3D Images of Music

Delhi-based audiovisual ensemble BLOT!’s debut album Snafu is a departure from their earlier techno sound and is accompanied by 3D visuals

Written by Zaira Arslan | Published: September 8, 2012 1:53:08 am

Delhi-based audiovisual ensemble BLOT!’s debut album Snafu is a departure from their earlier techno sound and is accompanied by 3D visuals

Ever since BLOT! (an acronym that stands for Basic Love of Things) announced the release of their debut album,Snafu,there’s been a lot of talk surrounding the record. Essentially the country’s first live performance audiovisual ensemble,BLOT! comprises Avinash Kumar,a designer,visual artist and VJ,and Gaurav Malaker,a DJ and producer. The two have been making music together for about five years now. During this time,they have performed in various parts of the world with a number of artistes,and made music that has been eclectic,to say the least,and in the process,gained fans everywhere.

The one thing they hadn’t done till now,however,was release an album. That,however,changes with Snafu. The word,interestingly,is an acronym originally used in the military and stands for ‘Situation Normal,All F***ed Up’. A new visual set accompanies the music on the album,parts of which are in 3D,a first for the band. Currently on tour across the country in support of the album,the Delhi-based duo will play in Mumbai on September 8 at Blue Frog,Lower Parel.

The band released previews of some of the tracks from the album online,a few days before the tour began,and most noticeable was how much their sound appears to have changed. In the last few years,BLOT! has experimented a great deal with their music,playing a combination of techno,intelligent dance music (IDM) and electro. But it was hugely techno-driven. In Snafu,however,there’s a whole lot more.

“The album is a mix of diverse styles,” says Malaker,adding,“Essentially,there’s a mix of future pop sounds,techno (of course),some lo fi and chill out electronica. It’s pretty different,since most of our work in the past has been restricted to techno.” The artistes they have chosen to collaborate with on the album also bring in genres of music different from those they have worked with in the past. Vasundhara Vidalur of Adil and Vasundhara — who plays jazz,funk and RnB — lends melodious vocals to a track titled NDX. Another song,Tatemae,features Suryakant Sawhney of Peter Cat Recording Co,giving it a folksy touch.

Changing their sound to this extent was not,however,a conscious decision. “The decisions on the album are not shaped by a deliberate attempt to create melodic,organic or darker sounds. It’s just what flowed out in the last months spent making this album,and we prefer it that way,” says Kumar.

The visuals,on the other hand,are not a stark departure from what they have done in the past,but definitely suggest growth and experimentation. The addition of some 3D content is proof of that. “We’ve been working on developing self-produced stereoscopic content for a while and it’s an extremely arduous and time-consuming process,” says Malaker. “It’s really exciting when you realise you can produce something that is magical and has nostalgic value,” he concludes.

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