Seldom do we come across such collaborations where Hindi Contemporary rock from the South Asian diaspora meets progressive thrash metal from overseas. Music Composer/Singer Varun Rajput’s rock act ‘Antariksh’ has always strived to bridge the gap between connecting to the Indian Hindi speaking listener and progressive rock often fused with funk. This time, the established rock act from New Delhi has decided to kick-start their year with a progressive rock-Carnatic fusion track ‘Quest’, which features the US-born (now residing in Japan) iconic guitarist Marty Friedman, widely known for his tenure as the lead guitarist of American thrash metal band ‘Megadeth’. Marty has played for almost an entire decade alongside the likes of Dave Mustaine & David Ellefson in the 90s, post which he shifted to Japan & has appeared in more than 500 Japanese musical shows.
As the renowned author, J.K Rowling once said, “Destiny is a name often given in retrospect to choices that had dramatic consequences”. It was Rajput’s fate that he got to meet Friedman at Delhi Airport, post the guitarist’s performance at the 2019 edition of Bacardi NH7 Weekender, which instigated the idea to collaborate. ‘Quest’ features Antariksh’s complete line-up which includes Joshua Peter on Keys, Dan Thomas on drums & Shrikant Biswa at guitars. It highlights its classical theme by incorporating a Sitar solo played by Dhruv Bedi, who often plays for the Indian Rock band ‘Parikrama’. The track offers lyricism in both Hindi & English, manifesting the narcissistic traits and the never-ending greed of human beings for power/money which eventually leads them to form an augmented reality of their own.
Amongst the pandemic, 2020 had been a rewarding year for the band, in which they saw the success of their singles ‘Jee Le Zara’, ‘Raahiya’ & ‘Fanaah’. With ‘Quest’, the group aims to push the boundaries like always & get their names etched on the wall of fame representing the burgeoning independent rock scene of our country.
Quest is out now on all the major streaming platforms in digital format, which will also be followed by an animated music video in February.