Monday Music: Intro to Indian Indie

Monday Music: your weekly themed playlist. Image courtesy of The Peak.

All of the Monday Music for the Summer 2020 semester is now be available on The Peak’s Spotify Playlist, Monday Music Summer 2020. Don’t forget to follow thepeaksfu on Spotify to listen more easily!

By: Dhruv Taware, Peak Associate

For the longest time, music in India has been dominated by either Bollywood or Indian Classical. The growing independent music (indie) scene in India seeks to challenge this duopoly. By skillfully incorporating Western influences with traditional sounds and creatively weaving important political messages, indie outfits are changing the way in which people in India look at music. Here are some acts worth your time.


Lifafa

Courtesy of Suryakant Sawhney

Lifafa (Suryakant Sawhney) is well known as the frontman of the genre-bending outfit, Peter Cat Recording Company (PCRC). His first solo project, Jaago जागो is a beautiful mash-up of indie-electronic beats and old-timey Bollywood vocals. “Din Raat” features a groovy disco tune layered with soothing vocals. Songs such as “Jaago” and “Candy” are a mixture of melodic harmonium sounds and moody electronic beats. His work explores a variety of topics from the current political state in India to the monotonous nature of life.  

 

Karshni

Courtesy of Three Oscillators & Karshni

Karshni Nair is a 20 year old pop singer-songwriter. She pairs her soulful voice with a wide range of instrumentation, from soft acoustics to catchy pop beats. Her melancholic vocals on “Drowning” perfectly capture the feeling of anxiety and sadness. Songs such as “joji” and “love me tinder” are simple pop numbers with funny and relatable takes and are available to listen to on SoundCloud.

 

 The F16s 

Courtesy of House Arrest

The F16s are an indie-rock band based out of Chennai, headed by the enigmatic Josh Fernandez. Tracks on Triggerpunkte such as “Summer in My Lungs” and “Moon Child” are reminiscent of chilling in your room on a hot summer afternoon. Their recent sound on WKND FRNDS see them explore a more atmospheric and dreamier soundscape on songs such as “Amber,” “My Baby’s Beak,” and “WKND FRNDS.”

 

Bawari Basanti 

Courtesy of Songdew.

Bawari Basanti (Mahima Dayal Mathur) is a Dehli based Hindustani classical singer and rapper. “Kya Bolein” and “Chalein Kahin” show her prowess in classical singing as well as her ability to deftly add other elements to elevate her sound. Her hip-hop song “Izehaar” is one of the most powerful songs in recent times that sheds light on the systematic oppression of women and their freedom in Indian society.

 

Taba Chake

Courtesy of Taba Chake.

Taba Chake is a singer-songwriter from Arunachal Pradesh, currently based out of Mumbai. His beautiful voice pairs very well with his simple acoustics. In “Aao Chalein” he talks about his journey of moving from a small village to a big city. Tracks such as “Walk With Me” and “Keeping Me From Sleep Tonight” show his versatility, with one being a dreamy ballad the other being a fast-paced song. Through his songs in Hindi, English, and his native Nyishi (“Hugulo,” “No Doma Lo”), Taba truly embodies the multi-lingual Indian youth.