Soundscape: Experiments with electronica

Anhad Khanna’s first tryst with music happened when he was just about six years old. His father introduced him to a Yamaha drum machine that he had with him since he was 18.

Published: 24th June 2022 09:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th June 2022 09:37 AM   |  A+A-

Anhad Khanna

Anhad Khanna.

Express News Service

Anhad Khanna’s first tryst with music happened when he was just about six years old. His father introduced him to a Yamaha drum machine that he had with him since he was 18. “Next thing we knew, I started to make sense out of that vintage analogue machine; I think that is when the love affair with this art form started,” shares the 24-year-old, who recently released an EP titled 'That Love Affair' via Remmah Records, comprising eight tracks. In this interview, the Alaknanda-based artist gets candid about India’s underground electronic music scene and the process of working on his EP. Excerpts…

Tell us about working on That Love Affair.
This EP happened during the end of the second wave of COVID-19. I was super determined to find a sound I could represent as Sublime Sound [his moniker] and the idea was to definitely pin down on a palette that I felt connected with. I always wanted to write UK-inspired left-field electronica. The process included a fair bit of studying, listening, and experimenting until the sounds started to fit well together. All the tunes have some or the other narrative I am writing around. Even if they are instrumental tunes, there is a story in my head which helps me devise a plan for the kind of sonic decisions I want to take.

For the track Now We Are, you have collaborated with Switzerland-based artist Ellivia. What was the experience like?
Working with Ellivia was pure bliss to say the least. Her skill, work ethic, and talent is amazing, and our musical bond has grown deeper ever since Now We Are happened. Ellivia and I study music together as online students—we just finished our sophomore year at Point Blank Music School, London. Her ability to song write and mould her artistry in different contexts is her super power.

It is generally believed that electronic music—especially instrumental tracks—lacks real depth or emotion. Would you say you have tried to break that notion?
This general belief definitely needs to break away, and I think with time, things are changing. The power of electronic music goes way beyond the generic understanding of what emotional connections are, and its exploration is far deeper than what most people conform to when it comes to identifying real depth in something. With this EP, I wanted to make euphoric, emotive, and driving musical decisions. My idea was to write the kind of left-field club music that instantly triggers a strong emotional vibe on the dance floor, almost as if the tunes are a catalyst to help people feel whatever they are feeling in a stronger way… and I hope I have managed to do that. If not on this record, my practice will continue to achieve that one day.

What are your thoughts about the homegrown underground electronic music scene?
The underground electronic music scene in India is thriving at the moment. Many artists and communities have the right understanding of what the true meaning of alternate arts is, and are pushing it from that mindset. But there also exists a whole other side where many people involved in this space—be it the audience, or the artists, or the party throwers—are chasing just a simple Instagram moment, and that is where they draw the line. Underground electronic music was always about innovation, not conforming to the system, exploring deeper realms of expression, and most of all building united communities that represent a movement.

‘That Love Affair’ by Sublime  Sound is streaming on all leading platforms.


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