Jwala 011 – Surface

Jwala 011 Surface

One of India’s most exciting new collectives, Jwala has consistently delivered some of the freshest and forward thinking music coming out of the sub-continent since their memorable debut back in 2017. And now following a brief hiatus since the release of their tenth compilation ‘Space‘ earlier this year, they are back in action with their latest release, ‘Surface‘.

A 7-track compilation which stands out in its own unique ways, their latest effort is adorned by productions that have been brought to life using analog synths and gear. Led by tracks courtesy Mumbai-based producer Purva Ashadha and Feugo, New Delhi-based acts Sq. Feet and D80, The Ebullist, 1.5 BHK, Derain and the one and only REProduce bossman Rana Ghose, ‘Surface‘ truly sounds like a mature, more complex body of work which once again turns the spotlight on Jwala’s noteworthy curation of artists and music which needs to be heard.

Having remained frequent collaborators, Purva Ashadha and Feugo’s latest creation ‘Inner Conflicts‘ introduces listeners to the collective’s eleventh compilation as its ribboned melodies steadily take over. With its sparkling, yet impactful sounds which manage to build on the track’s visceral grip, you will soon find yourself transported to the lazy soundscapes of Sq. Feet’s impeccably smooth take on lo-fi hip-hop courtesy ‘Vibin So Fre$h‘. The Ebullist’s striking IDM-inspired composition ‘[[[[VICA]]] T16‘ turns out to be an enthralling journey as a multitude of exciting ideas mold themselves into one single sonic gem throughout its eight minute ride.

Seasoned producer D80 aka Anubhav Sharma makes his Jwala debut with yet another impressive cut, ‘Pin Ball‘ that goes on to showcase the finesse of his craft and somehow follows a playful, yet intriguing approach. Leading into the second half of ‘Surface‘, we get the ruthless and equally outstanding ‘Disco Ball Moon Doll‘ by 1.5 BHK who certainly takes things up a notch with his chaotic piece which weaves up a dense cloud of frenzied analog work, devoid of any naturalistic elements.

For the compilation’s penultimate tune, TAABIIR signee Derain steps up to the plate with his incredibly, soothing creation ‘Sliver Of Hope‘, which makes its presence felt owing to its stripped down approach before a scattered, high frequency noise blankets over the proceedings only for an oddly satisfying sense of peace and hope to be found by listeners. Lastly, Rana Ghose who has been instrumental in providing a noteworthy platform for some of the country’s most obscure, yet extremely talented artists with his REProduce Listening Room sessions which continue to take place all across India, provides a fitting end to the action with ‘Nassau Sutton‘. Highlighted by the harsh, yet rather flamboyant noise, the track paves a super intriguing path for the listeners to find their way through. And once you find you feet within the swamped soundscape, it is only a matter of time before you find yourself grooving to this beastly tune.

Unarguably, one of Jwala’s most memorable compilations till date, it also marks a crucial and important step in the right direction for the collective’s trail which lies ahead of them. Listen to ‘Surface‘ below.