WYTCHINGS had a chat with Aishani Kochar who features on the forthcoming New Age Noise compilation album premiering via Insta this Thursday night (25 June, 2020).
Aishani’s vast, echoey track ‘Space is a Vacuum’ is #3 on the album, and we can’t wait for you to hear it!
W: Please introduce yourself. 🙂
A: My name is Aishani and I make noise!
W: How did you become part of the New Age Noise community and has it impacted your music-making in any way?
A: I joined New Age Noise when it was still called All Girl Electronic (AGE) – I was fifteen or sixteen at the time and just liked to mess around making beats and writing in my room, and honestly at the time I was super intimidated to really do anything musical publicly but my music teacher in high school recommended I put in an application. NAN really changed how I viewed music production, composition, performance, release – you name it! I went from using, like, GarageBand to being absolutely hooked on Ableton (kudos to the crew at I.C.E) and being with such a cool and diverse group of individuals who all had and still have amazing taste has also expanded what I listen to and appreciate, and therefore make!!
W: For the “New Age Noise: Constellation” compilation, how did you approach interpreting the theme, “Constellation”?
A: I’ve always had a fixation on outer space and astronomy, and it bleeds into every aspect of my life, from music to writing to daydreaming. I produced “space is a vacuum” about two years ago (it’s definitely one of my earlier bits) and I really tapped into cosmic inspiration with, dare I say it, a minimalist approach to this track. Normally, my stuff is a lot longer and more cluttered, but I really wanted to strip it down and lay on that echoing feeling of sensory deprivation – like being in a vacuum.
W: “space is a vacuum” is really beautifully cinematic. As the title suggests, I felt this great calming sense of emptiness. Almost as if something has just risen from a long slumber – like a butterfly emerging from a cocoon. Could you tell us more about the process of building the wondrous sounds for your track?
A: I actually started this track off thinking I was going to put some lyrics over it, but when I started to record vocals I ended up snipping up one of the lyrics – “star eyes” – and really playing around with it until it sounded like something from a dream. Like I said before, since this is one of my earlier sounds it’s pretty sparse, but I really wanted the focus to be on the voice saying “star eyes” over and over again, layering those other sounds on top. Normally I would throw a lot of heavy reverb into such minimal production but once again the focus really is the vocal track. When I was making this track, the show “Hilda” had just come out and I was watching the first episode on Netflix. In the episode, giants haven’t been inhabiting the Earth for a long time, and the last Giant wakes up for the first time in years and it’s all really…light hearted but still a little ominous. I really wanted to tap into that feeling with the whole track – the high-pitched synth that seems to roll across the ears, the fluttering sounds. I wanted it to sort of become a marriage between the land and the sky, if that doesn’t sound too pretentious.
W: How did you settle on naming your track, “space is a vacuum”?
A: This track is actually an introduction of sorts to a larger body of work I’m putting together called “Uncreated”, which is an exploration of the cosmos with reference to Jainism – an ancient religion – and its philosophy regarding the universe. I found it so fascinating that in Jainism, the general belief is that the universe has always been here, and that everything we see around us today has, in some form or another, always been here. It’s very similar to the scientific concept of matter and energy not being created or destroyed, so I named a lot of the tracks accordingly – this one is “space is a vacuum”
W: People often compare space with the ocean. What do you resonate with more and why?
A: I completely understand this comparison! There is so much about the ocean that we don’t know, like an entire cosmos underneath our feet. We’ve all heard that one fact about underwater exploration – 95% of the ocean lies undiscovered. Sonically, they both fascinate me. Those iconic sounds of radio emissions from the planets that NASA released a couple of years ago really fascinate me, and so do those strange, spooky underwater noises that can’t be identified even decades after their recording. In some way, conceptually, they are both so similar. I know life imitates art, but I also think that life imitates life!
W:If your track was a planet, which one would it be and why?
A: Not to sound pretentious, but the planet that they discovered a few years ago, WASP-104b, which absorbs 97% of all light from its star. It sits in the Leo constellation!
W: Why do you make music?
A: I started messing around making beats on my laptop when I was maybe 13 or 14, and I guess it came from appreciating music – that feeling of wanting to make something that triggers the same reaction in you as your favourite song, at first, and then the realisation that making something new and exciting is even better.
W: Let’s build a playlist. Shuffle your music library and list the first five songs.
A: “holy terrain” by FKA twigs, “BITE ME” by Kilo Kish, “Touch Me I’m Going to Scream, Pt. 2” by My Morning Jacket, “Little Dark Age” by MGMT and “Sirens of the Caspian” by Sevdaliza
W: Do you have anything else on the horizon that we should watch out for?
A: I’m working on new music right now! Stay tuned