the light shines through the noise and smoke

I always get a bit irritable at the approach of diwali. I think ‘Oh no! another night of noise and smoke.’ This year with the two month old baby I was specially dreading it. And we were invited to someone’s house in the evening for a ‘surprise’ party. The surprise was spoilt by a muppet who smsed the girl who was meant to be surprised, apologising for his absence. Anyhow, it was loud and noisy outside. Kiarna, wasn’t looking too happy and as we drove back home through the dust and the pollution, I was decidedly getting grumpier. Wondering what the scene at my home would be I was very pleasantly surprised. My neighbours had lit a whole bunch of little lamps on their balcony. We had a very irritable 2 month old with us, but my heart suddenly felt a bit peaceful. No noise from these lights. A wisp of smoke. No sparks. No multi-coloured sensory pillorying. Just peaceful light from these lamps. What Diwali is meant to be I’m told.

Somewhere it’s written, ‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.’

that genre thing

I think I’ve finally got it! Everyone’s been trying to identify Thermal and a Quarter‘s genre of music. Mostly we give a cool post modern repartee saying the idea of genre itself is too constricting. But needs must. Especially to an audience which is from all over the world.

so here it is gentle ladies and men!

Thermal and a Quarter the kings of…

Curry Rock

ah yes… well… you may respond


This city is soaked to the core. And inept planning and execution means: clogged drains, no drains, flooded houses, bad roads, stressed out commuters… and the list goes on and on. We’re safe for the moment. But everybody is vulnerable. Nature doesn’t discriminate.

a bit humbled

things work out strangely. I had mentioned before about the RC 20 in the previous post. I’d kind of wanted it, in fact I used the word lust. Today was the day it was to go back to the owner and I went and met him and… (deep breath) he just gave the loop station to me. Whaaat…. He’d prayed about it and decided it was the right thing to do. I feel a bit small and a bit humbled. I hope to do some justice to this act of goodness… Thank you God, and thank you friend…

a borrowed toy

I’ve borrowed a brilliant toy for a few days.

The problem with borrowing is that it ensures the lust, the craving of ownership.

This little Boss RC 20 is really cool. It’s basically a loop station. So I can play a bass line, loop it, then dub some chords on top, loop it and then play a melody on the top of that. It’s quite amazing. On top of that, (no the bass doesn’t go that high) you can reverse the loops, which means you got real cool sounding stuff, coming out of a lowly four-string piece of wood.

I want one. The problem is, a good heart, a strong will, and good teamwork won’t do it. Not without MONEY.

and so I’ll quote my daughter ‘Waaaaah!’

Vocalists wanted

I’m planning to start a new band. I’ve decided the genre is going to be acapella death metal. Since the genre is quite new and rare I shall explain a bit. Death metal is typified by growls, snarls and loud heavy guitars. One death metal song that I remember by a Christian death metal band, (yes, they do exist), goes like this:

(In extreme intensity of voice)

Verse 1:

Verse 2:

Simple little ditty isn’t it? Observing the passage of death to life.

Acapella is a bit more complex. There you have interesting syllabic utterances like
‘shoe-bee’ ‘wah’
with sudden squiggly note production like Whitney Houston or Robert Martin or even Thomas John. The last one is a Malayalee if you haven’t noticed!

Anyhow I plan to merge both the genres and hence acapella death metal. This is my vision of a performance.

5 Long haired vocalists with piercings all over dressed in silky white satin, come on stage moshing (head banging) and clicking their fingers.

The song (an own composition) goes something like this

Verse 1
DEATH! shoo-do wop
SHOO death do wop
oohhh baby
yeah! (the squiggly note bit, a la Robert Martin or Thomas John, (the last one is a Malayalee by the way))

Verse 2
Instrumental solo

Verse 3
love you babe, you’re my sugar, bum-bum-bum
you’re my all in all dobedo

At this point 2 of the vocalists hug each other and start choking each other…

and so on…

All those interested please contact chandybass

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The real Che Guevera

His face is familiar. Staring moodily out from a T-shirt, almost looking through you, seeing everything. Mysterious, intense, passionate… all words that can be used or misused for Che. Che symbolises much: youth, rebellion, revolution, left wing ideology, anti-establishmentarianism, anti-imperialism… all the things that youth find so cool. And though he or his image is being commercially used and sold all over the world against the principles he held so dearly, he is still fascinating.

There’s another face. Older, and probably more well known and yet unknown. No one knows what he looked like. But he stares in a far more intense manner, gazes of extreme suffering, solemnity, power and love. He too spoke against the establishment of his day. He too, is often hijacked for assorted ideology and power games. But his revolution is far more subversive. Like Che, he shouts against injustice. But crucially different, he presents non-violence in bare nakedness. Instead of Che’s beret, he has thorns stuck in his head, a cruel joke…

His revolution is incredibly slow and difficult… but… I would like to be part of his revolution…

what friends do

those who read stupid rock shows will recall that my keyboards got wet. This is the story that occured following that. Our drummer Rajeev escorted the keyboards in his Ford Ikon (not Escort) back to his place. Normally instruments are left in the car for the night before taking it back to the practice place. However since they were wet, it wasn’t the ideal thing. I completely forgot like a dipstick and called up around 10.30 pm. ‘Machcha, please can you take the keyboards into your house and dry them’. The gentleman that he is Rajeev walked down from his apartment to his car. He took the keyboards dutifully and proceeded to walk back sleepily to his apartment. Now comes the crunch. Normally the house key would be on his car key bunch. But they weren’t.

(Switching tenses for effect). So good hearted drummer is stuck out in the rain with two keyboards. But all is not lost. He just needs to hop to his parents place and get the spare key. Clever, organised chap this drummer. So he leaves the keyboards in the porch and quickly reaches his folks place and… they have given all the spare keys to their neighbours and they are not there! Brill! So poor drummer comes back to his place picks up the two keyboards and spends the night at the folks place with the two relatively bemused keyboards.

Next morning work beckons, work items are still stuck at home and the neighbours are back, Phew! But they’re asleep. After waiting till 9 am The Rajagopals try a three pronged attack by

1. calling landline
2. calling mobile
3. banging heavily on the front door


Thankfully it worked. After 25mins.

So keys well that ends well. My keyboards found a dry home, Rajeev got to work, and our friendship is still intact.

What friends do for their friends…