Week on Week: The VICE India Mixtape
A song for each day of the week, throwing in a mix of new releases and some #throwbacks too—everything from homegrown hip-hop to Bollywood (uh-no?) and K-pop—we gotchyu.
Illustration: Fawaz Dalvi
Attempting to keep up with new releases is exhausting. And the never-ending quest to discover an act before they hit >1000 plays on Bandcamp is all but rewarding. Having given up full-time music writing a little while ago, more often than not I find myself feeling a mix of FOMO and IDGAF about new, local music while compiling my Spotify playlists. With this feature, we (that is I) aim to put together a weekly mixtape—without being (a) judgemental asshole(s).
And this week, I’ve rounded up people I’ve lived with in the past, and people I currently live with, in this goddamn city of Mumbai to share their music reccos; straightfire w/o a doubt.
“Abstractions” by Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith
“When's the last time you bought a cassette? Me? Last month! (I'm still waiting for it to get here—Christmas and New Year’s Eve really don’t play nice with international shipping). Here are some reasons for choosing this, in no particular order. First, I love her music, and this
album song is an electronic music composer at her absolute and absurd best. Second, I hate listening to singles, so this album song is a perfect way to get around that restriction for this list. Third, getting introduced to her music at some point early last year really opened my mind to the possibilities that modern electronic music can offer, specially when using modular synthesisers. Fourth, well, there is no fourth point... go enjoy this song already!”
—Sourya Sen, film editor, audiovisual artist aka Oblique and the-best-dude-ever
“Be Quiet” by Alex Chi
“Stumbling upon the label, apart from the exploration of the genre as a whole, was the most musically-defining moment of 2018 for me. At 160 bpm, this track is frantic, makes you clench your jaw, and yet for some reason, is also a track that I turn to at the end of an exhausting day. The hi-hats, claps and snare are the highlight of the track for me, like the icing on a fluffy kick-drum cake.”
—Dhiman Parekh, spends more time on Soundcloud/Bandcamp than Instagram
“Thinking” by Louis Cole
“Another one of the supremely gifted bastards from the Brainfeeder stables, Louis Cole and his excellent third solo venture might have snuck under the radar a bit for most. But this off-kilter and groovy song is a perfect discovery track, one where he simply does not fake the funk. It's happy, it's funky. Go ahead, make your day (also, that synth stand is goals).”
—Nakul Yadav, Creative Producer, Monk Media and your friend's quiet friend
“Living For Live” by Suicidal Tendencies
"Suicidal Tendencies has always been one of my favourite bands of all time. From the time I heard “Institutionalized” which was released in the ’80s to the stuff they're putting out now... it just blows my mind. And when I heard Dave Lombardo was joining them? Oh! Just, oh!"
—Arun Singh Ravi, Effects Artist and too-punk-for-his-own-damn-good
“(ocean) bloom” by Radiohead and Hans Zimmer
“Sober and dehydrated, trudging through all of day 1, and most of day 2 at Coachella 2012. Waiting for Radiohead to begin, stuck in a sea of tired fans, hours beforehand, missing SBTRKT to get to the front of the crowd. Mind over matter. They open with ‘Bloom’ and the skies above them part. The ceiling tiles split open, lowering into LED screens bringing the crowd to life. My most visceral music memory—and definitely the best live gig I've ever watched. Magical.
Late 2017, right before my first dive at Raja Ampat, I watched the trailer for Blue Planet II with the Radiohead-Hans Zimmer soundtrack. The dive was beautiful, but the current was strong and by our third dive for the day, I was exhausted. Thirty minutes into my dive, I have the soundtrack playing like an earworm in my head and magically again, the skies parting above me, light streaming into the water—watching giant oceanic mantas cross overhead.
This song always unlocks some magical happy energy whenever I hear it.”
“Canal” by RATKING
“It’s a shame Ratking no longer exist. I saw them in 2014, and that show remains one of the best I’ve been to. They were, and individually still are, sharp and witty lyricists with an ear for hype beats. An added nugget of information—the song is about my current neighbourhood, and the field you see in the video is where I play football.”
—Adwait Patil, Freelance writer and editor at DIGG.com, and sir-bust-my-knee-alot
“Private Road” by Bent
“I don’t know how or why I’ve literally just discovered this duo from Nottingham, but I’m fucking glad I did. Their debut, sort of, Programmed To Love has turned my week around in more than one instance. Right from the bizarre intro, to the immersive mid-section, and the calming/dancing outro, has me sold on their title, and makes me feel so peaceful on the most draining, exhausting and hopeless days. “Private Road”, which I’ve shared with a few friends over the last week quite aggressively, is therapeutic and making me believe. In what, you ask? Well, it’s making me believe, and that’s about enough for now.”
—Naman Saraiya, Producer and still-trying-to-make-my-resolutions