‘I had no idea it would happen’: Komorebi, on her EMA nomination for Best India Act
This year’s Europe Music Awards by MTV has turned out to be quite a big surprise for New Delhi-based alternative electronica artiste Tarana Marwah, who has been nominated in the Best India Act category. The experimental musician, who goes by the stage name Komorebi, finds herself in the company of different generations of musicians, whose work vastly differ from each other. While on the one hand, we have rock ’n’ roll pioneers Parikrama for their latest album Tears of the Wizard along with rap queen Raja Kumari for Shook, on the other we see indie phenom Prateek Kuhad (cold/mess) and Gully Boy-fame hip hop artiste Emiway Bantai (Daawat). Ahead of the ceremony, we caught up with Tarana, who shared with us her thoughts on her fellow nominees, the evolution of her soundscape, and upcoming projects. Excerpts:
Did you expect to be nominated for Best India Act at the EMA? How excited are you?
I had no idea that I would get nominated. It happened after I won the Vh1 Artist of the Month competition that was happening online and it came as a huge surprise. Honestly, it’s a huge deal for me and I’m very excited and kind of really appreciate all the support and love that I’m getting from whoever’s voting!
Is there anyone from your fellow nominees that you would love to collaborate with?
That’s a good question. I think they are all really fantastic artistes and they are very unique and it’s great to be nominated along with them. It’s difficult to imagine a collaboration with any one of these artists because we are all into different genres but I would love to work with Raja Kumari. I think we’d write an interesting track if we did.
How were you inspired to become a musician?
I got into music thanks to my parents, who really pushed me into it. I’ve always been into music since I was very young. I got into Classical Western piano when I was seven years old. Since then I’ve been pursuing music in different styles and forms, like jazz, vocals and choir. Now I’m doing electronic music. At one point I did folk so it’s been a really long journey and I don’t think I could do anything else if I tried because it has been too long, i.e. this relationship I share with art. It has become a part of my personality and an extension of me.
How would you describe your musical style? How much has it evolved over the years?
It’s ambient electronic music or even alternative actually. There are different songs with lyrics that are usually about my life and what I go through and what’s going on in my head. The music that I was putting out as Komorebi started off as instrumental. The first EP was instrumental and that was very experimental. I released that when I was 18 years old and decided to see how things go from there. Now my music has grown into this crazy monster that just breathes life now; it has a soul. There are many music videos that I get done with themes and animated characters. Street performances include setup of cosplay or an anime vibe to it. It’s really grown and become something I didn’t expect it to become. All of that has just happened in a mercurial sort of way.
Take us through how you prepare for your live performances.
Well, I use Abelton Live which is a DAW digital audio workshop. I prepare my session, usually take a day off before the show and I have a bunch of different toys that I bring to the stage. Right now I am currently an Alesis and Akai sponsored artiste so I have Alesis and Akai gears, but sometimes I mix it up. It’s just about mixing it up and finding the most innovative way to perform. I love playing the keys, it is something that just comes to me. I really like having a keyboard in front of me.
Are there any upcoming projects or tracks in the pipeline? Could you shed some light on the same?
Yes absolutely. I am releasing a track really soon called Chanda, which is a song that I’ve written in Hindi. I’m also releasing a collaborative track with Curtain Blue (an artist from Delhi) — it’s called Green Tea.
Europe Music Awards will air on Vh1 India on November 4. 6 am onwards.