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Hear ruhdabeh’s Emotional Debut EP ‘of dissonance and peace’

The Mumbai artist recorded, produced and mixed the entire record herself at her home setup

David Britto Feb 23, 2022

Mumbai-based singer-songwriter ruhdabeh. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

From being part of choirs at an early age to writing her own songs by the time she turned 12, and even teaching herself the piano, guitar and ukulele, Mumbai-based singer-songwriter ruhdabeh has mustered up a wealth of experience in music over the years. “Singing has always been at the forefront of my musical journey,” she says.

When she had a passing thought about releasing her music last year, the musician at the time didn’t think much of it. However, she says, “In February 2021, my brother told me a year from then I should release some music and I agreed.” That thought has now turned into a full-fledged debut six-track EP entitled of dissonance and peace, which was released earlier this week.

According to the singer-songwriter, “The EP consists of some of the songs that I have written over the last three years that are probably the most dear to me and perfectly encapsulate who I am as an artist.”

The emotive record opens with the hopeful lead single “we see rainbows” (which came out earlier this month) and sets the tone for the rest of the EP. Next, we’re treated to the jazz ballad “feels like eternity” which is about “looking up at the moon and wondering whether the person on your mind is looking up at it too.”

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On the indie-pop offering “frangipani rings” ruhdabeh “describes the feeling of wanting to know how a certain experience shared with someone plays out in their head” while on the melancholic folk track “somehow” she sings about “two people who clearly want to be together but it feels like the odds are always stacked against them.” On the penultimate R&B/soul song “of love,” the singer-songwriter explains that the track is about a “lack of love.” The record closes with the dreamy “i’ll be fine,” which according to the artist talks of “accepting your desolate fate and letting go of your worries.”

Throughout the EP, there’s a certain sense of nostalgia with the music while ruhdabeh’s infectious vocals and mature lyrics sit perfectly on a bed of wistful soundscapes and lush instrumentation. She says, “of dissonance and peace is a journey through hope, longing, loving, suffering, accepting fate and finally letting go.”

The artist wanted the EP to be her own personal project and decided on recording, producing, mixing and mastering the record all by herself at her home studio. “I also found that by being the sole contributor to every aspect of the songs from start to finish, I have learned a lot more about each step of the process, enhancing my skills in each aspect.”

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To further explain to listeners about her music, ruhdabeh plans on posting videos on her YouTube channel where she will showcase an in-depth analysis of the songs on the EP explaining the lyrics as well as her process of making the record. “I have also invited all budding dancers, writers, poets, visual artists of all kinds to interpret my songs in their own art forms,” she says. The singer adds, “Since my songs have very strong visuals in their lyrics and since I have great respect and admiration for artists and creators of all kinds, I thought this would be a great way to bring all of these factors together.”

While working on of dissonance and peace ruhdabeh also managed to squeeze in a few writing sessions of newer material. The singer-songwriter informs us that prep for the next batch of songs has already begun. “Nothing is set in stone yet, but there could be new music coming later this year itself.”

Stream of ‘dissonance and peace’ on Spotify below and on other platforms.

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