Band of the month: The F16’s – Score Short Reads
Let’s hit Ctrl+S on this one-to-one with the F16s forever!
Is It Time to Eat the Rich Yet? Relax. I am not talking about a utopian world, but the latest EP
by the Chennai indie rockers F16s that might’ve stirred a certain storm in the music scene.
The F16s have developed their inimitable brand of eccentric and danceable alt-pop. They
fascinatingly, maintain a nostalgic vibe through their indie and alternative routes into styles
of experimental, funk, and jazz.
This month we had this incredible opportunity to chat up with the four-piece band featuring
Abhinav Krishnaswamy, Shashank Manohar, Joshua Fernandez along with Harshan
Radhakrishnan. And here are some juicy tit-bits that we got them to spill!
What does the name F16s mean and where did the inspiration come from?
We’d like to think that the origins of the name are immaterial at this point, but sure – F16-ing is when you meet your friends for a meal but there’s one ‘sandwich’ amongst you. You take a bite and pass it around, salvaging the food till it comes back to you. Also, refer ‘taxiing’.
You have been performing and making music for almost a decade. Looking back now, what was one of your pinch-me-I’m-famous moments?
Anytime we have people singing our songs back to us at full volume during a show.
How did all of you meet and decide to collaborate?
We were all bred on the college competition circuit in Chennai. All of us were in different bands till they melted away and left us together.
Do tell us about your latest gig ‘Is It Time to Eat the Rich, Yet?’ that’s an eclectic mix of songs evoking different emotions and moods. And, what do you love about it?
It took a toll on us to make this, considering the business end of this album came during the pandemic. Cloistered together indoors, distraught and unsure of what the future held, we decided to finish this as an exercise for ourselves in DIY. We love watching the album unfurl and blossom the way it currently is.
How did you discover the winning formula for this EP?
Keep it DIY, simple. From recording and mixing it ourselves, to filming the video and sourcing props for it ourselves. We don’t discount outsider perspective, but this felt like the right way to do things, for this EP at least.
Which is your favourite track from the EP?
We love all of them, but like every Indian parent, it’s the song that takes care of our retirement that we will undoubtedly love the most. “Sucks To Be Human” could be the most accurate distillation of the EP so we’d choose that one.
What’s your process of creating music? Could you break it down or give us a little peek?
We pay close attention to Josh as he sleeps, writing down his incoherent night terrors into legible ideas that we then work on overtime. Jokes, there’s no set way really. Some songs come from a riff or melody, while others have the core idea established while we build around it.
How vital do you think music videos are to amplify the impact of a track?
It did kill the radio star. Visuals are part and parcel of a fully-formed aesthetic that better informs a listener about the band’s vision. Does every song need a video? Probably not, but a good video can do wonders when used for the right song.
You’ve gained immense global cred, you’ve performed at some fabulous destinations around the world, which one has been the most memorable and why?
A backyard show in Brooklyn in 2014 would rank up there. Playing your music live to an audience in a city that has birthed the music you love is a different trip.
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?
And, what’s the one solid piece of advice that you would like to give upcoming non-conventional artists?
Keep going, put your music out as it has never been easier to do that. Even if it’s received badly, it’s out there and you can move on and make more.
What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received about your music or what’s something amazing that your fans have done, that left you speechless?
A wonderful fan of ours made a limited edition run of t-shirts with the four of our faces on it. Another got a tattoo of artwork from WKND FRNDS
If you could have any slogan on your T-shirts, what would it be? / What would the slogan on your T-shirts read?
“Good at living, bad at life” (?) // “Certified Plant-Dad” // “Half-asleep at checkout time”
What’s your favourite ad jingle of all time?
There was this jingle for a bike called Fascino. Perhaps the worst one we’ve heard. It takes a special skill to make a jingle that sucks so hard that it sticks in your brain.
A pet peeve that triggers you.
Used coffee grounds in the machine. EMPTY THAT OUT BEFORE YOU MAKE A NEW BATCH, THANKS
What’s the one super-power you’ve always wanted?
If you could have your pick of any artist in the world, who would you want to work with
Rick Rubin, The Strokes, Kenny Beats
Your favourite 90s/vintage song/album?
’Loveless’ by My Bloody Valentine / Ok Computer by Radiohead / Cher’s ‘Believe’
What’s your favourite pizza topping?
One word each to describe every member of the band.
- Josh: A man
- Harshan: A man but slightly taller
- Sashank: A man but slightly better looking
- Abhinav: Barely a man
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/thef16s/?hl=en