Overtone is a band known for it’s taste towards Classical Rock. A band which is busy doing gigs lately, youthsparks caught with the bass player and the vocal to discuss about their band.
How did it all begin for Overtone?
The band started off in 2009 with me and a friend of mine name Shovon. We wanted to form an acoustic duo but soon we figured out that it’s not going to work. So, we started looking for other members, which is how we recruited Shafquat as our guitarist. I found Parisa in a club in NSU. I was a member there for about a year and she was trying the piano out. As time went by I came to know that Parisa sings and sings pretty well. So, I approached her and offered her to be our back up vocalist. Meanwhile on the other hand, Shovon left the band as he went abroad and we discovered that we are not finding any proper bassist. That was a point when I decided to pick the bass up for the band. I had my interests on that instrument. So, me and Parisa saved some money up and bought my first bass guitar. Rakat came in a lot later. I came to know about him from my friend, Tilok (Orfred), which is also the time we realized that it is almost impossible to run this band without another guitarist, which is why we welcomed him into our band. This is pretty much how the line up was established.
What musical style does Overtone follow?
We are more into classic rock than anything else, or at least we emphasis on classic rock more. Though at some point the guitar works stay a bit bluesy but nevertheless, our main objective in this band is to make everything we play sound old. When we say “sound old”, we do mean that this is actually the playing style that we prefer. You don’t really need to beef up a specific track with a lot of guitar effects just to make it sound old. There are techniques by which you can do that and we want to show how it is done properly. Our playing dictates whether we will sound old or not. We have two singles up and running now [we do it in gigs]; though they are they are still in the production process. If anyone listens to our singles, they would understand what we do with the track and how we keep it simple and old.
All over these years, all the bands that come up to the scene have male vocals, though there are exceptions. All the classic rock bands out there have male vocals. How do you cope up with this specific genre having a female vocal and how does a female vocal helps here?
If we are not then we certainly are trying to and trying very hard. All of us in this band come from different musical backgrounds and we try to explore music as much as possible. Shafquat and I went a long way into blues, funk and jazz and at times, we try to mix all of them together so that everyone enjoys what we do. So yes, I believe we are trying hard.
Speaking about a female front, it is a question that has been asked frequently as to why a female vocal in a band influenced by classic rock. We think, why not? As musicians, we should stick to our roots but we should never back down from trying out something new. The lyric that she sings might sound very awkward at times, for example in Whole Lotta love, there is this line which goes like, “I want to give you inch of my love”. These may sound very awkward but it still is worth a try. After all, it is the music that matters. It is music which struck the chord in peoples’ mind.
In terms of composition, as we said, our motive in this band is to make everything sound old. There were times when people come up to us and tell us that the riff in Lukuchuri is very generic blues riff. We are okay with it. As long as it sounds old and reminds you of the musical Gods and where the roots are, we are fine with it.
It is a known fact that almost everyone in this band came from different musical perspective. So, how do all of you cope up with the difference?
Whenever we want to cover something, everyone starts to pitch in with their ideas and at times it does get hard for anyone to compromise. Most of the times it is me (Saif) who steps down and let others do their thing but I am grateful to have these 5 people in the band because even though there is an argument, at the end, everyone is understanding enough to act accordingly and even though there is a huge difference in terms of personal influences in the band, we still manage to get our thing right, which I feel gives this group a “band” feeling.
What is Overtone’s take on the music scene?
There are too many bands nowadays and it is getting very hard for music to stay good. The quality is deteriorating very fast. Bands these days do not really care of covering a track perfectly. It seems that they cover just because they have to deliver but they overlook all the small details a track can have, all the small details that make a song perfect. Using this as a fuel, there are organizers who are satisfying their greed. They know that all these bands will want gigs. So, now they are just selling the slots off, raising push-sells all over and making it even worse. I believe it is high time that everyone realize what is happening. Back in the old days we used to have tribute shows and all the bands that used to get up on stage were better than the previous ones. The quality of music was outstanding and we believe, now is the time we start going back to that phase. It is of everyone’s’ best interest that gigs these days have no more than 6 properly sounding quality bands. When everyone can set the benchmark high enough, only then these bands will realize that they need to put in the effort to fetch shows for them and this is actually how they can improve. Doing this, the organizers can benefit as well, because if they emphasize on quality rather than quantity, people are bound to come to shows.
What do you have installed for your fans in the future?
For now we plan to do gigs and work on our singles and make it better. Along with that, we also plan to produce the singles that we have but, we really are not certain about what is ahead of us in the next year or years to come. If Rakat gets to go abroad for his graduation, then it is a big question mark on us then and there. Nevertheless, whatever happens to the band, we will never stop working. May be we will go inactive if Rakat leaves but we will still be working on more tracks and we will be working online; that is not only the case if Rakat leaves, that is something we will do if anyone leaves. We will continue to work and if we can compile 7-8 tracks then we might give a solo album a shot so all of the plans are conditional but we still hope for the best.
Anything for your fans?
It is tremendous to see your support. We couldn’t have asked for anything better. Thank you so much for the love and appreciation you show. We hope to keep up to your expectation.
Click Here to visit Overtone on Facebook
Click Here to visit Youthsparks on Facebook