Few bands these days focus on the melodies of the voice as most songs have become beat-centric with the rise of genres like Electronic music.
As we find many songs focusing on a chorus and not the voice of the artists, it becomes hard to find an independent music act that focuses on the throat as an instrument.
One such vocal-centric ensemble in the Capital of India is The Manta Sidhu Ensemble, which released its debut album comprising five songs and two singles last year. With its soulful sound, fuelled by raw and organic oohs and aahs reminiscent of Acapella groups from YouTube is a calming melodious breather from the typical five-piece band consisting of voice, keys, drums, bass, and guitar sounds.
All about that bass
This unique sound was a priority for the band’s namesake, Manta Sidhu when she started getting the ensemble together.
The singers act as the main instrument as opposed to a piano or the guitar in the ensemble which consists of singers with the knowledge of harmony, namely Jazmine and Sherry Matthews, making it the ideal combination of male and female voices alongside Sidhu. For the rhythm section, she got Reuben Narain on drums who was closely involved in her songwriting process.
Her original songs can be best described as dreamy and a derivative of her personal experiences even as the other members give her inputs in terms of the melodies and rhythm.
I first heard her at a Sofar Sounds Delhi NCR show where she was accompanied by multiple instruments and people who played the flute, synth, drums and so on which added to the different voices that made up the music that left reverberating in your memory.
The ensemble has played at multiple venues across Delhi including house concerts and the indie-favorite The Piano Man Jazz Club. All that’s left to see is when they will release an EP which will be the true test of translating their beautiful live sound in a physical/ digital album.