Imagine yourself in front of a crowd who don’t know AWKS and you have to introduce yourself and keep them hooked. How would you do it?
We as a band are more focussed on our live performances and we try to deliver an experience. Since we don’t talk much on stage, I guess the crowd needs to see and feel our energy and the vibe, which always happens with a couple of songs. I am sure they will connect to us in some way and will be hooked.
Your music is so overwhelming and so subtle at the same time with a hint of enchanting vocals. That is just me deciphering it, How would you describe your music?
Thank you so much for your wonderful view on our music. The best part of playing instrumental music is that it doesn’t need a particular description. You as a listener can take the song however you want, how you wish to connect to the song depends on you. We would never want to say that, ok our music is about XYZ and you install this fact in your head and feel the same like us. No. The choice is yours, be free.
It’s striking to see that an indie band playing internationally would choose Hindi as the medium to voice out their lyrics! What made you choose the language, Hindi?
Let me correct you here. We are a Hindi speaking band and that has taken us international, not the other way around. We never thought anything before starting to make music in Hindi. I personally have been singing in Hindi for quite some time and it is more comfortable for me to use the same language in my songs. When I did some scratches, Shubham liked it and that’s when we decided we keep it to what we are comfortable with, what we enjoy.
What drives you to compose such hypnotising pieces? Is it all personal or do you take cues from your favourite musicians too?
We’re definitely influenced by a lot of artists. I’m sure our influences do reflect in our music too.
Basically, all our lyrics are about life, nature and love and we do look back at our experiences in life while writing music. We have travelled a lot after our first album, and I am sure, all the experiences, beautiful moments, new friends we made different food we tried will find its place in our next album. That’s what is the biggest influence for a musician always, Travel!
What inspired you to make “Khwaab”?
Khwaab came in parts. First was our EP Growing Suspicions in 2013. Me and Shubham were writing music together and we wanted it to be out in public. So we released the EP. Later our project made its mark as a live band. We belong from Ahmedabad, and we don’t have any scene here. We had to come out. The whole journey of us coming out and playing gigs gave us moments to cherish for life and new friends. The band got new drummer and bassist. Our sound changed with Gautam and Bob joining us, so it was obvious for us to record the new sound with the new songs that we made. And that was Khwaab!
Every video that you make is so perfectly crafted to suit the context of the song. How important do you think the visual narration is to exactly articulate the meaning/emotion of a song?
Visual elements to a song always make an impact and for us it has always been that way. Even if you look at our album artworks you will find that we keep it simple. We try on something that people can remember even without seeing it. We try to do the same with our videos too.
You pulled off some sold out shows in Russia recently, congratulations on that. So, how did a band playing in Ahmedabad got a ticket to rock it in Russia?
That didn’t come easy or in some days. We worked on it for a year. We got signed by the Russian label “Flowers Blossom in The Space” and planned about the tour and album launch for a long time. So good planning helped us to execute it well.
With each musical genre, having such a rich history and diverse background, do you feel that music means something different to performers of different styles? How does this affect your work with different artists?
Music has the power that’s not even explored. Every genre has some influence to throw, to inspire and every performer has the same to offer. It’s all about trying to be open and accepting different forms of music. We always have so much to learn and explore even in our own music. Nowadays every indie band is open to explore new music and style and it is great.
As India is concerned in the music industry, financial situations are hard for a band and it seems people give up on the search for their dream. What do you think the dream for your band is and are you searching for it?
India is in a great state right now. The independent music scene is booming and things have changed so much, in a better way since the last 5 years. All thanks to OML who definitely changed the complete scenario and our view on the indie music business in India. They have done and are doing a great job. Venues have started growing in numbers, more brands are coming on board for sponsorships, things are really good, trust me. I am sure now we can do music full time and survive.
And as for us, we are only looking at making more music right now. We are a new band and it’s only been two years so we have a long way to go.
Do you feel marketing is important in shaping a musician, or do you think good music is all it takes to break the wall?
Marketing is the key.
Good music, you can make and play it in your bedroom. But how does that come to a reality? How do you reach people? If your goal is to make music for yourself, don’t worry about this crazy bitch called Marketing. If not, and you want to grow as a musician, travel, reach new place with your music,then Marketing is something that you need to take seriously. I have met musicians in my life who once said “Let’s be perfect musician, jam till you bleed, be perfect and then everyone will come looking for you.” Sorry boss, no one will come. Everyone has a lot of good things to do in life. You need to go out and make sure your work is heard and noticed.
More and more people are into downloading music rather than buying original copies. What are your thoughts on that?
That’s ok. I am fine with it. It’s 2016, things have changed. Kids nowadays might not have seen a cassette player or the inlay that used to come with the cassette. I used to buy them so I could feel it, read everything about the music, how it was made, who wrote what. But it’s not the same anymore and no one should be blamed. Let them download but if they like an artist, they should come for live concerts. That’s all I would urge.
Making music through all these years and coming so far to attain international acclamation, would you like to point out any roadmaps to the younger musicians?
It’s about how passionate you are to do a thing and choosing to walk that way. If you love doing something just stick to it. Struggle is everywhere, it was there even when I was working as an application engineer on a 9 to 5 job. But struggle now with being a musician makes me happy and contained because that’s what I love the most and it keeps me satisfied.
In conclusion, we would like to know what is the scene we should be expecting from your band in the near future. And that if we want to catch pieces from “Khwaab” live on stage where should we be headed to?
Oh we are about to record our next album. Songs are ready and we are jamming on them before we hit the studio. We plan to release the album early next year. For now, you can catch us live at:
Sept 23rd : The Humming tree
Bangalore Oct 16th : Red Bull Tour Bus Off the Roof MUMBAI
Oct 19th : Summerhouse Café New Delhi
Oct 21-22 : Bacardi Weekender Shillong
Nov 5-6 : Bacardi Weekender Hyderabad
Dec 2-4 : Bacardi Weekender Pune
Dec 9-11 : Into The Void, Rann of Kutch
Expect some new songs on all our live concerts! :)
You can find more about aswekeepsearching at the following links: