Pineapple Express’ new EP Passages is inspired by the dark side of the world we live in
THE NEW PINEAPPLE Express EP is the result of all that the world has witnessed in 2020. “Passages takes inspiration from the dark side of the world we currently live in. The overlapping grey areas of power, control and faith fuel the lyrical direction of the songs,” says Karthik Chennoji Rao, the vocalist of the Bengaluru-based progressive fusion band. The seven-member outfit, which was born in 2016, blends Carnatic music with rock, electronic and progressive elements.
The band members — Yogeendra Hariprasad, Jyothish Mani, Ritwik Bhattacharya, Arjun MPN and Gopi Shravan TS, Jimmy Francis John and Karthik — all bring their unique influences to the table. The band’s hit single Money, was followed up by the debut EP Uplift in 2018. The latest four-track album was recorded during the lockdown and that came with its own set of challenges. “The idea wasn’t to make an album particularly during this time. But inspiration struck, and we decided to go with the flow,” says Ritwik, adding, “Being in the middle of a lockdown had its complications, and we couldn’t meet very often. We had to make the most out of whenever we could meet.”
The tracks on the album are titled Vultures, Destiny, Relentless and Paralyse. The themes of the song are inspired by the striking events that have been taking place globally this year. “If we can truly call something an inspiration for the whole EP, it would have to be the year 2020. It was written amidst racial tensions, threats interrupting world peace and a pandemic bringing the world to a grinding halt. So the themes revolve heavily around these subjects. Each of us has lent our own influences to the EP, making it a mixed pot of ideas and emotions, which fall into place cohesively,” Karthik adds.
The songs on Passages coherently marry heavy progressive melodies with the graceful tunes of the flute and the fierce drum beats. “I think every piece of music one listens to, subconsciously finds its way into the music one writes after. Our sound is a result of the intent to stand out from everything else, and consciously avoiding influences to whatever extent possible,” says Yogeendra. He believes that with Passages, that band has broken more barriers than its previous releases, and gotten people to enjoy and discover this melange of styles that they offer.
Available on online streaming platforms