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See Pratika’s Angsty Video for Debut Single ‘Burn’

The track has been produced by Calm, one half of New Delhi hip-hop duo Seedhe Maut

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David Britto Apr 09, 2020

Mumbai musician Pratika. Photo: Samarth Shirke

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If you’ve been following India’s independent music scene closely for the last decade, the name Pratika Prabhune would probably ring a lot of bells. The Mumbai-based multi-talented artist has been an active participant in the scene, from handling bass and vocal duties for the erstwhile metal band Chronic Phobia to volunteering at gigs and music festivals such as Great Indian Rock, BIG 69, Control Alt Delete and Vh1 Supersonic among others. She’s also worked at music and event establishments which include Bajaao Entertainment, Furtados Music and 4/4 Experiences, and is currently the digital marketing manager at New Delhi independent label Azadi Records. With a wealth of experience in the music scene under her belt, Prabhune is now out with her debut solo single in the shape of the fiery “Burn.”

Ask Prabhune – who also moonlights under her hip-hop moniker MC PEP – what took her so long to release music and she says, “I felt at the time I should contribute a little to the metal scene I loved so much. Later I just got busy, and until a year back I was just lazy. I couldn’t wrap my mind around making my own music.” The artist explains that it was only recently when she decided to kick things off and experiment which has led to her “really enjoying” the experience.

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On “Burn” – produced by New Delhi hip-hop duo Seedhe Maut’s Calm – there is musical diversity. We hear Prabhune spitting bars, even showing off her vocal prowess and artistic vulnerability to a crunchy groove. “The minute I heard the beat when Calm visited the Azadi Records office, I was like, ‘I could do something with this.’” Inspired by Indian hip-hop artists and metal bands writing songs leaning towards the current political climate in India, Prabhune says, “The lyrical expression is just what many of us feel right now.” She adds, “I’m not one to incessantly follow politics, but you can’t avoid the loud voices at 9 pm on TV, nor can you ignore things affecting your life directly.” According to Prabhune, she feels that the ideologies between both hip-hop and metal are very similar and that both genres “meet” in the middle.

The song’s accompanying video – shot on an iPhone 6 by sound engineer (and brother) Pritesh – sees the vocalist performing the single atop a building terrace and even in a dark room, wearing a mask while footage of the country’s youth being suppressed, prime time news debates, Indian daily life and police brutality flash across the screen. She says, “Years of watching music videos gave me the editing sense. The mask was just a nice prop to use and an essential in the COVID-19 crisis, so why not?”

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Vocalist-guitarist Arsh Sharma (who fronts electro-rock act FuzzCulture and is part of New Delhi rock band The Circus) mixed and mastered the track. Prabhune tells us that it was “amazing” working with Calm and jokes that he is “one of the ‘calmest’ guys I’ve ever met.” While in self-quarantine, Prabhune has been keeping busy writing science fiction stories, learning how to use music software Logic Pro X, sharpening her video editing skills on Premiere Pro and has even been cooking. “I am also doing a certificate course in Archaeoastronomy online,” she says. Next, Prabhune has more music coming out in the future. Collaborations with guitarist Reinhardt Dias of Mumbai rockers Blakc and hip-hop artist Tienas are also on the cards.

Watch the video for “Burn” below:

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