Culture & Arts
Nepali artists collaborate with Indian record label for new albumPrasidha Yonzon and Ranzen Jha, among tens of other artists from different countries, are collaborating with Krunk Kulture to promote electronic musicians from Asia.
Yonzon’s latest track is part of the album Kala Khatta – Flavours from the East, an album produced by the Indian record label company Krunk Kulture that features the works of 15 indie electronic artists from Nepal, India and Japan.
“I was working on a track for my second EP when I got asked if I would be interested to produce one for them,” says Yonzon, who has been producing songs under his musical alias YNZN.P for the past five years. “Krunk has always been honest in promoting the type of music I do which is why saying yes was a no brainer.”
Yonzon first met people from Krunk Kulture during his India tour. Krunk Kulture is a record label started by Krunk, one of India’s premier electronic live music agencies which was established in 2009.
“This album is a result of 12 years of hard work. They’ve done a great job for many music producers in India. I feel proud to be a part of it,” he says.
He’s not the only Nepali producer who is part of this collaboration. Ranzen Jha, a prominent name in the independent Nepali electronic music scene, has also submitted a track to Krunk Kulture for their second compilation, which will be out in a few months. Jha’s music is influenced by Drum and Bass and breakbeat music.
“I’ve known these guys for a while. When I was asked to be part of their project, I was stoked,” says Jha.
Both Jha and Yonzon are not new names to Krunk, nor is the Nepali electronic music scene. Krunk and Krunk Kulture’s founder Sohail Arora says he’s been keeping a close eye on the alternative electronic music scene in Nepal for a few years. He’s been coming to Nepal, curating shows and bringing artists since 2011 working with Nepali companies like kgarira and eleven11.
“I’ve been coming to Nepal and doing shows for some time now. The thirst for a new type of independent electronic music is slowly gaining traction there and I hope this paves way for many more bedroom producers to come out,” says Arora.
That is how he met with Jha and Yonzon “I’ve known Ranzen for a while now. He’s been part of our crew and has always played at our gigs,” says Arora. “His drum and bass work is very neat. He’s always stood out with his tracks and will be on the second compilation which will be released in a few months’ time.”
Yonzon on the other hand had only met with Arora a few years ago during his India tour. But Arora says that he instantly became a fan of his work.
“He’s a very good producer,” says Arora. “Ever since we began, we’ve always promoted the type of music YNZN.P puts out. He’s on the same level with the producers we work with.”
The 15 tracks in the recently launched album have some relaxed tracks with seminal touch and every track has something Asian about it, but it’s subtle and not in your face which makes it an interesting and a diverse album. Vivid Drmz by Shillong-based producer duo adL x kly is upbeat and rhythmic, while Took a Minute by New York-based DJ, SUCHI, is more relaxed and sombre.
“That’s what we’ve always been pushing to do. Put music that is not generic out there for people to listen to,” says Arora. “But through this label and the album we want to do more.”
By more he meant market the Indian artists who are associated with Krunk in Nepal and other countries while also promoting talents from across Asia. He says his long-term aim is to make sure producers like Yonzon are known globally.
“I know how tough it is for producers in Asia,” he says. "That is why we're doing such collaborations."
Rishavh Shrestha from Spektrum, a musical venture dedicated to introducing different electronic music genres to Nepali ears, believes that such collaborations may pave the way for younger producers in the future.
“We have a lot of bedroom producers here in Nepal and I know many don’t have the motivation to produce unique sounds because there isn’t a good platform. The little there is, it might just be the push they needed,” says Shrestha, who manages both Yonzon and Jha. “If you see a Nepali independent artists being appreciated, you’ve bound to be motivated to push yourself and create good music.”
Even Yonzon feels the same way. “This is great for global exposure. These guys at Krunk have a lot of experience and know how to market things. The fact that they waited so long to start a label tells you how serious they are,” says Yonzon.