With ‘Kaal Ke Pukaar,’ Raaj Showcases His Resolute Nature & The Aggressive Essence Of His Artistic Vision

Hip-Hop culture has always been about being authentic and unfabricated in all aspects. The genre itself serves as a form of art one can utilize to convey their thoughts, feelings or narrate an incident if need be. Rage Hip-Hop and Gangsta rap have a lot in common, mostly being a sub-genre about presenting yourself as powerful and violent too, in some cases.

However, Raaj’s “Kaal Ke Pukaar” is a fresher concept while being relevant to Rage or Gangsta Rap. It is aggressive but all for the right reasons, rather than unnecessarily bragging about being a big deal, he answers back to the ones who think too less of him seeing his regional background. Released on the 10th of July, the album features 8 tracks including an intro and a skit. The Sasaram-born Jamshedpur-based rapper can be seen rapping his heart out in belligerence while he talks about life in his area, the potential they have, and how proud he is of being from Bihar.

The Cover art of “Kaal Ke Pukaar” designed by (thetribal_kid)

Everything, from the cover art to the sound and the lyrics, projects aggressiveness. The aggressiveness is intended to achieve it all and prove people wrong. He raps about how classists behave with his people, the discrimination Biharis feel and his determination to be the best and represent his community. “Jha Ji(Skit)” features the voice of Kat Jr., a fellow Hip-Hop artist, who rants about the atrocities he has faced being a Bihari, and how he is still persistent towards working on his art and changing things through his art. Raaj’s style remains the same throughout the album; he intends to deliver an effect that makes the doubters reconsider. While his rhyme schemes are simple, his hostile flow carries the vocals of the album.

Sonically, the album poses a refreshing version of grime sound. Produced by Sampliyaha, Harxhit, and Laudrup, the album has features from Harass and Arj Aman apart from a skit by Kat Jr. The overall soundscape seems sinister, there are a few mosh-worthy tracks in the album too, especially ‘Ka Marde’. Simple samples with drums and well-structured elements contribute towards delivering a fierce experience.

“Kaal Ke Pukaar”, Raaj’s sophomore album, sees him curate a project in Bhojpuri for the first time. This is also his first project completely created in the grime genre. His past works, including Ginti with MC Kode and Inquilab with Sez on the Beat are quite different from his musicality on this album, hence this piece speaks of his versatility too. Overall, “Kaal Ke Pukaar” is a callout to all the people who look down upon the people from the Bihar-Jharkhand belt, and a testament to the artistic caliber they have.

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Dhanji Celebrates Newness And Sonic Diversity With His Much-Anticipated Debut LP “Ruab”

“abru is extrinsic
ruab on the contrary
ruab is intrinsic”

RVAB – Dhanji

With the end of pre-Ruab, and what might be considered as one of the most revered album rollouts in the underground/alternate Hip-Hop scene, Ruab, released on the 8th of August, is undoubtedly the most anticipated non-mainstream project of this year. Dhanji has been teasing the album for a couple of years now, but according to the artist himself, it has been in the making since he was aware of it. Running for a quarter to an hour, the album features 11 tracks.

Personally, I found Ruab as an acknowledgment of Dhanji’s artistry and an ode to his experiences. Ruab is a very personal project to Dhanji and his core supporters, it is a meticulously arranged collection of tracks whose sounds tell a story of their own. I saw Ruab as a film, a non-generic one, a film that not only has highs and lows, entertaining values, and a turn of events but also contains an underlying meaning that is confined within layers of interpretations. The reason why Ruab will stay close to the audience for years to come is the disparate uniqueness and novelty it brings out.

Thematically, I feel that Ruab talks about money, but not as we perceive it, it poses a question of what should be concerning an artist more. Should one choose to be a sellout, are they an artist anymore? And If one retains his integrity, how long shall they sustain in this game? A lot of instances in the album suggest the debate between Paisa and Shaurat, until “1 Khabri / 2 Numberi’. The track starts with a quarrel between Paisa and Shaurat, Dhanji narrates this story as the scene appears to be set in his imagination. Starting with a coin flip, both perspectives debate over the point of what’s more significant for one. This dispute ends with Paisa proving actual existence in the society, but does this end the age-old debate? I believe, Ruab might give you a perspective of an artist in this dilemma, but to be or not to be, is all up to you.

Ruab also features different aspects of Dhanji’s self. A way to put it is the artist is scattered throughout the album, each track features a story of its own, a different outlook while still incorporating a suggested interpretation. It presents his events in Amdavad, a city so close to him, the album also manages to contrast his artistic persona with real-life nature. I found Ruab as a transition between Jayraj Ganatra to Dhanji and vice versa in a few instances.

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Experience Diya Maeve’s Debut EP ‘For The Lovers’: A Refreshing Alternative Indie Pop Journey

Starting a solo musical journey in 2021, Diya Maeve is out with her debut EP “For The Lovers” with the alternative Indie pop flavor attuned to her aesthetic. The clear inspiration of western music juxtaposed with her Indian classical foundation, reflects in the singer-songwriter’s composition.

With five original pieces up her sleeve, the EP releases on 23rd June this year, with two singles pre-released as a sneak peek into the rhythmic odyssey. True to its namesake, this EP is Diya’s gift to all the lovers and dreamers who face the complexities of love and mend their own selves in the process. The lyrical formation captivates the ear with the delicate melody that dances over the delicious arrangements navigating through themes of self–discovery, love and even overcoming the overall complexities. 

Formulating the exquisite blend of alternative nuances with indie pop sensibilities, Diya poetically crafts her work pushing the listeners into an emotional labyrinth. “Me, You and The Stars” starts with static vulnerability introducing its alluring delicacy, and continues with “Jupiter’s Moon”, instilling a profound connection with her audience. Diya Maeve’s enchanting musical voyage continues with her captivating compositions, “Me, You and The Stars” and “Jupiter’s Moon,” where love’s emotions intertwine with celestial melodies.

In the euphoric embrace of “Me, You and The Stars,” the lyrics delicately weave dreams of a blissful union, accompanied by an acoustic-like introduction that sets the stage for a symphony of romance. The chorus entices the listener to dive deep into the melodies, evoking a longing that emanates a profound sense of joy, resonating with all who have experienced the intoxication of love.

In contrast, “Jupiter’s Moon” explores a more melancholic perspective on love, delving into the depths of longing and separation. The poignant lyrics capture the despair of reminiscing about lost love, while the composition offers a soothing indie tonality that embraces the listener’s emotions. Like a gentle lunar presence, the song envelops the heart with bittersweet melodies that evoke both nostalgia and introspection.

Similar to a story, the next three singles, “Achilles Heel”, “Your Love”, and “On The Other Side Of The Moon” paints vulnerability drawing from raw inspirations. The final track is a poem that begins the endgame of the circle of suffering, yet instills a sense of hope and catharsis within the very core of the listener’s being. 

Indie pop and alternative genres converge in this masterful EP, showcasing a sonic identity that is simultaneously relatable and refreshingly original. Its technicalities, meticulously honed, embrace a diverse range of vocal tonalities and experimental production styles, creating an intimate and organic sonic artwork. Its lyrical depths explore introspective themes, crafting poetic narratives that invite listeners to embark on a deeply personal journey. Owing to the exquisite craftsmanship, “For The Lovers” stands as a resounding triumph and a harbinger of the boundless possibilities of Diya Maeve within the realm of music.

Diya Maeve’s Debut EP “For the Lovers” is Out On 23rd June 2023

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