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Making It Happen: An Interview with Tejas

12 Jun

Tejas has had quite a journey to get where he is now. He grew up in Dubai and moved to India after high school. Not quite fitting in with the academic environment of college, Tejas found his first calling as a Pune-based RJ, through which he got his first taste of the Indian indie music world. He then went on to release a debut EP, Small Victories, in 2014, and followed it up last year with an LP, Make It Happen – which was notable for an interesting set of reasons. First, it featured the same brand of lively, unpretentious music that put his EP on the map. Second, it came with a great design aesthetic – unique yet perfectly in sync with the music. Third, and most interestingly, it was crowdsourced online and received its funding in a matter of hours.

However, Tejas is more than just his music. He founded and manages Kadak Apple Records, an indie music label from Bombay whose roster features a number of rising stars. Another Tejas Menon venture – this one outside music altogether – is Geek Fruit HQ, a platform to discuss and enjoy all things nerdy.

Read on for our long-form interview with Tejas to find out more about his musical style, crowdfunding his first LP, how he came about founding his other ventures, and much more.

Hi Tejas, how are you?

I’m great, thanks. And thank you for doing this!

No problem! We’ve wanted to speak to you for a while now. So let’s jump right in and start from the beginning. What got you into music, when did you get into music, and what were you listening to when you were growing up?

Well, to start with, I was born in India, but we moved to Dubai when I was around 3 months old. I spent the first 18 years of my life there. I had some few Indian influences growing up – stuff from my parents, like cricket and Bollywood, and from going to an Indian school as well. But most of the time, my time was spent watching movies, reading comic books, consuming a weird amalgamation of Bollywood, Eastern influences, and Western influences.

As soon as I was old enough to discern an affinity to music, I started discovering pop music – Michael Jackson’s Dangerous, and so on. I also happened to be a good Elvis impersonator (even now, Elvis is like God to me). My friends were listening to popular music like Bon Jovi and Linkin Park, and I started listening to a few other artists on my own, like Madonna. I was a Backstreet Boys fan – still am, unironically.

Yeah, it’s a very 90s kid thing to be.

Yeah, I was born in ’89 so I’m a through-and-through 90s kid. And then I was a singer in my high school band, drummed for a bit. The first instrument I ever learnt was actually the keys, after my mom bought me a keyboard. But not really a serious approach to music. I finally wrote my first proper song when I was around 18. I got a little more into songwriting after leaving high school and the pressures of the Indian education system behind – I was terrible at academics.

The other thing is, I had a tumultuous childhood – my parents are separated and it was a tough time growing up. It was difficult for me to focus on what I wanted to do in life. The kids in my school went on to study amazing things abroad, but I really didn’t feel that that was for me.

Long story short, I ended up in Pune after high school, living with my cousins. They sort of raised me a second time for the four or five years that I stayed with them. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but they made sure I got a degree at least. So, I went to Wadia College, got a degree in Economics.

But in that time, I did something really important in my life. I went for what seemed to be a casual internship at Radio One. I was there for about three years; learnt a lot from the artists that came in, polishing my communication skills, and so on. I’ve found a lot more stability in a work environment than a schooling environment, to be honest. I loved school as a kid because it was a respite from home, but school ultimately wasn’t for me.

So there I was at 19, an RJ with my own show, and I really felt like the Mayor of Pune (laughs). All this time, I was writing music at home, sharing it with mostly my friends, but it was really for me and me alone. I didn’t see any point of performing live. But that was because I really didn’t know the options out there for indie artists like me.

I eventually found some artists online, musicians like Gowri Jayakumar, and I was amazed that people were putting up their independent music. I was like, “Why am I not doing that, too?” So I started putting up music online, and went for a few shows.

And then – I don’t know if this was just timing or serendipity – the first NH7 Weekender happened and they chose Pune for the venue. I just happened to be the RJ at the radio station promoting the festival. The first thought when I went to check it out was, “Oh my God. I can totally do this. I can have a band.” My second thought was, “This is an amazing feeling, to perform in front of people who wanted to listen to music.” Taking that cue, I started playing more shows around Pune. This was around 2010 or 2011 – I’m actually coming up on my 10th year of playing music now!

So you’re a veteran of the Indian indie music scene, then. (laughs) Who do you play with when you’re on stage or recording the album?

