Issue 9

Apartment Upstairs

If you are looking to break the monotony of your everyday pandemic routine with some feet tapping, rhythm-driven beats and rock, tune into hearing Apartment Upstair’s new single, ‘Mahua’ available on Spotify and YouTube Music. 

Starting out as two college students at Ashoka University, who shared the love for making music and ‘How I Met Your Mother’, Rohan Pai (singer-guitarist) and Shourjo Chatterjee (drummer) came together in their first year of college only to deliver constant bangers, one after the other. While it is no doubt college demands quite a bit of effort, the duo has been able to produce their first EP titled ‘Two on the Line’, mainly indie-rock music and is currently working towards exploring further genres of R&B, jazz and hip-hop.

To create their music, the pair first comes up with a vocal melody and beat which is then supplemented with relatable lyrics that take the listener to a different world altogether. Mahua released in February 2021, captures the essence of escapism that various individuals might be feeling with this prolonged pandemic of wanting to “pack up my bags and go living my dreams”. 

Their music tends to speak to the audience, because of how they share their experiences, making it personal yet relatable. They aim at actively taking part and achieving recognition in the independent music genre in India. 

While there is some hope for the pandemic to come to an end, the duo provides us something more to look forward to with their upcoming single ‘Star tonight’ going live at some time end of March 2021.

Issue 7

NPR Tiny Desk Concert: Anderson .Paak and the Free Nationals

Courtesy: YouTube, NPR Music

It’s no surprise that Anderson .Paak’s concert is the most viewed video of the NPR Tiny Desk Concert Series. Backed by long-time collaborators, Free Nationals, .Paak offers stripped down versions of songs from his then released record, Malibu. Intimate, informal and ingenious, the band offers an unmatched dynamism as an R&B four-piece outfit. What stands apart is .Paak’s performance as a singer-drummer. Switching between effortless rap and flowing vocal melodies, .Paak never loses hold of his tight drum groove that is accentuated throughout by Kelsey Gonzales’ bass playing.

Over these laid-back grooves is the perfect coalescence of hip hop and soul music, offering a perfect entry point into rap music for those who tend to drift away from hip hop’s usual associations with old-school gangsta rap, or trap music. Even if the music doesn’t strike a chord with your musical inclinations on first listen, .Paak’s charming smile, the band’s chemistry and humorous banter in between songs will leave you captivated. Throughout the performance, look out for the band member wearing shades, he is undoubtedly the one who stands out from the rest.

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