Apart from the usual indie-pop tracks, this year has had a few interesting instrumental-heavy releases so far. Producer and composer Eashwar Subramaniam is a recent case who dropped his nine-track album Songs from Ether last month.
While listening to the entire tracklist at once might not be everyone’s cup of tea, there is still something for everyone as Subramaniam doesn’t just stick to one sound. The opening track Rememberance has dramatically mellow overtones with the backing violins adding more to the tragic aspect. It is perfectly suited for the closing credits of a movie or a video game. Now, compare that with the final track Carried Away which sounds subtle but is also riddled with an undertone of optimism.
Other standout tracks include Sombre Tuesdays, Blues on a Rainy Day, and Sands of Time, some of which seem to be incorporating calming outdoor sounds. It is for this reason that Songs from Ether is a perfect pick for fans of YouTube music loops such as “Lofi Radio” (only lo-fi in terms of sound not in production) or hour-long mixes of “meditation music”. There is definitely a therapeutic aspect to Subramaniam’s album. It is the perfect music that you can sleep to after having a hectic day. And the album works because at the same time, it brings out its producer’s sound rather than succumbing to generic ideas of “lo-fi” or “meditation music”.
As mentioned earlier, Subramaniam’s music can be a perfect fit for other properties like movies, shows, and games. In fact, it also seems like a realistic possibility as OTT platforms and studios are actively seeking out indie artists (take the case of OAFF’s work on Gehraiyaan).
Verdict: Simply meditative.