Animesh Raval is part of a new breed of singer-songwriters combining great musicianship with great songs. Classically trained in piano, his distinctive playing style and love of classical music creates a rare depth to his songwriting: beautiful melodies woven together with poignant lyrics.
Animesh credits renowned vocal coach Tona de Brett with helping him establish his identity as story-teller, “She explained to me that when you sing you don’t hold your breath, you give your breath. Singing should be an exchange, it’s about giving to the audience, it’s not about you. As singers we should be leading the audience on a journey which starts when the first note is played through to the silence that lingers at the end”. Animesh goes on to say, “the songs I write hopefully reflect where I was coming from at the time, but I also want to leave room for the listener to draw their own interpretations, and leave them with something that resonates with similar experiences they’ve had in their own lives”.
The Song Writing Process
In describing his approach to songwriting Animesh admits, “Most key themes like love, loss, politics, betrayal and anger have been done already so it’s not like I can invent new subjects to talk about. Taking Adele as an example, what I love about her is that she takes a common theme like losing someone you love, reinterprets it and translates that into raw emotion. In listening to her we feel like we’re going on that journey with her. This is something I hope I bring to my songs. If I can convey how I truly felt at the time to the listener and they feel like they’re there with me, I’ve done my job”.
Animesh Raval believes that a new era for the music industry, and particularly for British artists has arrived, “People who genuinely love music know when they’ve been duped. They know when a song has been written purely to sell records because there is no recognizable truth and it feels kind of superficial. Of course one of the many purposes of music is to entertain, we don’t want to be bombarded with doom and gloom all the time, so there needs to be a balance. However it’s important to have a voice and a message”.
When talking about his musical interests Animesh describes a diverse group of influences that helped him develop a love of melody we see reflected in his music ranging from the great romantic composers like Rachmaninov, Tchaikovsky, Chopin and Beethoven to Radiohead, Muse, Massive Attack, Jeff Buckley and Adele.
In describing what differentiates him from other artists Animesh says, “We don’t have that many singer-songwriters in the UK with an epic British rock sound. My sound is centred around a great band with me leading from the piano. Also the songs I write are typically quite epic which calls for big full arrangements”.
His distinctive voice has draw parallels with Thom Yorke, Matt Bellamy and Rufus Wainwright. When asked about this Animesh says, “To be honest, those guys as giants of the music industry, so I’m slightly embarrassed to hear my name mentioned in the same sentence as them. I’ve always been self-conscious about my own voice, and previously have struggled listening back to myself. But working with Tona helped me get comfortable and just to enjoy singing. It’s a real privilege for me to be able to sing and have people listen, so I’ll just enjoy it as long as it lasts”.
2012 is set to be a big year for Animesh Raval. The eagerly anticipated release of his new EP “Stars” is due out later this year and Animesh will have a busy production schedule of music videos and showcases to support the release. Stay tuned to see where you can see Animesh Raval live.