Well, I’ve gone through a number of lineups. Some of my greatest friends have come from music. Warren from Blackstratblues used to play with us; in fact he produced the first album. Aalok from Something Relevant used to play with me back in the day, too. The core lineup of the band right now is [bassist] Adil Karwa and [drummer] Jehangir Jehangir (JJ). Adil plays with a number of bands here including The Colour Compound and the Koniac Net (who just put out an amazing album, by the way), and JJ is also a studio owner now – he owns Island City Studios, which is right now the place to record in Bombay. In fact, the album that we’re working on right now is the three of us working together. I’ve written the songs but we’re basically co-producing it.

And you recorded together as well for this album?

Yeah, all three of us played and produced it together. They’re like my brothers, basically.

Nice. Yeah, we actually interviewed David from the Koniac Net a while ago, so we’re glad to see that they’re finally getting the support and appreciation they deserve.

Man, that’s so true. Nail on head, really. I’ve been a Koniac fan for a while. It’s like the old-school 90s alternative stuff that I really love. And David is an awesome guy, really puts hard work into the Koniac Net. He’s like a true hustler of yore, you know? (laughs)

Yeah, we’ve been fans for a while too, so we’re really glad to see that they finally broke through with the latest record [They Finally Heard Us].

It’s arguably one of my favorite albums of this year so far, you know? And they’re just a guitar-heavy alternative band, but this one is a deeply immersive and emotional album. Something intimate about it.

Yeah. So we know this is somewhat of a cliched question to ask, but as the songwriter of the act, what comes first for you, the music or the words?

So I listened to this Song Explorer podcast with Wilco a while ago, and the front man was like, “I just sing, and words just come out of my mouth. I trust my own instincts and my body enough, that whatever is coming out of me is what’s relevant to what I want to sing out.” Since then, I kind of work along this philosophy. The essence of the themes come out very naturally. The song I did this most for was “Falling Out” from my last record [2018’s Make It Happen]. The melody and the words came out at the same time while I was playing the guitar. Usually the guitar parts come together first.

I used to try and be clever about writing lyrics. I wanted to make funny and interesting rhymes, metaphors here and there, and I thought this was songwriting is: to be cheeky and clever. As I got older, I found it a little disingenuous to simply try to make a rhyme or to make something fit. From my first album [2014’s Small Victories EP] to the second, there’s a big shift in the lyrics, if you notice. It’s a lot more abstract, a little less narrative, a lot more organic and real. I prefer this a lot more to what I used to write like. I try to keep it as fluid and as true as I can.

What was going through your head when you put together the songs on Make It Happen?

Well, my first record was as indie as it gets – arranged in three days, recorded in three days, mixed in four days, and then it was out. There was no room for experimentation, but that was how Warren and I intended for it to be. For Make It Happen, I really wanted a great, sprawling record with big sounds and big ideas. I wanted to be indulgent and create something that I was really proud of.

Two threads across the album are my vocals and the theme (centered on my late 20s). I took every song individually rather than as an entire album together. People may complain that some songs stick out or don’t fit in, but I felt that this was a representation of my entire life. Nobody is just one thing, and I hate being slotted into “Oh, this is a pop record, oh, this is that sort of vibe”, so I liked the idea that it’s really dynamic. I wanted people to feel positive, but also feel the depth and range of things I had to offer. Everything was so important to me, from the design to the track listing, and I’m really proud of what we put out.

But that being said, I’m proud of my first album, too. That’s who I was then. Maybe it’s not true right now, but that’s exactly what I wanted at that point. It’s a snapshot of who I was then.

We’re glad you brought up the design on your album. We really loved the color palette and the visuals on Make It Happen with the little Adventure Time type of cartoons, and so on. How did you come up with the aesthetic? Did you design it yourself?

Tejas: Well, I am a very poor designer, so it wasn’t me (laughs). After my first album, I felt that the design didn’t say that much about me visually. So I went and spoke to Neysa Mendes (@goodslice), who’s been really instrumental in a bunch of albums from the indie scene. She said, “Tejas, you have to close your eyes, and think about what you want people to visualize when they say your name.” After that, I spent a good amount of time thinking about the visuals and imagery that I wanted to project.

I then took the aid of Studio Kohl, and an amazing designer and conceptual artist called Mira Malhotra. I told Mira and the team that I wanted it to be representative of who I am – I love animation, cartoons, bright colors. I literally still watch cartoons and I’m turning 30 this year (laughs). And I love Adventure Time, as you pointed out, with its mythology and bizarreness. I wanted to create this universe of my own, with every track having its own single art, and all those pieces put together form the back art of the album.

