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Shubumm Impresses On Accessible Debut

Aug 19, 05:32pm

‘Compared To Nothing’ is an EP that features good ol’ pop balladry

New Delhi singer-songwriter Shubumm doesn’t experiment much on his solid debut, opting to write songs with simplicity, heart, and a poppy bent. ‘Compared To Nothing’ is also three tracks and about ten-eleven minutes long. So what’s to expect? The scene is full of artists who shoot for the moon on their first release, trying out high-concept ideas or filling their first public musical expression with enough instrumentation for three albums. This EP does preceisely none of that and instead focuses on the basics. There’s the simple sonic palate of pop, a good mix, and some good hooks. Does that work? Yes.

You can tell what’s going on from the very beginning of the opening track ‘Out Of Place’. There’s drums, piano and the easiest vocal melody you’re going to find as far as singing along is concerned. The hook is almost achingly early 2000s, and the guitar ‘interlude’ that follows it cements it in that era. ‘Stuck’ is a quiet little guitar-backed tune with a really jaunty, light-hearted vocal delivery that gets a bit breathy during the airy hooks. Obviously, Shubumm is singing about love and relationships, which makes sense; his chosen presentation is almost custom built. And nowhere is this blueprint more emphatically delivered than on the closer ‘Once More’. This is a piano-backed pop ballad that drives home the 2000s influence comprehensively. The melodies, the stabby chords, the really, really simple groove that kicks in around halfway and anchors the impossible-to-ignore verses and choruses; this is classic stuff and you will get it stuck in your head in spite of yourself. In fact, ‘Compared To Nothing’ is that kind of EP. You can’t prevent certain earworms when they’re accessible and nicely executed, and this is very much both things.

Listen here.

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