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New Music: Monsoonsiren

Bengaluru-based electronica producer/vocalist Nathan Menon on his debut EP

Jessica Kilbane Jul 14, 2014


Nathan Menon, who releases music under the alias Monsoonsiren, is not an easy artist to pin down. After releasing his debut self-titled EP, a collaboration with Melbourne-based electronica producer Tom Day in 2013, Menon disappeared from the spotlight ”“ only to resurface every other month with a surprise single in a style he calls “cinematic funeral music.” Says the 20-year-old Bengaluru-based artist, “A lot of books and films influenced my music. I hate the present time, times as they are now. So I look at life through this black and white cinematic filter.”

Day and Menon spent a year working on the five-track EP, an effort which they coordinated entirely online. Says Menon, “I’ve never met him. I’d heard “Going Home” and thought, ”˜I’d love to lay my vocals on this.’ But it was all on the internet, we’d keep sending each other stems back and forth.”  A combination of soft rhythms, drifting piano lines and Menon’s falsetto create a sound that is intimate, structured to underline the lyrical matter. Adds the vocalist, “I don’t think anyone understands that the theme is incredibly depressing. It’s pretty much focuses on what I was going through at the time, the EP was the outcome of that. I don’t like talking about my music because it’s very personal, I want my music to talk for me.” 

Menon’s lyrics dwell on love and loneliness, drawing inspiration from art film classics such as Throw Away Your Books And Rally In The Streets, The Lovers and Elevator To The Gallows. Much like his music, the artist is a study in solitude. A musical hermit - he spends most of his time alone, obsessively working on his music and hanging out with his pet cat, Maki. Adds Menon, “She’s my best friend and we talk to each other all the fucking time.”

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The artist’s upcoming work includes crafting the background score for a documentary on the occult. The film, still in its early stages, explores emotions and otherworldly elements. Says the producer, “The occult has always interested me on a very superficial level. I don’t do drugs, but this film was just very psychedelic. Esoteric but very visually provocative, simple but beautiful.” Menon is also working on a nine-track LP, which is due later this year. The as yet untitled release will feature a host of international collaborations, including a single with Seattle-based electronica duo Odesza. Says Menon, speaking about the album, “It’s a lot happier.”

Stream Tom Day & Monsoonsiren’s “Elegiac”: