By: Alex Masse, Peak Associate
Vancouver-based duo Glow Motive is, like the ocean they draw inspiration from, in a constant ebb and flow. The pair consists of two brown, queer musicians: Oceaan Pendharkar and Anjalica Solomon. Neither are new faces in the local arts scene — Pendharkar has experience as a solo musical artist and Solomon has spent years in Vancouver’s poetry scene. What brought them together was a series of serendipities and shared experiences. They met at a conference through a mutual friend, and from there, sprang into working together.
“It was just so exciting to meet someone that shared similar experiences to me,” Solomon said. “It kind of provides an easy container for us to love each other and support each others’ dreams.”
The pandemic was also a major factor. They wrote their first songs together over email threads. “I was just so bored in the house,” Solomon laughed. “And I think, also, boredom creates space to dream [ . . . ] A lot of people’s experiences with it during the pandemic resulted in songs, plays, and films.”
And when the time came to go from emails to live entertainment, Glow Motive adapted accordingly. “There have been a series of transitions for sure,” Pendharkar said. “Like, learning to collaborate with each other in different ways. I feel like we’ve already had so many stages, and we’re only releasing our first song now.”
According to Solomon, the summer of 2022 was when things started to gain momentum. They had the opportunity to perform in front of audiences, including at the Music Talks festival in Maple Ridge.
Because of the band’s collaborative nature, both Solomon and Pendharkar regularly check in with each other and keep conscious of their limits. “I feel like the transition is ongoing, both within the world and in our band,” Pendharkar said. “As a polyamorous person, one thing I bring to my relationships is the idea it’s a constantly evolving thing, rather than a series of steps you go through.”
But one thing’s constant: the creative chemistry. “The first time we wrote a song together, in person, Oceaan brought their guitar, and I showed up with a pen and paper, and we wrote a song in one hour,” Solomon recalls. “I’ve consistently felt that us, as creative collaborators, [we’re] really aligned. I think it has something to do with our values, and stuff like that being aligned, too.”
And that alignment is witnessed best in “Show Me You’re Here,” the band’s debut single, which was pre-released on February 3 on their Bandcamp. The dreamy pop track carries themes of grief, ancestors, and self-discovery. The ethereal harmonies and backing vocals are laid over a downtempo, percussive beat, resulting in a distinct, aquatic sound.
As a debut, the track made sense — it was the first song written for the band, when the two were in similar states of mind, each grieving the death of a grandparent.
“We had lost and were losing,” Pendharkar said. “The feelings in this song were something that we could connect on, because it was an experience we were both feeling, and we’re trying to share understanding about it.”
“The pandemic happening shortly on the heels of my grandfather’s death, I was in this deep grief,” Solomon said. “It felt like the world was closing into this kind of cocoon. When we started collaborating, I think I was slowly coming out of that, or still in that.”
Solomon also cited the duo’s various Scorpio placements for the emotional depth to their work. And true to their water sign influence, the aquatic theming persists throughout the track; lyrically and sonically, it brings to mind images of the ocean and other bodies of water. “The initial image of the song was, for me, returning to the ocean,” Solomon said. “Letting the ocean hold my grief, and not having to hold it myself.”
“That’s where it started,” Pendharkar agreed. “When I think of water and grief, I think of cleansing, and the water’s also the depth [ . . . ] The ocean is something you can go to, to hold your feelings.”
“Show Me You’re Here” will have a prerelease on Bandcamp come February 3, followed by a wide release on February 10, and a music video on February 24. Follow Glow Motive on Instagram at @glow.motive.
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