We wanted to talk to you about another interesting aspect of the album, which is that you crowdfunded it online, and you raised the money you needed in a matter of hours! Talk us through how that happened, and why you chose that route.

Yeah, it was amazing. I had no idea it was going to happen in literally six hours! My friends put in good amounts, but there were so many folks I didn’t expect. I got Rs. 50,000 from a high school that I hadn’t spoken to in literally ten years. It was an incredible and humbling experience, to be honest.

As for the why. Sometimes, I feel that the independent music scene in India is a rich person’s sport, you know? You need a benefactor’s help, whether it’s your folks or your own savings, and so on. I’m on my own, with some help from friends, so it’s an expensive affair. This helped a lot.

Also, the theme of Make It Happen is basically about taking the right decisions to improve your life. I have been a product of everybody’s goodwill – so thematically, contextually, it made sense to fund the album this way. It got everyone involved, and excited to hear more from me. Turned out great!

The other aspect of this was, I knew I had to work on the marketing and promotion of the album anyway. The music industry right now is set up in such a way that there’s not much money coming in from sales or from streaming. Really, the money is coming from performances – everything you do as a musician is only to promote your gig. Even your album! Think about it that way, and you realize you have to spend a lot of marketing money. I’m from an advertising background, so I get this. It’s not enough to be a talented musician anymore. So this was a unique way to promote the album, too.

Yeah, for sure. Switching gears a bit, we wanted to ask you about your record label, Kadak Apple Records. We ourselves are named after a record label, so this is a particularly interesting aspect for us!

Well, I was releasing my album independently, and I wanted it come from someplace legitimate. In any creative industry, people take you more seriously when you’re coming from a legitimate source. I started Kadak Apple with my good friend and part-time manager, Krish Makhija. We wanted songwriters to be taken more seriously. There’s nothing wrong with playing three-hour brunches, but we felt songwriters in this town had more to offer.

Sometimes [before starting the label], I would get calls saying, “Hey, we want you to play at so-and-so but we can’t afford to pay you that much” – but I felt I deserved it. After I set up the label, I’d ask them, “Why don’t you get in touch with my record label”, and they’d send an email – and I’d respond to the email myself (laughs) but I’d get the gig or the deal this time.

You were just playing the game, basically.

100%. It’s a perception thing; it’s advertising. Right now, Kadak Apple has about nine songwriters on the roster, and I legitimately think that these are some of the best songwriters in the country. But beyond talent, they are mostly there because they are my friends, you know?

Kadak Apple is more of a collective than a label, really. I facilitate opportunities, coordinate artist availabilities with gig requests, coordinate media requests, provide industry contacts – whatever I can offer from my knowledge. I don’t believe in a trade-secret kind of environment. The Indian indie music industry is so small that it’s in my interest right now for everyone to have a No. 1 record. I want to give people a choice of different genres and artists to hear. We need more people to be part of the scene. Eventually, we’ll get to a more commercialized industry. So that was the intention behind Kadak Apple.

As for the name – Krish believes in the whole kadak philosophy. He’s a cinematographer, so he believes the kadak kind of shots. Kadak chai, and so on. And Apple because of Apple Records and the Beatles.

Cool, that’s a fun back story! So switching gears one more time to yet another thing you’re part of – Geek Fruit. Can you tell us a little bit about that?

Geek Fruit is something I started after I quit my job in 2015. I was working crazy hours in advertising, with three hours of travel every day and so on. After I quit, I had a lot of free time. I tried to focus on what could keep me occupied in the time that I didn’t want to do music. And I say that because I don’t really consider myself to be a musician’s musician. I think I’m good at it, and that the craft of songwriting has come to me, but I don’t feel very “artist-y” about the way I approach music. Sometimes, when I hang out with musicians, I still feel that imposter syndrome really hard.

But when it comes to movies, and watching them and talking about them – that’s something I’ve been involved with far longer than I have been with music. I’ve had opinions about movies forever, I love Marvel Comics, DC, Star Wars, so on. And I really feel that the nerds won, you know? When I was a kid and trying to talk about kyber crystals in a Jedi’s lightsaber, no one cared. But now, everyone cares! The biggest TV show, the biggest movies – they’re all from nerd culture now.

I wanted to start something where we can review stuff, do podcasts, make content – this is something I genuinely love. I can say I love it even more than I love music, in some ways. The ability to create is amazing, but the ability to consume, and discuss, is fantastic. So I created Geek Fruit with two friends from Kadak Apple – Jishnu Guha and Dinkar Dwivedi. We’ve been doing podcasts for three years now, with 250+ episodes out – two episodes per week, every week. I’m happy to say we have a humble but dedicated following that come for our events and parties now.

