In conversation with Disco Puppet about his new EP, Thoughts To Melt To
The artiste speaks to us about his eclectic inspirations and moving away from a technologically-driven approach
Shoumik Biswas, better known by his stage name, Disco Puppet, has always had retro and nostalgic streaks in his music. “I'm not entirely sure why I have this fascination for them. But I know that I am interested in memories and how they warp over time. It makes me feel a certain way. Almost as if the uncertainty of the future is gone for a moment. Maybe that’s what I’m chasing,” he tells us. His latest EP, Thoughts To Melt To, stems from a similar place — a stripped down, raw sound, where the focus shifts from production to the overall feel.
“I had been listening to Daniel Johnston’s 1983 album, Hi How Are You?. The simplicity of the cassette recordings stood out. The sound had a nostalgic yet melancholic charm to it. I was inspired to write songs and record everything live... warts and all. I think sometime in the last year, I’ve started to get a little bored of technology as my main idea generator... not that there’s anything wrong with it,” he says.
The cover art, created by artist Shreya Bhatia, is a representation of a person trapped inside their own imagination. We found the same unfiltered approach, that the album holds, being reflected in the art as well. Drawing inspirations from genres such as indie, pop as well as rock, the five-track EP touches on themes of loss, stillness and the general irony of life, but is also very timely in its outlook. The track Romeo and Juliet, for instance, is about two lovers in quarantine who promise to meet each other after the lockdown. Other songs include Peace Lily Parody, Temporary Paradise and a bonus sixth track, Stuckened, only for people who buy the album of Bandcamp. “The songs were written in a relatively short span of time,” he adds. The recording and mixing was done by Shoumik at his home studio during this lockdown period.
His previous album Aranyer Dinratri was named after the 1970 Satyajit Ray movie of the same name. So what are some of the inspirations behind this EP, we ask him. “The song Nosty Boy, is a tribute to the Rugrats character, Chuckie. And the animated TV show, Big Mouth, had some part to play in the song, Don’t Be Sad, The Boogie Man’s Back! The boogie man in the song is sort of modelled after the Hormone monster, a character in the show,” Shoumik says.
“I am also donating 100 per cent of the album sales to either Give India or Goonj to help with their efforts to provide relief for daily wage workers in India. Hopefully, I will be able to collect a reasonable amount of money to send to the organisation,” the artiste signs off.
Thoughts to Melt To will be available on online streaming platforms on May 3