Music

Musical takeover

Vishnu Ravindran speaks about artificial intelligence and more in his latest song

A few months ago, Bengaluru-based musician Vishnu Ravindran was watching an interview by comedian Joe Rogan with Elon Musk, where the latter confirms the idea that human civilization will see its apocalyptic conclusion if machines are made at the pace it is now. Musk said machines could overtake us in a short period of time. His solution was to merge humans with AI, so that if the machines decided to wipe us out, they will have to consider destroying themselves. “The problem and the solution inspired me to try and incorporate it into a tune I was working on,” says Vishnu.

However, when he began working on a song, Vishnu decided to channel his opposition to the viability of Musk’s solution. “I feel machines are programmed to troubleshoot problems. That is how we make them. If they are advanced enough, they should be able to find a way to eliminate our being. Hence, sonically and thematically, the song takes the listener to the future as human beings are being wiped out by the very machines they created. The song merges large orchestral arrangements with soaring guitars, bass and drums. With the conclusion of the last verse, the song’s tempo accelerates as an allusion to humans running out of time at a faster and faster rate and finally ends with a big falsetto. All instruments, vocals and song writing were done by me.”

On choosing genres, Vishnu is circumspect. “I believe that as we take up new musical projects, we have to be open to all genres. We are in a sense the children of the song and only a medium through which the song manifests itself. I think we should eliminate any biases towards a particular genre. I make sure to listen to all kinds of music to be able to incorporate them. That could range from experimental rock, funk rock, space rock to ambient and alternative music.”

He adds, " My biggest musical influences are bands that have sustained themselves without creative or commercial compromise for decades. U2, Muse and The killers have all produced music for atleast two decades, reinventing themselves the whole time. They don't have the boundaries of genres impeding their creative process. What is also common among all these bands is that they've had the same members from the beginning. That's real commitment that a lot of musicians tend to lack. Outside of these, my favourites include Talking Heads, Franz Ferdinand, Nirvana and some newer artists like Zella day and Wolf Alice."

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Printable version | Jun 3, 2020 7:19:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/music/vishnu-ravindran-tackles-ai-in-new-song/article26590881.ece

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