Last year, for Halloween, we had a party called Super Scary Awesome. We did a Disney tribute at the end with our entire band and lots of Kadak Apple people. Everyone dressed up as weird characters. It was one of my proudest moments because it was just so unique.

This has been amazing; thank you, Tejas. We wanted to wrap up with a few Rapid Fire questions, if you’re up for it?

Sure, go for it!

Since you mentioned Marvel, and that’s so big in pop culture right now – who’s your favorite Marvel character (from the comics or the movies) and what’s your favorite movie from the MCU?

I was a big Spiderman fan as a kid; Peter Parker and I go way back. So that’s my favorite. I also love some of the fringe characters: Iron Fist, Daredevil, Moon Girl, so on. Out of all the movies, it’s hard for me to not say [Avengers:] Endgame because they stuck the landing to a very difficult project. I also love [Captain America:] Civil War and [Captain America:] The Winter Soldier.

The other big pop culture phenomenon right now is Game of Thrones – what did you think of the finale?

I have complicated thoughts on it. I’m not going around petitioning that they should remake the show (laughs), but it’s hard to not point out the glaring issues. So yeah, I was disappointed.

People our age are a lot more clued because of things like Reddit. They know why they like or dislike something. This entire season was a disappointment and there were huge pacing issues. There was also the overall question of why they shortened it to six episodes, too. The moment the Night King died, I kind of checked out. You shouldn’t be able to kill him in a physical combat. Why is Jon alive? What was the point of Bran’s whole story? We haven’t gotten the answers to all of these questions.

And if you had to pick a TV show where you loved it from start to finish, what would it be?

I don’t think there is a perfect show, but I think Adventure Time comes pretty close. Apart from that, I love Gilmore Girls, House, Breaking Bad (obviously). 30 Rock is up there, too.

What’s your favorite gig so far?

We played one gig recently in Humming Tree that was really great. We took some risk by taking 100% of the gate, so we had to make the sales on whoever’s actually showed up. We wanted to try out the format. About 120 people or so showed up, and we sold a lot of merch, had posters made, and so on. It was great.

I also really enjoy going to places that don’t get a lot of live music. I went on a tour last year to the North East with Mali, and those were some of the best gigs I’ve done. Playing to different audiences that we’ve never played to before, and having our songs sung back at us – it was amazing.

Who’s one Indian artist that you’d love to collaborate with at some point?

I think Meba Ofilia is amazing. Young, new, R&B / soul kind of singer-songwriter. Chayan [Adhikari] from Advaita. Aditya Ashok from Ox7gen would be next on my list, too.

All images courtesy the artist. Check out Tejas’ website here for more information about him and where to listen to his music.

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Punk And Polish: A Chat with Rishi Bradoo

8 May

Those who have been paying close attention to Mumbai’s indie scene cannot deny the welcome shift in the quality of production in recent years. The scene has been graced by a wave of savvy producer-slash-engineers who have really helped propel the quality of music and cultivate a songwriting mindset among younger artists. Rishi Bradoo, former frontman of Mumbai electro-punk trio Blek and Chief Tinkerer at Theatre 74 studios, is one such torchbearer, with his stamp on some of the city’s finest recent releases including Awkward Bong’s In the Brightest Corners and a string of tracks by Ramya Pothuri. There’s no denying Rishi’s prowess as a studio engineer but that’s just one of the many spices that comprise his secret sauce. We recently caught up with Rishi at his studio in Mumbai to discuss his journey in the music scene and the methods to his magic.

So let’s get this out of the way… How did you get into music?

Right. So I got into music in school. I’d started playing the guitar for some reason and it stuck. That was the time when Superfuzz and the like had just started putting out music. Plus, it generally seemed fun to put chords together. It felt like LEGO. The minute I learned to put these chords together, I quit my guitar classes.

As a teenager, I was particularly frustrated with the way Indian musicians looked at music, which was with this cover-band mindset. Bands around me didn’t seem to care about putting out something truly original and that sort of irked me. That’s how I got to writing my own music. But it wasn’t until college did I get exposed to working with professional musicians. Xavier’s [St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai] surprisingly turned out to be fertile ground for budding musicians at the time. A lot of guys I met at college are working professionally in music right now. My college scene was basically defined by tons of college fests and a failed band.

