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Jayesh Malani Exhibits Meditative Audio and Visual Experience With ‘Full/Circle’ EP

The Mumbai-based artist took a little over three years to put the project together

David Britto May 06, 2021

Mumbai-based multi-instrumentalist and filmmaker Jayesh Malani. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

Bhopal-born multi-instrumentalist and filmmaker Jayesh Malani spent plenty of time on the move while growing up. Having had layoffs in Raipur, Kolkata, Pune and now currently based in Mumbai, it’s fair to say that the artist is well-traveled. Through his moves, Malani picked up the guitar in Pune while in school and was eventually drawn to filmmaking when pursuing his Bachelor of Mass Media in Mumbai. He says, “Even though the course (BMM) was quite diverse, that’s what I chose to pick out of it.”

While in Mumbai, Malani played with various bands and even attended the city-based True School of Music for two years where he enrolled for a course in Guitar and Production. Last year, the musician released his debut single “Tezeta” and is now out with his debut five-track EP Full/Circle.

What makes Full/Circle a unique experience is that Malani has presented it in an aural and visual fashion. He says, “Full/Circle is composed as one long 13-minute piece with five movements.” Even though the project took him a good three years to create, the musician tells us that it’s a document of eight years of his life. “[It] talks about growth, time, change, being at war with yourself, the importance of mental health and hints at ways of dealing with adversity,” says Malani.

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The instrumental tracks on the record lean towards meditative and rustic soundscapes, acoustic elements as well as strains of saxophone too. The somber opening song “When We Were Young” is about “a journey that finds beginnings in a sheltered naivety” before we hear the plaintive “Baby Steps” which Malani explains coveys the feeling of finding one’s feet. The moody “A Beautiful Night to Die” explores themes of not belonging whereas the melancholic “Amor Fati” is about accepting fate. The record closes with the hypnotic title track, Malani says, “It is a rhetorical summation for the end of one journey and the start of another.”

The beautiful and imaginative film put together to complement the songs has been shot by cinematographers Prajwal Shivanna, Mark Tipple, Maumoon Lowe, Viraj D and Malani who also directed and edited it. “It was just supposed to be an aural journey until the final masters arrived and I started making little promos for its release. They really seemed to have a life of their own and I just thought of trying to extend a trailer into a whole part, one at a time,” says Malani. According to the artist, the film can also be seen as a painting in which “the feeling” is the most important part. The artist adds, “The footage is a mix of multiple travels throughout the years, all around India.”

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After completing quite a mammoth artistic project, one would think Malani would opt for a break, however, the musician and filmmaker is already cracking on with his next album. In the works are also singles for later this year. He says, “It’s a beautiful feeling to start a clean slate again after this long.” Malani is also working on a world music album with drummer/composer Bhaarat Chandore. “We recorded it in a small village in Madhya Pradesh called Chicli in Nimaar earlier this year. Absolute party that thing,” he says.

Watch and hear ‘Full/Circle’ below: