Just a few weeks back, Utsavi Jha had provided her vocals for the Max Kate track Weekend. Contrasting with the feel-good vibes of Weekend, her new single Picnic offers darker and more personal insights into the singer’s mind.
The lockdown had been productive for many singer-songwriters to confront their fears and solitude. This confrontation then leads to some thought-provoking, emotion-driven music. The driving theme of Picnic is human to fear. Jha seems to believe that situations like the pandemic monger fear. These fears, colossal or minuscule, vary from person to person and might frustrate them. Hence, as the song seems to denote, such a fearful life can be a suffocating experience rather than just a merry picnic.
The chorus sums up the mood swings, as the songstress sings in one breath, ‘I wanna dance’ and ‘I wanna cry’. Despite the somewhat bittersweet lyrics, the backing track actually sounds motivational and energetic.
The word ‘picnic’ might make the audience stereotype the song as a positive, sunny track composed on the uke. But Picnic turns out to be a power-ballad at its core, bearing classic tropes of blues-rock.
Jha’s vocals are equally rousing and impactful, gelling well with Jason D’Souza’s production. D’Souza and Jha are perfect as a duo but Picnic is taken a notch higher, courtesy of Anurag Kamle’s saxophone. This is true especially when the song nears its third act.
Around the same time, Utsavi Jha’s vocal stretches serve as a perfect battle cry towards the end. It’s almost as if the listeners can hear her transform by the last minute as if she has finally found the impulses to get over her fears for the good. Picnic is an emotional song but rather than just dwelling on one sad note, the song presents a transition of moods and energies.
Verdict: A power-packed and somewhat relatable anthem for anyone struggling with their fears.