It’s not unusual for a band to make up a blend of different genres while trying to create something glamorous, a melody or a rhythm while workshopping a song. Catastrophic Disintegration have just pulled one off a masterpiece of an album, with crushing inlaid music and meaningful lyricism. “Aaina” is their full length album that they have released, an album that’s liberating in many ways, not limiting description and expressions. The music and songs define the rest, with the band letting their emotions out through them.
It’s fitting that for an Indian rock band to come up with an amalgamation, that has Indian music elements alloyed into a song. That’s exactly what they have done with their latest album. The album is 8 tracks long, and encompasses different themes, exploring different ideas, Everything from power rock ballads such as Aaina and Maut, acoustic laments like Allah Mera, instrumental progressive rock tracks like Grahan, riff-driven hard rock songs like Pradakshinam and Kathputli, and songs that feel like folktales in a modern rock colour such as Banjare and Saavan.
The band attempts to create something unique and beautiful together, which they have succeeded in doing so. The whole bunch have scuffed up to get the pristine finish of their output, bringing in guitars, which I would say are one of the standout instruments with guitar solos and dynamic rhythms, drums to complement making the songs more heavier, punchy and strong bass lines, powerful vocals to go with. Everything weaved well to make the concoction sound as one. They have experimented with different time signatures which gives their song the element of surprises as you listen.
“The album talks about life from varied perspectives, from introspective lyrics talking about the trials and tribulations of everyday life and finding the courage to move forward no matter what, to commentary on the greed, lust and corruption that drives human beings’ desires”, says the band. They go on to add, “Aaina hopes to be a beacon of hope, instructing the listener to escape everyday life and find that little something within yourself that’s worth fighting for, even in the most desolate of times.
The album deals with the themes of facing the world alone, with deeply personal lyrics and powerful vocal performances. The music is driven, urgent and has something to say at every point throughout the album. The carnatic lead guitar parts set the solos apart from anything you might have heard before”. The brilliant Kaushik Ramachandran (of Paradigm Shift) got on board as a featured artist and on production as well for bringing life to the vocals throughout the album, with the exception of track 3. Track 3, Pradakshinam, features the sublime Piyush Kapoor of Daira on vocals. Ariel Samson (of Paradigm Shift and Benchmark Studios) has mixed and mastered the entire album to the highest quality.
What makes the release format of Aaina unique is the artwork – while most albums will have one single album cover, all 8 tracks on Aaina feature their own unique artwork, designed around the central theme of each song in great detail by the incredible Sushmita Iyer.
The artwork for each track was designed keeping the lyrics, meaning and feeling behind the song in mind, and is an integral part of the experience of the album, and as such, the album has first been released as 8 separate singles on all platforms – so listeners can take part in the complete Aaina experience as intended. The album format release will follow shortly, with its own specific album cover.
Catastrophic Disintegration have actually managed to identify their potential in themselves creating a new path forward for new young Indian musicians. The band intertwines these grand crescendos and lyrics about everyday life into an emotional calling that is overwhelming. Overall their album “Aaina” is vivid and meaningful with textures of rock, metal and the delicacy of their compositions.