Having enthralled audiences and judges alike through popular TV shows such as The Voice of India, Sa Re Ga Ma Pa and MTV Roadies, Lakshya Bhatnagar has earned a name for himself in the music industry. The Pune based singer-songwriter leads vocals for the band “LAKSHYA” and has also led vocals for projects like Mannfarid & TMKC.
He has written and composed tracks in various genres, ranging from classy Bollywood, Indiepop to contemporary rock. Recently, he has also garnered a fan following of more than 30,000 listeners on Spotify. His debut EP ‘Kal Aaj Aur Kal’ is a nostalgic journey of his entire life through a collection of deeply emotional and meaningful tracks.
The EP has been composed and written by Lakshya, while the entire production has been handled by WhiteWine Studios, Pune. The EP also features Yash Singh (Additional Producer/Mixing Engineer) from WhiteWine Studios, Ankith Sinha (Producer/Arranger/ Keys), Hemant Aligi (Nyasa, Hourglass Inversion) on Bass and Sharad Nirmalkar (Point Break, Chakra) on Guitars. Most of the tracking and recording work has been done under the very able hands of Nitin Muralikrishnan, Chief Audio Engineer at Gray Spark Audio, Pune which is a popular hub for Indie artists. The songs have been seamlessly mastered at Andre Castro Mastering in Portugal.
‘Kal Aaj Aur Kal’ makes one feel cheerful, mellow and nostalgic. Each of the tracks is associated with a particular phase in Lakshya’s life. The music is upbeat and punchy throughout, with slightly mellow and soft tunes in between. All the tracks have a groovy sub-tone. The lyrics elucidate the journey of an artist. There are darker and deeper undertones in terms of instrumentals in some of the tracks that describe a difficult phase in the life of the artist. Even while listening to these melancholic tracks, one can still find themselves feeling energetic, due to the power packed instrumentals. Overall, this album is a great mix of contemporary rock with pop music that everyone can relate to. The blend of genres in this album clearly comes out well and is a musical delight!
The first track “Rooyi” is the happiest of them all, which is actually dedicated to Lakshya’s daughter. This track beautifully captures the immense love that a father has for his daughter, with a sing-along vibe to it. One can instantly find themselves snapping their fingers to the beat of this song.
The second track is called “Mumbai Meri Jaan” which encapsulates the spirit of the Mumbai city and highlights how the city never stops. Lakshya also says that his dream of moving to the ‘Maya Nagari’ has indeed been fulfilled. The track is a hopeful rendition of how the artist had come to the city with a thousand dreams, and he is finally getting to live all of them. The chorus has a catchy beat to it, and the rest of the track describes life in the fast paced city.
The third track is titled “Pari” and explains how the artist was sad and lonely, until he met his significant other. He calls her an angel, who saved him from a dangerous phase. This song is dedicated to his wife. The fourth track is “Kya Woh Tum Thi” which is about one of Lakshya’s past relationship. In his own words, “This track depicts a tale of a toxic relationship that I was in once. A relationship where I was made to hate myself but I still craved for the other person to be in my life. It is probably one of the most intense songs of the EP and a reminder to myself to keep believing in the man in the mirror.” Lakshya’s high pitched notes in the bridge section are striking, along with the poignant electric guitar tunes towards the end.
The fifth track “Raakh” is a personal favourite. Raakh was composed when the artist felt that he was getting trapped due to his addictions. Raakh begins with a soft intro, then slowly picks up its pace to transition into contemporary rock. There’s a visible pattern in the track, it slows down and then picks up its pace again. The drum groove catches one’s attention and makes the track even more captivating. The chorus is definitely the high point of this track, where Lakshya’s vocals and the instrumentals synchronize to give listeners an uplifted feeling.
The track “ College Nahi Jaate The” reminds us of our good old college days, when we led carefree lives. Lyrically, this track is very well written and is quite relatable. It accurately describes our college lives, as the lyrics point out how in those days our morning started at 12 pm, and 9 am lectures were always missed. The instrumentals in the bridge section give off a happy high and leave us missing our college days even more.
In conclusion, this EP is a confluence of emotions, from being grateful, happy, sad and in the end giving us hope that the sun will shine no matter what. With Kal Aaj Aur Kal, emotions and instrumentals both ride high and intertwine with each other, making this EP a perfect listen especially during these trying times when we all need to keep our spirits high.