Randolph Correia Experiments with House and Techno Music as Blitch, Releases New Func EP ‘666’
The Mumbai-based guitarist and producer dropped a total of five new records last week
When we get on a call to speak to Mumbai-based guitarist and producer Randolph Correia, he’s back in the room at his parents’ place, where he recorded the first couple records for electro-rock outfit Pentagram, initial Func albums as well as the early material for his pop electronic duo Shaa’ir and Func. He says, “I’m with mum and dad so it’s a nice atmosphere spending time with folks because it’s getting pretty intense [with the pandemic].” While the seasoned artist surprised us last year by dropping an EP and two albums under the moniker Girls On Canvas, last week Correia went ahead and repeated himself by releasing new music, however, this time as the alias Blitch.
One of the reasons the musician sunk his teeth into churning out an exorbitant amount of material was to combat the negativity surrounding us at the moment. “That’s all I’ve been doing to stay positive,” he says.
As Correia explained to us last year that he wanted to separate the music he makes under his well-known electronic stage name Func, he’s now reserved that outlet to focus mainly as a producer. “Any kind of sound that I started Func with, I’m not messing around with that,” says the artist. With Blitch, Correia has been able to expand his sonic palate and delved into the world of house and techno with 35 tracks spread across four albums titled Waves, FUKT, Demon Inside and Pharm House. While the music was a fresh experience for him, Correia also experimented with a technique on digital audio workstation Ableton. “[I used] this kind of launch function where you can launch clips in a different way. Got the sound for Blitch basically from that technique and then started arranging little tunes out of that experiment, because most of these are like live jams,” he says.
According to him, the artwork – designed by Russian-bred and London-based artist Dragol9999 – is important thematically to the records. The illustrations hark back to the motifs you’d find on metal albums, music that Correia grew up listening to. The musician says, “If you’ve observed a lot of Megadeth album artworks, Napalm Death album artwork, they will always kind of have this little satirical angle to it [with an] over gory subject, they would make it a little more fiction, they would make it a little more fun to see.” He adds, “I think this is like an anime movie for me, where things are a bit screwed. So I kind of treat it [the records] as a music score for this little fantasy anime that I have in my head.” Correia also explains that the music itself doesn’t necessarily have hooks, drops or breakdowns. It’s more cinematic in nature. “This new technique that I had combining it with these fictitious themes I think is what made it [Blitch] start coming together.”
If four new records as Blitch weren’t enough, Correia also released a new four-track Func EP last week called 666. The new EP serves as a follow-up to the artist’s 2003 debut Func album Dubba. Correia always set out for Func to be a character. He picked the moniker from the word function that he’d spot on keyboards and drum machines. The producer says, “You would always see this little button called func.” He adds, “It’s a tongue-in-cheek little play on funk obviously rhyming with punk and me being a guitar player I liked making sense of it relating to funk music. Function for me at that point meant to create music or a story to tell in relation to the world around.”
Correia revisited that early Func period while putting his back catalog up for streaming and came across the unreleased material that would eventually become 666. Sonically the music matched what he had started with Func almost two decades ago and he says, “It was also making sense now as an extension of that time in that period, and also kind of like a refresher for me just having finished these four Blitch albums.”
With Func, Girls On Canvas and even Blitch, Correia isn’t seen self-promoting the projects across his social media to let people know that the music is out. Is that something he’d like to change? He says, “I’m kind of shy, to be honest.” Correia adds, “The thing is with Pentagram and Shaa’ir and Func I’ve been a bit spoilt by having the best managers, best sound and all of that stuff. So this being personal is like my other side and it’s my holiday away from that stuff.” Correia is also quick to say that none of these projects are “side projects” and that they are definite extensions to his experimentations and journey as an artist. The material has also allowed Correia to bag DJ gigs and live electronica sets. For him, it draws back to discovery. “When I discover some artist that no one knows or talks about, it’s a great joy.”
As for Correia the guitar player, he assures us that nothing beats the feeling of being up on stage playing his instrument blasting through a Marshall amp. “I’ve DJ’ed to thousands of people also, but it doesn’t cut it.”
Early morning cycling, spending less time on his phone and the internet and trying to be fit are some of Correia’s remedies during the current pandemic to keep his mental health in good shape. Looking ahead, Correia tells us that he’s excited to play music with Pentagram when things get better but as of now he’s focused on Blitch, possibly two more Girls On Canvas records later this year as well as his own art, illustrations and paintings. “I’m really looking forward to getting back to it,” he says.