Rajan Shrestha’s moniker originated by superimposing a huge cauliflower on a cow’s head, much like how his influences are a delightful amalgamation between the likes of Tool, Perfect Circle and that of Mathew Herbert and Trent Reznor. His debut effort as Phatcowlee has been making waves in the indie scene for being raw, ethereal and well, cinematic.
Predominantly known as being the bassist of Nepal’s stellar rock outfit, Jindabaad, Rajan first dipped his toes in electronic music production two-three years ago. Having an experience of being a musician for years, along with the confidence stemming from his days as a co-producer and recording engineer, Phatcowlee seemed like a natural metamorphism. He doesn’t see much difference working alone or with a band. Both have their pros and cons. Being in a band and collaborating helped him grow as a musician, but Phatcowlee felt more like an intimate form of self-expression. “Sometimes we need to express ourselves in our unique way and I felt Phatcowlee is that extension of me”, says Rajan.
Released by India’s very own Consolidate records, this EP is really eargasmic. He chose his samples from famous old Nepali films and named the songs after them. Wooed over by the surge of nostalgia he faced while randomly flipping through channels, he record all the samples from the T.V. or YouTube. Even the cover art is from the film ‘Chino’. Terming his genre to be ‘Post Adhunik’ music, this EP is everything you expect it to be. Perfect blend of nostalgia with modern aesthetics.
It’s clear how visual Rajan is as a creative entity. From the EP name to the samples, there’s no doubt that films have influenced him. It should come as no surprise for he happens to be a video editor along with a photographer. So there might be a music video somewhere down the line.
Talking about the lack of a viable ecosystem, Rajan describes the Nepali music scene as, “A bubble which might expand, but won’t burst.” The lack of collaboration along with the dearth of long lasting entities to provide a sturdy platform for young artists seems like the every other day for this scene veteran. Amazed by the response to this EP, Rajan feels that collaboration is where the world is headed. This EP is a testament that in the internet era, you can find fellow creatives and help them out. It just might result in your art being experienced by an entirely new audience.
Photo Credit : Prasiit Sthapit.
With the Sine Valley Festival this October, Rajan has decided to dedicate the rest of the year to his band Jindabaad, however he has already started working on the next album for Phatcowlee. And all we can say is that we can’t wait for his next endeavor!
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