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Stream The Title Track From The Family Cheese’s Debut EP

Mumbai jam band plans three-city launch tour this month, will release a second EP later this year

Rolling Stone India
Rolling Stone India Aug 27, 2013
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The Family Cheese

The Family Cheese

If there’s one thing you know for sure after watching jam band The Family Cheese perform, it is that the trio love their breakfast and their cheese. Lead guitarist Apurv Isaac, the only non-Parsi in the band (The Family Cheese comprises vocalist and drummer Yohan Marshall and bassist Homi Rustumji) is probably an anomaly among them. “When I joined the band, I did not like cheese but these guys slowly made me start liking it. But that’s a different story,” says Isaac. The guitarist is also the one to debunk the band’s emphatic use of the catchphrase ”˜We are The Family Cheese and we love that breakfast’ [you will hear the line being chanted by one of the band members after every song]: “We usually wake up around 3pm, so we aren’t really breakfast eaters,” he adds.

The three musicians in the band, who shifted base from Chennai to Mumbai last year, have had their plates full, playing shows across colleges in India since they wrapped up their course at the Swarnabhoomi Academy of Music earlier this year. At gigs, they are known to bring a mix of gimmickry (Issac is known for playing a solo with his guitar slung over his back) and talent to stage. They’ve performed over eight shows at Blue Frog, Mumbai since last year and it’s but natural that they chose the popular music club to launch their EP. “It’s pretty much our regular venue to perform in Bombay,” says Isaac, who offers that the band picked the EP launch date to exactly coincide with the day they played their first gig at Blue Frog Mumbai a year ago.

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Their debut EP, titled Stories of the places you’ve never been, has been a work in progress since the time that the three met in music school in 2011 and gig regulars are sure to have heard all the four tracks that make up the record. “We got down to recording it last year and then we took a long break before its mixing because we wanted to come back and see what it sounds like,” adds the guitarist. During this break, Rustumji and Isaac revisited their music school and returned with newer influences. “A lot of learning happened and we added that to the album. It’s become more musical now and the songs have matured a lot since we started work on them,” adds Isaac, who goes by the nickname Lala, and even has an instrumental song in their debut EP dedicated to his moniker.

The Family Cheese plans to release the first EP [comprising four tracks] this week and will release another EP [comprising five songs] in a couple of months. While the first EP sees the three members of the experimental jam band incorporate complex Carnatic rhythm structures, jazz and  psychedelic rock, the second edition may feature guest artists. “What we are looking for is this power trio sound, which is not happening in India. There’s always another guitar player or keys player but we are looking at a band with three people who have a big sound,” says Isaac about following the guitar, bass and drums format that bands like Canadian prog rock vets Rush and Brit supergroup Cream, popularized. 

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The two EPs, which were recorded at Cotton Press Studio and partly at Arbitrandom  Studio, may also eventually be released as a full-length album. “We didn’t want to rush it. There’s a lot happening. It’s got everything from pop rock, Carnatic fusion to electronic ambient music. We have been travelling a lot for gigs so we haven’t had time to just sit with our music,” says Isaac, “Also once the buzz of the first EP fades, we will extend it once again when we launch our second EP.”

 Stream the title song from Stories of the places you’ve never been here: 


UPDATE: Stories of the places you’ve never been is now available as a pay-as-you-want download here. 


The Family Cheese EP launch tour:

Blue Frog, Mumbai- August 28th, 2013. Details here. Entry free

Purple Fest, Chennai- August 30th, 2013. Details here. Entry free 

The Shed: Potens Crossfit Centre, Hyderabad ”“ August 31st, 2013 [Off The Record feat. Mad Orange Fireworks, The Upper Basement]. Entry Rs 200. For tickets, click here

More dates to be announced 



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