New Music: From Virtuosic Electro-Fusion to Chennai Experimental Rock and More
This month, we round up the latest from rapper MC Heam, Bengaluru space rock band The Sahej Project, Pune blues band Triple Shuffle and more
“Bahut Soft” by MC Heam
In true hip-hop fashion, MC Heam comes out all guns blazing right from the title of his new song “Bahut Soft.” A take on the oft-uttered slang of “Bohot Hard,” Heam steadies his aim at pretentious rappers who put on a badass façade for the sake of clout. In the video directed by filmmaker Dezvyn Tinwalla, the rapper is seen cooking in the kitchen, but later turns the song on its head by going full on satirical and closing with a monologue on how rappers should be rooted in reality.
Namo by Namo Fusion
Before you jump in and point out how this two-syllable word “Namo” has become synonymous with Indian politics, it’s best to clarify that Namo Fusion take their name from the Sanskrit term for bowing down with respect. Comprising violinist Dr. Narayan Raman and guitarist Sarosh Izedyar, the album also features I.D. Rao on saxophone and clarinet, plus bassist Vaibhav Jadhav. The 30 year friendship between Raman and Izedyar results in moody, half-cinematic yet somewhat groovy, mystic fusion, heard on songs like “Namo,” “Freedom” and upbeat folk fusion (“Happy Kalimba”), plus searing jazz fusion (“Relay Express”).
Reminiscence of a Lost Canvas by The Sahej Project
Bengaluru space rock band The Sahej Project recently launched their debut album Reminiscence of a Lost Canvas. At nine tracks, it’s clearly the result of a few years of polishing their sound into a prog-informed, post-rock mélange, best heard on the closing track “Pale Blue Dot.” Prior to that, songs like “While I Wander” are bittersweet, while “Parachute” is a slow piano-based stargazing rock song. Along the way, the band dives into sprawling territories on “Mirrors” and “Noah,” while offering sing-along, straightforward rock on “Heyio” and “Home.”
“Immunity” by Phet
Chennai-based, Bengaluru-bred Muneeb Peeran aka Phet channels stoner, psychedelic rock and post-rock inspired by shamanic initiations, samsara cycles, and mystic mythologies. For more than 17 weeks, there’s been new Phet material up weekly on his Bandcamp and Spotify, one that ranges from shattering stoner metal to post-rock. Phet’s latest release “Immunity” veers towards heavier sonic terrain, digging into an incendiary groove. Albeit a bit lo-fi, “Immunity” is a perfect piece of the growing puzzle that Phet is completing each week.
“Call Out to Me” by The Akanksha & Digvijay Project
Guwahati-bred Digvijay Goswami and Lucknow-origin Akanksha Sethi met in college in Bengaluru and decided to form a duo, but called time when they had to move out for professional commitments, only to reconnect in Gurugram. Call it providence or just a long-winded route to keeping the music going, the Akanksha & Digvijay Project have released their debut song “Call Out to Me,” a gentle acoustic pop track about fighting to keep love alive.
Set Me Free EP by Triple Shuffle
Pune-based blues band Triple Shuffle are young folks with a love for mostly old-school blues. We’re sure there’s a little bit of John Mayer in there, but their debut EP Set Me Free (not necessarily a reference to Shillong blues band Soulmate’s song of the same name) leans on hues of B.B. King, Eric Clapton and Stevie Ray Vaughan. The three-track EP features frontman Ritvik Nagarkar, bassist Abhinav Kumar, keyboardist Zion Mathew and drummer Aniket Kate belting out feel-good, foot-tapping blues rock.