The Sunflower Effect: Tech Panda X Kenzani on their version of the Post Malone and Swae Lee track

Rupinder Nanda and Kedar Santwani, better known as Tech Panda X Kenzani, take Indian electronica global as they recreate the chartbuster track Sunflower for Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse
Exclusive Interview: Tech Panda X Kenzani
Exclusive Interview: Tech Panda X Kenzani

All it took was an Instagram Reel for music aficionados to figure out that New Delhi-based Tech Panda X Kenzani have what it takes to get a party started. Fairly popular in the capital city prior to going viral, Tech Panda and Kenzani, originally named Rupinder Nanda and Kedar Santwani respectively, became a much-celebrated duo overnight with their track Dilbar. But their success is not just making waves within the home country. The two are going global and how!

They recreated the chartbuster track Sunflower by Post Malone and Swae Lee for the recently released Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse alongside singer Badal on the vocals. The producers gave the original track an Indian feel with their trademark emotive electronica sound without stripping its original vibe of a sweet love song. We speak to the musical duo about how they approached this recreation.

Speaking to us about the response, Kenzani shares that while the original song has been embedded in the Spider-Verse DNA, their job was to add a little icing on the cake and the reviews so far have been nothing but positive. Tech Panda, on the other hand, says, “I think just our presence, however minuscule, in the Marvel universe, is significant for us.”

Tech Panda (Left) x Kenzani (Right)
Tech Panda (Left) x Kenzani (Right)

We use this opportunity to know more about their upcoming projects, how they deal with the ever-evolving and partly Instagram-driven music industry and more. Read excerpts:

Tell us about your stage names — Tech Panda and Kenzani.

Tech Panda: Mine comes from a nickname given to me when I was growing up. I was usually lazy and had panda-like movements given my build. Everyone around me started calling me Panda. I was always into electronic music studying mainly techno so the name was created — Tech Panda.

Kenzani: No long stories here. My first name is Kedar so I grabbed the ‘Ke’ from there and my last name is ‘Santwani’ so I took the ‘Ani’ from there. Formed it together and called myself ‘Kenzani’ because no other artist had taken it.

Another international song that you would want to recreate?

Kenzani: Given the chance, we would love to recreate Passionfruit by Drake. One of the songs closest to our hearts with a vibe like no other.

Tech Panda: I would love to do my version of any Al Green classic.

The Dilbar Duo 
The Dilbar Duo 

Do you feel the pressure to keep creating songs that can turn into internet favourites?

Tech Panda: There is no such pressure but we feel like we have begun to understand the music market a bit more. An artiste’s sound keeps evolving and this moment is no different.

Kenzani: We regularly take a pause and have discussions about where we are going with our sound and what we want the future of our music catalogue to be like. We are open to creating all genres of music so the pressure has actually never really existed for us.

You are both into Indian electronica, a space that is growing but is very saturated at the same time. What motivates you to keep evolving as artistes?

Tech Panda: We would have to disagree on the Indian Electronica space being saturated. In our opinion, the space needs at least a hundred more artistes to provide a good catalogue. The tracks we have in the space now are numbered (at least recently).

Kenzani: We constantly try to seek excitement through new combinations and soundscapes. Evolution is inevitable in every field and music is no different. We live in an age of evolving technology and social media. What worked 10 years ago is not working as well now. And it’s good to see that our work is organically falling into place with the current times.

You are on your way to releasing your new single Kulli, tell us a bit about that.

Kenzani: Kulli has been our most awaited track since its preview in 2020 for Oscillate India. It is the only track of ours that has got fans and listeners to write us over a thousand messages on social media asking for its release date! It has been a part of every live set and we are excited to finally drop the single on June 22.

Tech Panda: We also have a few collaboration projects with some homegrown talent as well as international stars. You can expect lots of new music in 2023!

Kulli and Sunflower streaming on all platforms.

Twitter: @muskankhullar03

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