Thinking Out Loud

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Indian Ocean-Fathers of Indian Rock n' roll

Monday, July 19, 2010

Kaushik: Tell us about your upcoming album ‘16/330 Khajur Lane’.

Amit- First of all, tell me how do you found out the name of the album?

Kaushik: Umm… I found it on the net.

Amit- Damn!These kids!

Rahul Ram- 25th July is the proposed date of release. The album will be available only on our website for free.




Kaushik:  Full-length Album for free download on the net!!! Any particular reason why?

Susmit- Because we love our audience…

Amit- Because we, after working for 20 years have realized that there could be two goals for a musician- to make good music and reach and secondly to make a certain amount of money. Now, the latter does not apply to Indian musicians. Music companies don’t pay here or let’s say the way people do Business here in India just doesn’t work for Musicians in general.

Susmit- thing is- that we have NOT really earned much from our previous albums, although they have sold a lot. Plus sometimes the companies are not willing or able enough to put out our cds in the market due to business strategies. So this time around, we got to thinking- ‘why should we let the album go through such a large time-consuming distribution channel, when we can’t even reach out to our audience properly?’

Rahul- that’s something that happened with ‘Jhini’. The company had to shut down sales for the album and hence a very large audience couldn’t access it anymore.


Kaushik: Will it be any different from your previous work- specially with the absence of long time friend and original front-man Asheem Chakravarty?

Susmit- Thing is that, Asheem cannot be replaced just the way he was. Therefore, this album is bound to be different in one way or the other. After he left, we had to look for another direction basically. Each one of us has and has always had our own individual identity- one that largely contributes to the concept and sound of the band.  Same was the case with Asheem.

Koushik sir: When Asheem passed away, what was the instant feeling that came into your minds?

Rahul: It was the word FUCK! He was just recovering from a two-month long coma and seeing somebody come back and go away again so abruptly, was very heartrending.


Kaushik: You guys did the soundtrack for the movie ‘Black Friday’. Any plans of taking up more Bollywood ventures?

Rahul- Peepli live, 13th August. It’s an Aamir Khan production. We’ve done the opening and closing tracks for the film.

Rahul ( to Koushik sir)- Saah khaabi? (meaning- want some tea?)
Kaushik: huh! You know Assamese!?!
Rahul: It’s almost the same you know. All our Indian languages.

Kaushik: Tell us about your array of influences. Who did you listen to as teenagers?

Rahul- My Teenage was a long time ago!

Susmit- S.D Burman
Rahul- Me too! Also, I listened to a lot of Deep purple and Led zeppelin. I listened to most classic era bands, actually. Funny thing is, back then- there was almost no Metal around. Iron Maiden was like the first of kind proto-metal band of that era…

Amit- and then there was Kiss.

Rahul- LOL!!! They were real funny. They used to dress up like big mean devils from hell. Much to everybody’s despair, their sounds were pretty soft and fun. Complete overlap between the way they looked and the way they sound. I still dunno why they did that.

Kaushik: In a recent interview you mentioned that the band has recently recorded two originals in your jamming space. How will that be any different from the music that you make in studios? Do you prefer Home productions over Studio material?

Rahul: Maybe not all the time. But yes, to large extent. Without this home recording facility, even ideas used to get lost once in a while. Now, what we can do is record a song or part as soon as we think about it or when we come up with an idea and then keep it for future use.

Kaushik: It is interesting to note that as a band, you don’t write your own lyrics. Some of them are from traditional folk tunes and are sung in their original language, while the others are written by either Sanjev Sharma or Biyush Mishra. Can you give us an idea on why this is done?

 Rahul- Because we’re not good at writing songs ourselves! How’s that for an answer? (laughs)

Amit-No seriously, None of us have that poetic ability.

Rahul- Just like Himesh thinks he can act, but he shouldn’t!!! Everybody can’t do everything!!!

Amit- No! listen!!! He’s a serious guy. Have you seen his comedy? Oh…sorry, that was his romance?!?

Kaushik: Any bands from North-east that you might’ve have heard of?  Rahul- Everybody’s heard of the great Lu Majaw.
Susmit- Papon
Amit- Then there’s soulmate
(and they went on and on…)

Kaushik: How many times have you been to the North-east?

Rahul- thrice, I believe.

Amit- The first time it was wonderful- in IIT. The second time it was a little weird, because it was some 30 people listening to us upstairs on a roof at someone’s place.

Rahul- there was one time in Diphu….Diphu was amazing!!!Out of this world experience… there were some 13-14000 people there. And we played after Warklung. People were mouthing his originals during his set, so we had this preconceived that it wouldn’t turn out to be that good for us. But to our amazement, people loved our set- so much so that many of the regional artists sent word that they wanted to jam onstage.

Rahul- there was also this funny thing that happened that day. A policeman asked us why we had come to Diphu…and we went like ‘what do you mean?’ then, he replied blaming us for the large crowd that had gathered in the show which was evidently turning out to be a head-ache for him and his colleagues . Followed by that, these TV guys came to us asking the questions like- ‘Why have you come to the North-east to play? Isn’t it dangerous?’. My reaction to all of this was like- ‘Eh? Why are you asking us these questions? Stupid question to ask!’ I mean- more people die of accidents in Delhi than that of Violence in the North-east, so does that give me reason enough to not let you go to Delhi?





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