Saturday, July 28, 2012

Interview: The Koniac Net - @thekoniacnet

On the early morning of April 17, 2012, David Abraham joined our Facebook group submitting to ride the Indie Music Bus™ and wrote this intro: "Hello all, I am an Indie/Alternative artist out of India (yup, that country all the way to the East). Below are the links to my debut album "One Last Monsoon" which I have released under the artist appellation THE KONIAC NET " I was pleasantly surprised by the music and songwriter. The first thing that hit me though was the album artwork, it was beautiful and caught my eye right away. Song after song I liked and told him so in the group. Many fine things have happened since then and we are glad The Koniac Net is aboard the bus! Enjoy our interview with David Abraham conducted by Ced of Independent Music and Media.

Enjoy the new video for: "This Time Around"

It's so great to be chatting with a musician who has so much passion for the independent scene. When did you realize that you wanted to pursue music professionally?

Well, I had initially recorded 2 albums' worth of music demos during my last 2 years in college (2003-2005), but it was predominantly for distribution between friends & family. During 2006, while I was living and working in New York, I decided to get a band together to test out my material (considering feedback, up until then, solely came from people who knew me, and therefore who felt obligated to keep their criticism absolutely positive). It was only after getting recognized by a random gentleman scouter at the Pussycat Lounge in NY (my first gig ever, showcasing original material), and being asked by him to play at CBGB a week or 2 before it was shut down (which, to date, was one of the biggest honors), did I realise that my music had the potential of being recorded, marketed, and heard professionally, outside of my circle of family & friends. It took me a while to get things together, and after a lot of unfortunate and ill-timed bad luck, did I decide to make my first professional album.

You seem to have experimented with a lot of online music outlets (SoundCloud, ReverbNation, etc.). Which ones have worked the best for you so far?

I would have to say Facebook, simply because of its ease in regards to people viewing my posts / updates, and how effortlessly one can get in touch with friends who lend their unconditional support, fans acquired via those very friends, and contacting radio stations, bloggers, and music promoters such as yourself / Indie Music Bus. I know many state how cliche it is to credit Facebook as their #1 source, but it's hard to deny the significant and dominant influence it can have in regards to networking & sharing something as beautiful as music. One of the most sublime results from using Facebook has been meeting a lot of people who promote and share music, not because of its possible monetary value, but because they genuinely love and want to, without expecting something in return.
However, I have found SoundCloud to be a great site to showcase my songs, especially when I need to share my material with radio stations who don't care about formal e-mails and/or introductions, but want to get straight to hearing your music and possibly deeming it worthy for airplay. I have been extremely impressed, and have had great success with BandCamp as well - being able to put my entire album up there, allowing me to either set my own price tag or have fans pay what they want for my album, having all my songs available to stream/be heard in FULL, being able to include complimentary artwork & lyrics with my album when purchased, and more. The amount of freedom BandCamp gives its users is quite exceptional.

Being from India, are you finding more success locally or globally with your music? And how does someone as talented as you, find local success in a genre that is not so traditional to your culture?

Definitely more globally... something I have anticipated for decades. My goal from the very beginning, even before I sat down and thought about recording One Last Monsoon, was to get my music heard internationally first, and then bring/promote it in India. And my objective was not in vain, as I have been fortunate enough to have a lot of the songs off the album played in Germany, the U.S., U.K., France, Australia, Italy, Chile, Belgium, Poland, Canada, Greece, and more.
Although the Indie and Alternative genres are far from being properly recognized and appreciated in India, there ARE small pockets of fans of these sub-genres that have been emerging within Bombay, Bangalore, Delhi, and especially the North East of India. A good example of this is the fact that the members of the Koniac Net, all in their early 20's, are people who appreciate brilliant music by artists like Broken Social Scene, Starfucker, Deftones, People In Planes, etc. I do believe this is a good decade to have released an indie album here in my country: there is great potential for this kind of music being more prominent and established here.

You have said that "One Last Monsoon" is a love letter to the Indie and Alternative genres. Can you explain that comment and give us the process of creating such an incredible collection of songs?

