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With Duur, Kamakshi Khanna forays into a space of darkness that is liberating

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With Duur, Kamakshi Khanna forays into a space of darkness that is liberating

Vijayalakshmi Narayanan

In 2014, came an EP titled, 'Much Mellow' which brimmed of Kamakshi Khanna's promising talent. Following a reality TV stint as a contestant on the English singing reality show, 'The Stage', Kamakshi continued her musical endeavor with 'Cakewalk', her debut album in 2017. But with her lockdown release, 'Qareeb', the New Delhi-based singer/songwriter tasted unprecedented success and popularity.

The subsequent music video and social media reception that followed put Kamakshi in the league of young, accomplished Indian artistes with 'Qareeb' clocking over a million views alongwith eight hundred thousand plus streams on leading music portals.

This summer, the young artiste combines forces with some of the finest Indian independent talents to give us a song that possesses of a haunting, plaintive melody but allows its listeners to rediscover their true beings. About detachment and disillusion, Kamakshi goes for the unexplored in 'Duur'.

The song was first conceived back in 2017 as a brief chorus which Kamakshi gently shrugged off as a part of her compilation of unused voice demos. For long, the melody kept revisiting her but she could not think of a verse that could accompany it. Imagination worked its way on a rainy evening and Kamakshi discovered a brief idea on how would she present this melody, with a little help from her parents.

A house gig in Pune brought her to acquaint with Sameer Rahat, the virtuoso of words and verses, who'd eventually agree to lend Hindi lyrics to the composition. As a performer, Kamakshi admits that despite being well-versed with the language, songwriting in Hindi wasn't particularly her forte. In such a case, Rahat coming on-board is a huge stimulus to 'Duur'. In Kamakshi words, 'I am so grateful to have delved into co-writing my own music for the first time with a genius like Sameer.'

A raw guitar demo sent by Kamakshi to Ahmedabad bred-Mumbai-based producer Kabeer Kathpalia aka OAFF resulted in a masterfully-produced tune that suitably compliments the verses. Mumbai-based drummer Karun Kannampilly of The Koniac Net and Dino Siren fame further lent stellar drumwork to give us a fulfilling composition.

The ethos of 'Duur' have been perfectly captured in its music video by visual artist Arsh Grewal, who teams up with Kamakshi again after 'Qareeb'. While the earlier song's music video featured brighter, peppier visuals, 'Duur' is envisioned in a black and white setting which is entirely DIY and essays the darker, hollower side of human emotion. As the music video has crossed over a lakh views within a fortnight of its premiere, Kamakshi aims at putting out its behind-the-scenes trivia very soon.

'Duur' unearths a new layer in Kamakshi's musicality. A side where she is willing to explore uncharted territories and conquer them as accomplished voices do.

You can now stream 'Duur' on Radio City Freedom and across leading music portals.

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