“There really isn’t a lot of rock music out there”

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Mumbai St. Cyril Duo. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

After speaking to Mumbai-based musician brothers singer-guitarist Sarthak Karkare and drummer Shashwat Karkare when they launched their new St. Cyril project with lead single “Table For Two” earlier this year, the duo has been relentless with outings. St. Cyril then dropped two more singles – “Trouble” and “Big Bad Wolf” – and is now out again with a double-header. In this interview with Rolling Stone Indiathe group tells us about new tracks, “Twice Over” and “I Got You”, in collaboration with visual artist Mehek Malhotra, live and more.

What has happened in the camp of Saint-Cyrille since the release of “Table For Two”?

Shashwat: Actually, we’ve just been busy writing, writing, and writing. Our whole goal with this project was to write and release regularly. We already have the next songs in place; we are now concentrating on the realization of the project.

Sarthak: A whole lot of work has been done to set up the sound of this project and orient it in a field of rock music that is immediately identifiable, but above all easy to listen to. We come from a school of thought that prioritizes the quality of music over the quality of a particular song on social media. With that in mind, we really focused on building a solid piece of work. We are now at a stage where we want the music to reach more people.

What can you tell us about the two new songs?

Shashwat: The two new songs follow a similar sonic thread. They have a similar starting point, in that we started with the melody of both songs and we followed that common thread. All of the production and writing was focused on the melody and the rhythm that went with it. Anyone who’s heard the tracks talks about a vintage, ’60s nostalgia they feel, but that wasn’t the intention. Of course, the Beatles and Velvet Revolver were our references. But we didn’t intend to write a “vintage title”.

Sarthak: Both songs are part of a larger theme centered on the evolution of love from infatuation to a feeling grounded in the real world and its challenges. We wanted to retain the innocence and thrill that early love brings with it, while avoiding the gravity of cynicism as it develops.

How was the recording and production process?

Shashwat: As with all of our music, the recording process was very straightforward and straightforward. We have always followed a “less is more” policy on this project. We recorded all the instruments from home. This is the first time we’ve worked with Zain Calcuttawala on the mixing and mastering of the tracks. We thought it was the perfect choice and it really perfected the sound we were looking for.

Sarthak: I’m quite a homebody, so we try to record as much as possible from our home studio. We took our time finding the sounds that worked for us, borrowed instruments/mics when we ran low, etc., but we only ever wanted to have fun and recreate some of the magic of rock. music we heard during our student years. We’re both really, really grateful to Zain for grabbing that tonal thread early on and delivering accordingly.

Tell us about the artwork and working with visual artist Mehek Malhotra.

Shashwat: Mehek was a very obvious choice for us. We had been following her work for a while, trying to find the right project to work with her on. Her color palette, style and keen understanding of our goal helped us achieve it. She also has previous experience working with musicians, so she fully understood what we wanted and how we wanted to put together the visual language and story of these two songs.

Sarthak: Working with Mehek was refreshing and airy. It’s really nice to see dedicated creative professionals invested in the work of their clients. This, combined with his exceptional talent, really made our interactions enjoyable and uplifting.

When we were explaining the theme of the songs, Mehek was very drawn to the simplicity of the kind of love we were trying to represent – ​​something very primitive and irresistible, but equally dynamic. Thus, the work of “Twice Over” follows a wire as a means of communication between two people, and the pattern turns into communication through a phone call in the work of “I Got You”. They are, of course, both symbols of a developing romance, but still uncomplicated by modern issues. You will never see a smartphone or a screen in there.

And after?

Shashwat: We take the project live! We wanted to take our time to write enough music to make a set entirely of original songs. When someone comes to see a St. Cyril show, that’s all they should have. We will be announcing shows very soon, so follow our social media for all updates.

Sarthak: We will be performing live and hope to reach as many people as possible with our brand of music. There really isn’t a lot of rock music and if there is, it’s certainly not as noticeable as before. There are other plans in the works, but we’ll share the results when we have something concrete.

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