What failed band?

Let’s not talk about it.  But yeah the first gig I ever played with a “legit” band was at this shitty excuse for a venue called Jazz by the Bay. We were teenagers at the time, and didn’t realize [what we were getting into]. Our first set had 10  “originals” and something like one or two covers. None of the other kid bands were doing that and it seemed pretty radical at the time. After our run of 5 shows at JBTB, we were bitch-slapped into ground reality though. It wasn’t until later that I met Jared and Varoon, our drummer and we would go on to form Blek. For a year we made the rounds of the college circuit and were starting to gain some momentum. We’d get our next gig at the last gig we played. We’d play a gig, talk to somebody after the gig and hustle another gig and eventually it led us to this place called B69.

It was an underground venue and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t legal. Sweat would literally evaporate, condense on the ceilings and then pour out onto the musicians playing on stage. So yeah, it was a pretty gnarly venue but a lot of young bands got to cut their teeth over there… you know… because you could afford to be bad.

We met the Lightyears over there and we would end up sharing a lot of bills together.

2012 was one of the most influential years for me. That was when I was convinced that this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. In early 2012, we cut our record, Hexes + Drama & other reasons for evacuation and things blew up. We started getting booked all over the place. Within a year we had toured the entire country, in our third year of college. We were even invited to play in the UK at the Great Escape Festival.

What was that like?

Playing the Great Escape festival changed a lot of things for us. It was pretty eye-opening. The difference between what standards need to be and where they were in the scene at the time really came to the forefront. I realized that why people make music in the independent music scene in India and why people made music there were two completely different things. This thought had been on my nerves much earlier and was only reinforced when I got there. Interacting with musicians from around the globe was a far cry from the experiences I had in India. It was quite bittersweet actually. It felt like we were lagging behind in many ways but it also opened my eyes to what was possible. We had all this talent lying around that could definitely shine through more clearly if we had a certain change in mindset and environment.

What got you into audio? Was it a general sense of disillusionment with the production quality at the time?  

It wasn’t about production quality. Production quality was inevitably going to get better and was actually quite amazing even at the time, just not in indie music. All the young bands here over the last seven or eight years haven’t really had any good role models to look up to. I don’t consider Shaiir+ Func and Pentagram to be good role models at all!

The general attitude of bands here is:

I have these chords and I kind of made them go together. I also have some lyrics written over some vocal melody and it sounded fine in the jam room so I guess I have a song.

Just because you jammed it out in a jam-room and it sounded “tight” doesn’t make it a complete song. You really need to sit down and focus on the nuances of songwriting and that only comes with focused effort. What a lot of debut artists need to understand is you’re making music, not releasing YouTube content. The way most indie artists in India treat music is as if they’re releasing content.

You know I’ve noticed, whenever an artist enters the studio with the desire to have fun and make something they care about, the record always sounds good. Whether they’re good musicians or not, the record sounds good. There’s a kind of carelessness or honest expression that’s captured. Whenever an artist comes to the studio with this careerist mindset of wanting to release a record because they have to release a record that year, 7 out of 10 times, the record doesn’t sound as great. You can always hear it in the music, when there’s a sense of insincerity in the studio.

People put too much emphasis on mixing, engineering and the like but the actual emphasis should be on the writing.

So coming back to the question… when you’re not in the record cutting business, you don’t realize the kind of effort that goes in. It all seems like knobs and buttons. There’s a lot of microscopic detail that you’re paying attention to and macroscopic details you’re trying to balance out and that takes years is what I’ve realized over time. You kind of pick it up along the way.

For me, at that time, I felt like I could figure the writing part out. But I wanted to cut my own records. I wanted to have decisive control over it, not having to be reliant on the one person in Bombay I trust with my work.

What was Audio School in Alchemea like? Did you get to work with some big ticket producers?

In London, I studied under the guy who mixed Klaxons and Nick Cave. I also got to spend about a week with Tchad Blake who’s a personal hero of mine. He’s the guy who mixed Arctic Monkeys’ AM. He also worked on the Black Keys’ records. But yeah, that’s about it. I don’t think it really matters as much as you’d think. The thing about learning is, it’s more about who you are as a student and not so much about who is teaching. You can go to the best schools with the best teachers and learn jackshit, which I think is the case with most Indian schools to start with. We’re not curious enough. It kind of struck me. As students in India, we’re very badly raised. We’re raised to be scared of failure. We’re raised to answer questions in the way that is prescribed. That’s such a bad environment to build any sort of creative thought. I’ve been very disillusioned with this “college chaapa” mindset. “Oh, he went to Berklee, he must be good”. That doesn’t fly with me. I need to know what his record sounds like to see if he’s really good.

