Perfekt Pillows launches debut album 'Imperfektions'

Updated: Jul 31, 2020

Bangalore based Pop Rock band Perfekt Pillows recently released their debut album 'Imperfektions', 7 tracks performed live at Music Mojo on KappaTV. Excerpts from an interview with the band.

The album is available on Spotify.

Perfekt Pillows is a very unique name for a band. How did that happen ?

Well, we started as a bunch of common friends who came together to jam, to understand synergies in our musical tastes and abilities, and when the time came to figure out the band name, our struggles started. As always it was tough to build consensus on a name that fits well and that everyone liked. We gave up and decided to go the Illayaraja way of “What’s in a name?”.

One fine day, when few of us were on a vacation together, Sridhar Ganapathy casually said about the pillow in the hotel room, what a perfect pillow this is, and precisely at that moment all of us looked at each other, as if that AHA moment has come, and then PerfeKt Pillows was born. Another reason it resonated so well was cos of nature of our songs, they all are like that perfect pillow that calms you down, that you need at the end of the day.

You describe yourself, as totally distinct people coming together to create a unique sound. Tell us more about your journey so far?

We are a diverse set of folks from literally the four corners of the country who ended up meeting in Bengaluru. We share the love for one eternal thing in our lives, music, like really good music.

Deepanshu, our drummer is from Jaipur, Shailanchal, the vocalist from Rishikesh, Sridhar Ganapathy from Mumbai on guitars and keys, Amit, the versatile one from Kolkata and is backbone of the band with guitars, keys and entire production under his umbrella and finally our bassist, KP from Kerala. Our music tastes and upbringing are wide and differentiated.

All of us have our day jobs and music is our way of keeping passion and peace alive in our lives. Shailanchal grew up listening to a wide range of music from Kishore Kumar to Bono to Chris Cornell and Myles Kennedy. Sridhar who’s trained on Guitars and keys is a huge Joe Satriani fan (his youtube personal id is JoeSat88) and has his loyalties committed to Porcupine tree and Dream Theater.

Amit is our classic rock guy, GNR, Led zep.. name it and has also worked in the music industry in production. Deepanshu is the uninhibited and most instinctive among us, loves finding new music (regular visitor to major music fests every year) and is also very much into the indie music scene. KP is a trained Carnatic singer, flautist and tried and failed in Percussion :P and is inspired by Tool, Pink Floyd, Snarky Puppy, Illayaraja, Rahman and TM Krishna.

When PP began, we decided not to follow any particular genre knowing well that our music tastes and heritage differed widely. We wanted to bring the best of all of us in the songs we created. We are happy that this kinda reflects in 'ImperfeKtions.' We never wanted to appeal to only a specific type of audience and wanted to be relevant to everyone and anyone who heard us, so glad that we have achieved that so far.

Imperfektions, your album is out. We would like to know more about the songs, genres and the concept of the album?

We have looked forward to this day for a very long time. All of these songs were composed in our formative years, since the day we met for the first time. We kinda grew as a band with these songs. This album is very close to our heart, exactly for this reason.

Few of these songs ('Take a walk' and 'Reason') were composed after the first few days of our meeting, even before we decided to be called a band. All these songs were born out of our quest to learn to learn new techniques and experimentation. All of the songs are independent in their thought process with an underlying central theme of imperfections.

We all are imperfect and this album portrays that really well. 'Zen' is about overthinking, 'Reason' is about validation, 'Take a walk' is about rejections and 'Just saying' is about letting go. We have tried bending genres across by not sticking to a specific style for instance Zen song is more of a funk while Just Saying is traditional ballad.

Now that live performances are almost down to nil, and we know they do play an important part during an album release, how do you manage to keep the buzz alive?

We are a live-first band and for long this live scene has contributed well to our growth so far. It is in these shows we met so many folks who loved us. We were regulars in the Bengaluru music scene and have played at almost every live venue in Bangalore. Yes, it has hit us hard, but we are optimists and believe in the power of positive hope. We have found new ways to sustain the buzz and engagement.

We are using digital streaming channels like Spotify, Apple Music etc. to reach new audiences. In fact, ‘Reason’ just got featured in ‘Rock in India’ an official Spotify playlist, a proud moment for us, days after the album was launched. We are also trying to stay relevant and active on all social media platforms and ensuring to sustain the buzz on a regular basis.

We also have plans regarding a shut-in concert, live on Facebook and Instagram etc. which would help us promote the album. Well, it is important to adapt with the times right ?

How do you see the industry evolving now ? Online streaming, social media live concerts, all at your fingertips.

The advent of streaming media is a paradigm shift in the way people have access to music and perceive it. The days of vinyl isn’t gonna go away, but its audience is limited to a very small subset now. Also the user base is amplified right, the access to these apps and platforms is much more democratic in nature and you now have better chances of finding new music owing to the presence of huge amount of content and intelligent discovery algorithms.

It’s good for the artist since they get to know much more about the demographics of their audience, and it starts to provide an interactive feedback loop for them. The key we feel is to find the right balance for the artist on the way they want to get their content out. For us, the digital streaming media is a welcome addition to the whole music industry.

Copyright societies are asking for online licensing. Industry is abuzz with the news. What's your opinion ?

Copyrights societies in music are the PROs (Performing Rights Organizations) and it is fair to license music to use in the events that are sponsored or/and ticketed, the PROs protect the vested interests of its member composers, authors and member publishers. The license obtained for the usage of a member creator/publisher work is the legal way of protecting and justifying the idea of copyrights.

The fair use of music for events/experiences online is policed by these societies and if the organisers don't obtain any license then it's exploitation of a creators work.

What are the plans for the band in the coming years?

More music, more shows and hopefully more Perfekt Pillows in everyone’s lives. We are constantly working on new content and there are some really good songs which are lined up for release. You will get to see more of us in the coming years :)

Interview by Lakshmi Venugopal