ”” is it disco, pop-rock, dance, Bappi Lahiri from Eighties Bollywood or Jatin Lalit from a little later? 

Finally, vocalist Suyasha Sengupta and bassist Roheet Mukherjee gel around the thought that dance music is a good enough cover for the band. So be it: Ganesh Talkies is dance music, as long as it includes their influences in rock, pop, reggae, robust riffs and Lahiri-inspired keyboard strings. “Bappi Lahiri is part of our DNA,” admits Sengupta. Mukherjee volunteers to show a phonecam shot he had secretly taken of himself with the Bollywood music director.

Since the band came up in 2011, Ganesh Talkies has occupied the happy wedge between music that is brooding and overtly brainy or music that is loud and brawny.  In silver and gold glossy costumes that elicit the yet-to-be-made movie on actor Govinda traveling on the space shuttle Jhatka-Matka, the band had let it cheerfully roll, performing merry music as [and for] shiny happy gangs of listeners. In two years, and since the launch of their first EP, the quirkily-titled Three-Tier, Non AC, the band has poked at the fledging Indian indie music scene with a sound, which by Mukherjee’s own admission, is now coming of age.

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At the studio, what comes through is the chirpiness characteristic in their compositions. Being produced by the venerable Miti Adhikari along with cousin brother Neel, who is the frontman of Neel and the Lightbulbs and an integral part of the Kolkata experimental band Gandu Circus, there is a distinct shift from Ganesh Talkies’ debut effort. This attempt seems to aim at a more processed sound with many more layers and textures to the music and multi-part vocal harmonies. The band spends a long time trying to find the right stress on words and huddle over the most effective use of brass elements in the music.

Sandipan Parial at the drumkit. Photo: Sourya Sen/Ronit Biswas

Sambit Chatterjee at the drumkit. Photo: Sourya Sen/Ronit Biswas

If “Item Song” was the firestarter in Three Tier, tracks like “Dancing, Dancing,” with its nananana chorus filler, energetic rolls by drummer Sambit Chatterjee and a bitch of a bass line, and “Disco Days,” with an infectious vibe, in which Sengupta tries out a dehati-style twang to her singing, are likely to be the next concert rabble-rousers. “Wonder Woman,” with a trademark harmonium-toned keyboard parts by Nabarun Bose has a preppy pop Gwen Stefani-aligned feel to it, while “Style” is rounded off by the heady percussive energy of the dhaak.  

It is all indicative of a bounce in their music that befits their age: a little calculation throws up the average age of the band ”” 24 years. There are more changes in store. After having hired their bling-bling, silver-shining dresses from a local Tollywood film industry costume provider, the band is about to get into a new set of clothes ”” this time by a designer of their choice. 

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