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Monday, Nov 18, 2019

We might see another wave of indie music resurgence: Parvaaz

Combining indie rock and international progressive influences that translate into a heartfelt yearning for home, the Bengaluru-based band is soaring towards a revival of contemporary non-film music on the scene.

music Updated: Mar 19, 2018 17:32 IST
Etti Bali
Etti Bali
Hindustan Times
Parvaaz is a Bangalore-based rock band that blends sounds of Kashmir in their music.
Parvaaz is a Bangalore-based rock band that blends sounds of Kashmir in their music.

It is true that when away, one looks for the familiarity of home. And this was what happened when musicians Kashif Iqbal and Khalid Ahamed — classmates from Srinagar — rediscovered each other in Bangalore, to bond over a shared interest in writing and performing music. A year later, in 2011, Sachin Banandur joined on drums and Fidel D’Souza on bass, and the band Parvaaz was born. The four went into studio to start work on their first full EP (extended playlist) release, Behosh, which came out in 2012.

The sound of resurgence and resilience from Kashmir, the band could not have been named more aptly — its sounds have an inherent yearning that tugs at the heartsrings. “Our love of music found us writing about instances or memorable times that were unique and special in their own way. We often lend our moods to the soundscapes and let the music take over,” says frontman Ahamed. Guitarist Iqbal adds, “Itne Arse Ke Baad speaks of a longing to return to home, and Ziyankar is a poetic quest to understand the human nature and a deep longing to seek a spiritual solace.”

Ringing notes of chimes and ambient sounds that remind you of home — there is something very familiar about their music. The band believes in following their strengths and fostering their individuality. “Our view has always been to stay true to our sound and find ways to create that aesthetic for our audiences. Staying very process-oriented can help keep your work in line with that direction,” says Ahamed.

Heralding a wave of indie music, bands like them give voice to analog musicians in digital times. “Non-film music has always had some interest in the country, but with so many artists from all over the country ready to perform, we might see another wave of indie music resurgence. The internet helps break such work to the masses,” says Banandur.

Being true to the languages they grew up with is another of the band’s strengths. Kashmiri, Urdu and Hindi dot their lyrical landscape. “They [the languages] are our primary source of communication when it comes to songwriting; not so conscious an effort to keep it so, but it is what is natural to us,” explains Iqbal.

Where do they get their inspiration from? “[Our] music has been inspired continually by a great heritage and the rich folklore that surrounds us. Western music brings progressive elements towards a style that is more guitar-driven, and we find that balance between what we feel is the expression and the vision of the theme,” says Iqbal. Among artists that inspire them are legends from the Indian and international circuits. “Artists and groups like Tinariwen, Radiohead, Pink Floyd, Sigur Ros, Led Zeppelin inspire us. Closer home, we have Indian Ocean and Avial, who have broken the landscape into a very regional voice that our audience relates to,” he adds.

Fans can look forward to the release of a full-length album early next year, and considering the kind of response their song Beparwah, from the Kay Kay Menon-starrer Vodka Diaries has got, the band is also looking to collaborate with more filmmakers.

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