If you’ve come across a contemporary song but end up rating it on the number of views it gets, you sure are doing it wrong. In an age where the whole music world can be recreated on formula-driven compositions and artificially-enhanced vocals, real music can be quite a treat. For people who are looking, however, there’s always hope.

The word means question mark in Tamil. Just like its name, the band, comprising of a bunch of college students, was born from deeply rooted ideals, aiming to question the real purpose of life with the songs and music they make. Kick-starting in the year 2018, this nine-member band stole the hearts of many in the city during an intercollegiate competition. Specializing in “good music made by good people,” the folks at Kelvikkuri don’t discriminate when it comes to genre. Their music is a colossal collaboration of Jazz, Carnatic, Hindustani, Metal, Funk, Electronica and other genres mélanged to perfection. As versatile as their music, every member in this band has a unique taste/preference in music that makes their story even more interesting.

In order to find success in their field, musicians must create art that differentiates them from the crowd. This is the toughest part; however, these guys have cracked it and appeal to a large audience. I remember, in my early 20s, all I did was aimlessly eat softees, binge on KFC and McDees thinking these were the cool things to do while pursuing my graduation; and here I am today, chatting with two 20-year olds, Ananya Raja and Ranjani Ramadoss, the two lead vocalists of the group sharing insights on how to combat the current environmental nightmare through their song lyrics. Their first original composition — nanguram, meaning anchor in Tamil is a favorite of every member of the group mainly because it speaks of how grounded they are in their principles and beliefs to save the earth. ‘’This particular piece is a validation of the purpose of our lives. It’s what we truly believe in and why we started Kelvikkuri in the first place”, says Allan Varghese — the most fun guy behind the keys and even otherwise.

Rather than doing up-with-solos and instrumentals only, each member has had the space to show their skill; to do Carnatic-style runs, Funk, Jazz, EDM and much more. Whether it is the duo — Christopher and Sanju Alex on the guitars while Dhananjay Venkatesh plays the bass or Amit V Nayak on the mandolin — they are all backed by percussionist Ujwal KS. What also works is the two stupendously gifted technical singers with Broadway-ready crystalline warmth in their voices. The vocalist, Ranjani is also a professional saxophonist who adds an additional bit of sass to the group. Music was something every member has been deeply rooted in from childhood and it is their constant.

As of today, they have successfully launched two of their originals in Tamil and two in English, one in Kannada and Hindi. They plan to explore Malayalam as their next option. They are working towards bringing out an EP by December 2019 and have a series of shows lined up in the coming months.

This Bangalore based group which is a Carnatic-fusion band with its members having their main roots in classical, jazz and funk is managed by a very close confidante of the group, Aditya Veera from Thayir Sadam Blues. Believe it or not! Kelvikkuri also has their very own live artist — Pavi Shankar, whose excellent artwork makes the band experience
pretty unique.
write to us at editor.provoke@paulsons.in