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Anoushka Maskey – Empire of Fear is Smooth: Score Indie Reviews

Reviewer Rating:

Anoushka Maskey is a lyrics-first singer-songwriter, who shuffles between Sikkim and Mumbai.  Her sound, as well as songwriting, connotes a warm; nostalgic feel. With her roots set in folk music and a fondness for storytelling, you will find her work to be a great representation of the two.

Her debut EP Things I Saw in a Dream” was released in August 2020. It was inspired by the events during the lockdown period. She explored the themes of “skin hunger” and the value of touch; appreciating the little things in life we often forget to value.

Her 2nd EP C.E.A.S.E. is a commentary on humankind’s sorry dispositions, through a fictional narrative of an apocalyptic world. The EP is a collaboration with Pranay Bakshi, who also produces/engineers her music. September Embers, which released in November 2020 is about people who make a habit of constantly giving, despite it being at the cost of their own well being.

Her latest release, Empire of Fear has been different from all previous projects that were recorded and produced at home. As part of a pan-India singer-songwriter contest hosted by Compassbox Studio & OKListen, Anoushka got the opportunity to translate a simple song written with just acoustic guitar and vocals, into a full blown live studio session.

Produced, arranged and mixed by Compass Box Studio in their signature one take, live recording style the song features: Chirag Todi on guitar, Raag Sethi on the upright bass, Divyang Arora on Drums, Protyay Chakraborty on Violin / Vocals and Harmish Joshi on Trumpet.

Written during the lockdown period, the song is inspired by the dilemma of wanting to stay updated with the news and everything happening in the world and in your personal life, while also wanting to detach from it and try to stay sane. The version of Empire of Fear features Chirag Todi on guitar, Raag Sethi on upright bass, Divyang Arora on drums, Protyay Chakraborty on Violin and Harmish Joshi on the clarinet. 

Musically, the track is built on a foundation of light beat patterns and beautiful melodies. Empire of Fear is remarkable for its steady progression and effortless shifts into new sections, and the song’s melody seeps through the light and breezy atmosphere and provides us with moments of brilliant clarity.

Anoushka Maskey’s distinctive vocal styling is very calm and soothing for all kinds of listeners. The distinctive airy delivery floating on a cloud of beautiful instrumentation makes this track truly stand out from Anoushka Maskey’s other work, and the sentimental tone adds an extra layer to the creative depth, something she has always had in abundance. It’s a great addition to her small but stunning catalogue of songs.

Verdict: Smooth as Silk.

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