Was it always the plan to come back home from the UK and set up a studio?

No, actually. Part of me wanted to go learn production so that I could cut my own records, but it was also because I wanted to get the fuck away from Bombay. It had gotten really depressing. Like I said, I was very disillusioned with Bombay and the music scene in general. I was so done with the way musicians were functioning here, the way festival organizers were functioning here and the way artist managers were functioning here. It was a huge fucking mess. I felt that if I had the opportunity to go to the UK and not come back, why would I? But then looking back at India , I couldn’t just ignore the opportunities that were present back home. Had I stayed in the UK, I would have had to start at the very bottom of the ladder. Find a studio I could work in, become an assistant engineer, then maybe get promoted, convince artists to entrust me with their work, and so on. I wasn’t sure if I was happy with having such limited opportunities in the UK. The opportunity in India was to set up your own studio, cut your teeth the hard way by jumping into the deep end, not having someone mentor you and to diversify. I can literally do anything I want with this space.

What were the first few artists you recorded when you came back?

In the Brightest Corners by Awkward Bong was the first record I cut after coming back. I was lucky to have that be my first record, you know, as a rookie. The thing about audio school is you spend one year there, and then come into the real world, and the learning curve only steepens. I was really lucky to have such a project because it was hardcore production. I could dictate a lot. I could dictate the chord movements, I could dictate the rhythm section. I could really say: hey, do this, delete that, cut that verse in half. Like really hands-on production.

For me when a person writes a song, it isn’t the sound of the kick drum or the beat. It’s the chords, the lyrics, the melody and the general rhythmic vibe. Now what makes a SONG for me, in big block letters, which is released to the world and makes people feel things, is a combination of really good songwriting and sensible production that complements the songwriting. With the Awkward Bong record, Ronit had enough trust in me to run riot. Sonically, it’s an amateur record, being my first record out of audio school and everything, but the songs were really great and we worked very hard on fleshing them out.

So one of your songs with BLEK, “Fog + Strobe” got a slight makeover and was rechristened as” Byomkesh in Love”, featured in the movie Detective Byomkesh Bakshy! Were you happy with the way that turned out and the experience in general?

Working with Dibakar was pretty great. He always said: if you don’t want to do something, don’t do it. Initially he wanted me to add on this Hindi thumri to the song and I was extremely hesitant. But after I got to listen to it and know the meaning of what was being sung, I was completely on board. I felt like it fit. He wanted a version of the song for the film that went with the visuals of a particular scene, which I found to be a very challenging project. When this person rolled over the table in the action scene, Dibakar wanted a drum roll or toms to replace your traditional sound effects.

So, we were sitting down with him, looking at the scene and producing accordingly, while keeping in mind that it should sound great even as a standalone song. Once he had his shot for the film, he let me have full control over the version of the song that went out on Apple Music and the like. The version that’s out on YouTube or whatever is the version that we wanted and were happy with. Now that’s a good way to work!

What’s BLEK up to now and more importantly, what’s Rishi the musician upto now?

I’d prefer not to divulge premature details. You’ll know when it’s done I guess. *goes on to divulge juicy secrets off the record*

This started out as chat about your musical journey but you were able to turn it into a lesson in life. It was great talking to you man.

Right so to wrap things up, we have a bunch of rapid fire questions we do with all our guests.

Favourite Indian artist right now?

None. I’m serious. I have much higher standards and expectations of Indian artists and we WILL get there!

Pick one of the two you can’t live without: delay or reverb.

I can’t live without delay. I can make delay sound like reverb but not the other way around.

Drink of choice.

It’s usually vodka but now I’m switching to Stranger & Sons gin.

One gig that’s left a permanent mark on you.

This sounds narcissistic but it’s the gig we played with the Lightyears at one of the earlier Ctrl + Alt + Del festivals, at B69.

Three Desert Island discs for when you’re stranded on an island.

  1. Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino by the Arctic Monkeys and let me tell you why. TBH&C is a beautiful record. It has all these tiny, beautiful things that are so “fuck you”.
  2. Sea Change by Beck, without a doubt. He is a rare, beautiful artist. A hero of mine.
  3. A Moon Shaped Pool by Radiohead. It’s actually quite hard to pick a Radiohead record.
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