An exciting concoction

An exciting concoction

An exciting concoction

The further you go, you never coming back you know… So hold on tight, look ahead enjoy the ride’ — the lyrics of ‘Time’, can be referred to describe the journey of its creators Ashvin Mani Sharma and Ash Roy.

Prominent producers and founding members of the now no more, yet well-known band ‘Jalebee Cartel’, Ashvin and Ash are holding on to the best ideas of the past, while enjoying their ride with a futuristic view.Fabricators of the  blooming electronic band ‘Bit of Both’, the duo (known to connect differences with similarities), have received fame across the cities for their debut album ‘Prequels and Sequels’.  The power-packed duo who recently rocked the City with their debut performance, talk about their inspiration and more.

“A collection of moods and moments, the album has tracks that are really old ideas, which we have re-worked on, and brand new tracks, which makes up for album’s name,” says Ashvin adding, “This album has come because we miss playing live and jamming with other musicians.”

Merging percussive elements with house and techno, the album features collaborations with producers Grain and Khora and singer Anushka Manchanda, along with guitarist Bhrigu Sahni. Deep with minimal sounds, their tunes are peppy and groovy, which at times puts one into a euphoric trance mood as well. With tunes that are dance-floor friendly but not limited by it, Ash explains, “As solo artistes we produce techno and minimal. But as ‘Bit of Both’, it is experimental music with live vocals and percussions. The album has influences of house, techno and minimal,” to which Ashvin adds, “The genre is just electronic, we are not restricting ourselves. The focus is on writing memorable pieces of music, which have a repeat listening value.”

Since Jalebee Cartel’s disbanding in 2012, the not-so-new faces in the dance music world, set up Soupher Records, an underground music label to find like-minded musicians and bring them under one banner.

An outlet for forward thinking and experimental music producers from India and from around the word, the label has offered a platform for various independent artistes and help grow the underground scene including techno, minimal, house and all the sub-genres that go with it.

  “After two and a half years, we have made an impression on the world scene and a lot of ‘bigwigs’ are happy to sign up with us now. That shows that we are making the right moves,” says Ashvin with pride.

An offbeat band that holds on to the beats rhythmically with unconventional sounds from acoustic instruments, Ash goes back in time and explains the mainstream music scenario then and compares it to today’s progression. He says, “From when I started off in 1998 to what is happening now is incredible. The scene is growing fast and exponentially. Today there are more promoters, artistes and festivals than ever before who are promoting underground music. I just wish people would focus on the good stuff instead of what they don’t like and this would take us a long way.” Ashvin affirmatively agrees with his partner adding, “Music festivals and venues are focusing on homegrown talents, so it is really a good time for us. Just one look at our roster, which features some amazing Indian producers, will tell you that Indian music scene is growing and is on par with the international music scenario.”