• Sun, Oct 20, 2019
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Watch Prateek Kuhad's New Bright(er) And Happy(ish) Video

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album Reviews Jul 27, 01:43pm

‘with you/for you’ is summery and light, and thank god for that.

When Prateek Kuhad, Indian indie’s forlorn troubadour, released his EP ‘cold/mess’ last year, one thing stood out. It was bleak and sad to the point where it seemed like the songs were literally weighed down by the intensity of the emotions described in them. While it certainly propelled him to critical and commercial successes, there was scope for exploring more hopeful and positive emotional content in future releases. ‘with you/for you’ is precisely that.
The first thing you notice is that production is noticeably clearer and up front. Even though ‘with you/for you’ has precious little in its instrumental bag of tricks to begin with, it makes the most of what it has. There is a simple acoustic guitar backed by muted, almost electronic-sounding drum tones and a couple of synth chords. But as the track builds, a lot of little elements are added to the mix that might not grab your attention by themselves, but together make the song sound full and interesting. There is a cool little piano line that doubles one of the vocal motifs through the track that does a lot of work, there are some twinkly keyboard notes that give the bridge of the song some bounce, and there are violins and organs to lend that nostalgic rom-com vibe to certain parts. All these things stay back in the mix for the most part but they are as important as what grabs primary focus: Prateek’s vocals.

 

 


His muffled, half-murmured vocal delivery has become pretty standard at this point, but on ‘with you/for you’, it gets added clarity because it is pushed right up in front of the backing instrumentation, and this is a great place for it to sit. Melting into the background sounds is never a good idea for lyric-reliant softly sung genres, and he avoids that here. The acoustic guitar and keys that form the core of the song are not elaborate by any means but they grow on you eventually. As Prateek sings about a relationship gone right until it went awry (and does relationship things in a really nicely shot video for the track), the track seems to get more and more hopeful and positive as it goes on. The chorus is catchy and the song is structurally simple enough to not get annoying. But the bridge is where the track makes its mark; the strings, keys and changed vocal lines really bring out all the positive (in the chords) and negative (in the reedy, thin violins) tones in the story told here. While it is not all that much, it manages to produce quite a bit from not very much, and that itself is another step in the right direction. Expect to remember this the next time you watch some classic college romance movie.

 

Watch the video below: 

 

 

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