Metroplus

Offbeat, both sonically and literally

Freak, funk, oddly-timed disco band Run Pussy Run talk about what gets them grooving.

Music lovers in the city were in for some groovy funk treats with the eclectically trippy Run Pussy Run bringing the house down at BFlat. Elaborately flavoursome riffs, colourful harmonies and absolutely brilliant soundscapes marked the concert that saw the city’s revellers getting to their feet and dancing into the night.

A collaboration from Mumbai, Pune and everywhere else, Run Pussy Run comprises singer-songwriter and guitarist Gowri Jayakumar, pianist Behrooz Mihankhah, bassist Anjo John and drummer Abhishek Debsikdar. Guest singer and Bengaluru-based vocalist Maria pitched in for a special song as well.

Having played in Bengaluru just a month back, the band say it’s good to be back. Abhishek points out: “There are great bands in Bangalore. The city is known for them.” Gowri adds: “I used to live here earlier, so I got to lots of gigs.”

Describing their music as freak, funk and oddly-timed disco, Gowri elaborates that it’s their roots. “We love funk. We all studied in S.A.M. Music School in Chennai and we wanted to apply whatever we learnt. At the same time, I’m still a solo singer-songwriter which falls under the freak folk category. So when we all got together, what came out was something freaky and funky. The whole idea was to make people dance but not to a metronome beat. That’s the way we sound.”

The name of the band was inspired by a song of the same name Gowri composed.

“I wrote it when I was feeling like a coward which pussy is a synonym for. That’s pretty much the root of the song. The time we formed the band, everyone in the country were speaking up against rape. It’s not like I wrote the name for the social angle. But yeah, I felt the pussies ought to be running right now.”

Abhishek elaborates that playing in Run Pussy Run is a great experience.

“Gowri writes the songs and puts the words. We add more meaning to the whole thing. Writing good lyrics is important. We make it as groovy as we can.” Anjo adds: “I’ve never played in a band playing more original music than this. We fight a lot though,” he laughs.

Started in February last year, Run Pussy Run disbanded after four gigs but came back together in March, this year to revive their passion. Anjo explains that an evolution is evident. “The song-writing is always new. Our relationship and interaction with each other has gotten better. Looking ahead, it has honestly being Gowri’s vision up to now.” She responds: “But, the fact that they are here shows it’s a combined vision now. They’ve been very supportive.” Anjo pitches in: “I want this band to go on. If we continue to make music for another year, then things will be very different and our music will have progressed.”

What goes into their song-writing process? The band choruses that they’ve now started working on songs together. Gowri adds: “Even otherwise, earlier I would write a song and give it to them, they’ll rip it apart. It automatically becomes their song since they are contributing to it. Everyone changes everything. It’s a band that’s got its own space.”

With more and more bands cropping up, Gowri says they are very analogue right now. “But looking around, for bands that use electronic, it is another tool that will help expand our soundscape. People are exposed to more sounds now.” Anjo says that bands using electronic elements in their music shouldn’t let the tool guide them. “Song-writing needs to be pivotal. Electronic needs to be limited to ornamentation.” He adds that it’s easier to make music and become part of the music community now. “But, to gain success may be tougher.” Gowri says that’s a no-go. “We’re doing this only because we love it. The band is a meaningful employment of our time. We barely make money and support varies. Also people get to choose now. They can either go to a DJ set where the focus is on them or to listen to a band where the focus is on stage.”

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Printable version | May 29, 2020 7:26:49 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/freak-funk-oddlytimed-disco-band-run-pussy-run-talk-about-what-gets-them-grooving/article7170712.ece

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