Angad Berar on his upcoming album and why he's moved to a more ambient space with his music
ANGAD BERAR HESITATES a little before describing his music as ‘forward thinking and boundary breaking’, but we concur. Introspective and iridescent, his sound veers between colourful psychedelia to peaceful ambient. The Bengaluru-based musician recently released three songs and is working on his upcoming album, A Broadcast, Underwater. The eight-track album is the outcome of the uncertainty and the ambiguity this year has thrust upon us.
Angad started playing rock in school with his sister, Amrit. Later becoming part of Pune-based band, Same Sh*t, Different Day, the artiste explored grunge and blues. His solo journey started in 2018. “Tone wise, I haven’t yet locked in to a sound that I can call my own,” admits the artiste who lists The F16s, Lifafa, Jimi Hendrix and Ustad Asad Ali Khan as inspirations. Rather than having a genre-driven approach, he prefers to just characterise his music as positive and explorative. “My music naturally takes up the format of an environment rather than a song. I approach the songs from a ‘feeling’ point of view more than from that of a genre. I love the idea of creating layers of sound, like creating a bed of lush green grass, for the listener to walk on,” he says. His previous album, Elephants On The Beach, was geared towards psychedelic rock with traces of Hindustani classical.
But, A Broadcast, Underwater, moves away from this to an unmistakably ambient realm, which is born as a response to the times we are living in. “This album is essentially ambient, sans any drums or percussive rhythm. These days there is less movement in our lives, so the thought was to remove the rhythm aspect from it and keep it more or less linear,” he explains.
The three new songs are whimsically titled WashedInSepia, HeartbeatOfATwig and Waltzin’WithMissLazy. They are atmospheric with an overtone of nostalgia. The lucidity of the music washes over you in waves. The eight-track album assimilates sounds and sonic environments that Angad found solace in during times of trouble. “Soundscapes of the city — birds, distant sounds of traffic, my pressure cooker, the gentle hum of ceiling fans post midnight — all inspire me,” he shares.
The album uses a guitar, keyboard, kalimba, and a plethora of field recordings and was produced by sound engineer Ashrey Goel. “It is currently being mixed and mastered. Hopefully, we can lock these babies and launch them sometime in September,” Angad signs off.
Available on online streaming platforms