Popular as Zokhuma, music producer Arman Menzies is all set to perform in Hyderabad
Catch the artiste at Heart Cup Coffee tonight.
While his co-band members from Mumbai’s metal band, Goddess Gagged, took a temporary break in 2013, guitarist and music composer Arman Menzies chose to continue making music. He started his solo electronic act, Zokhuma. The idea behind the name, Arman says, is to be another version of himself. “The name is from Mizoram, where my dad’s side of the family belongs to. It’s a connection to my roots. But I only started using it after I visited and reconnected with that side of my family seven years ago,” adds the Mumbai-based singer-songwriter. This weekend, the 26-year-old artiste will perform as a part of MOVE, a montly gig organised by Heart Cup Coffee. “This is my third gig in Hyderabad, but first with Heart Cup Coffee. My set will have a mix of sounds — from tribal to cosmic and club,” says the sound engineering graduate, who has played at Dimensions Festival in Croatia and Magnetic Fields Festival. “Playing at Dimensions festival was a massive highlight for me. Just being there was an experience. Apart from that, opening for Guns N’ Roses with my band Goddess Gagged would qualify as a landmark moment,” he adds.
His recent two-track EP, Hearts + Fields, is a trance-inducing composition with an occasional increase in tempo over the end of the first track. “This EP is all about a time and place in my head that I tried to turn into music. The tunes reflect my physical and emotional state,” shares the 26-year-old.
A metalhead at heart, Arman loves listening to a melange of sounds including hip-hop, soul and blues. His music also has influences of Afro beats, beach and psychedelic tunes. “I have always been a conscious listener. I took guitar lessons as a child and wanted to be like my idols Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Guns N’ Roses and Pink Floyd,” he says.
Music is a serious business for Arman, whose aim is to use all his resources to get more people interested in various genres of music than just stick to the mainstream and commercial sounds that currently exist. “We got boxout.fm (an online radio station that focuses on alternative music in India) who is trying to let people know that a lot of different music is happening in your own country. The system is always fighting us — police, venues and permissions. But we are determined to express ourselves and hopefully one day, we’ll be able to see past the stigma that is attached to this kind of expression and life,” says Arman.
July 20, 8 pm onwards.
At Heart Cup Coffee, Jubilee Hills.