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Debanjan Biswas Shows His Compositional Strength On Debut Song

Mar 15, 04:05pm

‘Sahara’ is a pleasant instrumental piece that showcases Debanjan’s varied skills
 Photo Courtesy: Debanjan Biswas

Mumbai’s Debanjan Biswas has come on the scene with something not many artists go for; a fairly abstract piece of instrumental music that takes no compromises with production, performance and impact. It’s always reasonable to expect something new to have kinks that require ironing out or some elements that might require polishing, but in most cases one can see potential and sense that great things are to come. ‘Sahara’ hits the ground running in all regards.

The song is being accompanied by a short film that he (and director Iman Saha) are planning to send to festivals and so on, so the track in a sense is possibly meant to function as a soundtrack. But Debanjan has ensured that it works on its own. His acoustic guitar lies at the centre of the piece, providing the main melody the song is built around. It’s a quiet and shy tune that leaves a lot of space around it for extra production and orchestral sounds. It would also be remiss to overlook his guitar playing; there are equal amounts of emotion and precision in his performance. The track follows a pretty linear structure. The initial motif presented in the beginning is built on throughout its six minutes. Percussion in the form of a shaker and some handclaps gives the song a sort of toned down and earthy feel. The production and overall arrangement on ‘Sahara’ is handled by Akshay Dabhadkar (ably, one might add) and his input adds a lot to the song, lifting it from just one interesting guitar to something that feels whole. There are trumpets and winds and a few layers of extra orchestration that are responsible for the swells and the more ‘heavy’ moments. Especially compelling is the last third of the track where the whole instrumental range of the track come through at the same time combined with what sounds like an accordion. The feeling of this section is that of something with emotional depth crossed with what one might associate with a country fair or a circus. It’s a pretty interesting combination to have, and the fact that it all sounds homogenous and together helps it immeasurably.



‘Sahara’ has plenty going for it, but there is an unmistakable element of ‘soundtrack-ness’ to it which is pretty clear. For all its musicality and polish, there is something about the song that give the feeling that it is made to accompany something else. Some listeners might be alienated by the song’s willingness to stay in one emotional space or not really progress anywhere because of the same reason. That being said, Debanjan Biswas is on track to make a lot of good music and definitely has all it takes writing-wise, and this song is a pretty big first step. ‘Sahara’ more than stands on its own.



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