To say that I am an obsessor and lover of music would be an understatement. Ever since I was a kid, music has always taken top priority over anything that I have done in my life. Especially during the 90's, when there was this influx of brilliant music and artists, none of this was even heard of, here in India. I felt like I was the only one paying attention to what was happening during that decade, musically speaking. Music CDs (be it Alternative, heavy metal, or hip hop) were unavailable here. The only way I could repeatedly listen to the music that was being played was by connecting an RCA cable from my tv to my stereo, and recording Headbangers Ball, or Alternative Nation via the Singapore MTV that we got here. I used to only be able to purchase these artists' albums IF my parents or friends headed abroad, which happened once every 2 years. Hence, all these bands / artists/ groups, became far more momentous and personal. Their music gave my life a lot more meaning and worth, and as the years rolled by, it only got stronger and far more influential.
I have no way of personally thanking each and every band that played such a pivotal role in my life (although, thanks to the wonders of the internet, I have been able to keep in touch with & thank a few members of the Jealous Sound, Starfucker, American Princes, etc.), so the only way I can show my appreciation is by creating my own compositions, all of which were influenced by the best of the best in music. For now, it's the only way I can get my "thank you" across.
Regarding the creation process: half the songs on this album were written back between 2000 - 2003 (Maggie, Simple, Divine Submersion, Midnight's Children & Demure), while the other half was written between 2006 - 2010. There is no specific process. Sometimes, while practising or doing guitar exercises, a random riff or melody comes to mind, I record into Pro Tools, label it, and when I have another idea, or am in the mood to work around that riff/melody, I do. There are times when i have a melodic or lyrical idea when I am half asleep (which I simply record on my phone, and transfer later to be worked on). I have had songs that were witten in a day, and those that have taken months. I don't really follow a specific process... I just write what I think is melodically good, and what comes naturally to me, be it any given time of the day. However, occasionally, There ARE some songs that I write as specific tributes to bands I absolutely love. For example: "Anesthetic & the Withdrawal" is my personal tribute to the 90's alternative/shoegaze band SWERVEDRIVER.

Enjoy "Maggie (A Song For Brad)"

It's interesting that you recorded it in your apartment and still captured such a great sound. Who were some other people that you collaborated with on this project?

I was extremely fortunate enough to have been put in touch with my now guitarist/member of our band, Jason D'Souza, by my aunt. He had mixed an album for a local band called Rosemary, and the sound and mix of the album reminded me so much of early Soundgarden. I immediately asked him if he'd mix my album, and that was the beginning of the creation process of One Last Monsoon. 

Our bass player, Adil Kurwa, is a good friend of mine, who was part of a failed attempt at the creation of a completely different band, back in 2009. However, I wanted to have people I knew and respected (as musicians and friends) on this album, so I had him as a guest bass player on the song "Divine Submersion." He loved the album, and so it was easy to get him aboard this project.

I've always believed that a female presence in any of my projects is crucial, especially when it comes to vocals (look at bands like Stars, Broken Social Scene, Metric, etc.). I was hell bent of having a female musician back in NY, and here as well, which is how I got Eden Shyodhi to layer backing vocals on "Midnight's Children" and "Divine Submersion." We are currently in the midst of looking for a female vocalist/musician who would permanently like to be part of our live shows. 

I plan on having more guest musicians for my 2nd album, but that can only be determined once the creation process for that project begins.

Do you have any plans on gracing us with a live show in the U.S. anytime soon?

Absolutely. I am DYING to head back to New York (the States in general) and play there. How could I not, bearing in mind that half the bands that influenced me are American-based! I am currently working on it. Considering that a world tour is an incredibly expensive venture, we are looking for a sponsor, or any kind of way to get ourselves over to your end of the planet. An American tour is at the TOP of my list, right after Germany (only because it was a German station that first played my music, and I would like to show my appreciation by beginning my tour there).

Well, we wish you all the best. Keep up the great work and let us know of any new projects that you have?

I will most definitely do that. And I have to express a tremendous amount of appreciation and thanks to you, Mr. Hargrave, and the entire Indie Music Bus crew for the stupendous volume of support you have provided my music and myself, as well all the Indie bands that have contacted you... it truly is amazing, as it is companies like yours, and people like you, that allow independent musicians such as myself to keep pushing forward with a suitable amount of hope, and an optimistic attitude.
Cheers from my end of the world!
Special thanks to Ced



  1. I like the song. Thanks for sharing it!

  2. Good intervieuw !

  3. Really interesting insight. Thanks

  4. Music is such a tough business - if only musicians could simply focus on their art and not have to worry about marketing. One day!

  5. I was really happy to hear that David said he thinks the presence of a female is important in all his work. Thanks, David!

  6. To all of you who have commented: tremendous thanks! Appreciate all your support & feedback. @Volary: extremely important! A female presence & vocals = a 50% improvement to the overall sound. - David Abraham/THE KONIAC NET

  7. For those of you who might be interested, here is the debut music video:
    the Koniac Net - "This Time Around"

  8. Great Interview & Great New Artist !!!!


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