Of the many bass music producers and composers in the country, there are few that stand out. In the peculiar space of fusing Indian samples and folk instruments with deep bass, 808s and tingling MIDI melodies, every producer is trying to find their niche.
Meet Paranox, a.k.a Parakh Mathur, a trap and bass producer from the city of Bhopal in central India. You’ve probably seen him play at a festival or after party you’ve attended, with sounds aptly fit for a successor of bass and electronic music producers like Nucleya, Sound Avtar and Ritviz. We spoke to Paranox to get some more perspective on music, his life, and the journey he’s been on.
Paranox had known the direction he’d want to take in life at a very young age. “I used to carry cassettes in my hand all the time, and everyone from my house and neighbourhood would call me Cassette Wale Baba. I even joined school with the condition of if my dad bought me a cassette player if I did well!” Even though dadi (his father’s mom) was a tabla player and music teacher, Paranox unfortunately never had the opportunity to see her meet her. He started experimenting with software and DAWs when he was 11 years old. As there weren’t many available YouTube tutorials like the multitude we’d find today, Paranox pretty much figured out everything on his own out of sheer curiosity and the excitement to learn something new. Growing up, he used everything from goofing around on Windows Media Player to Atomix, Virtual DJ, and FL Studio to mix, sample and produce music. One of his creations, apsy trance track Psychedelic Love, aired on an old defunct Butterfly Radio show in London.
He’d always seen himself as someone who doesn’t like to do things the normal way. “I look for ways to be unique instead of following what everyone else in the room is doing, and felt this was mainly why I was drawn to bass music in the first place!” he said. He added how bass music also gives the freedom to experiment and do whatever you want with it, devoid of limitations. “I heard Skrillex’s Scary Monsters & Nice Sprites when I was 15! Skrillex taught me how to break the rules and think outside the box.”
His first two official releases as Paranox were just a week apart in March 2015. Dubstep track Call the Doctor was released via label NoisyDubs, and a week later, single I’m So Gangsta was released as part of the India on Rise Vol. 1 compilation EP by Indian indie label Aaroh Music. The single even made it to #2 on Beatport Hip Hop charts.
Paranox continued with independent releases such as Punjabi Tadka, which premiered on BBC Asian Network in 2017. The song was featured as ‘Track of the Week’. He was also invited by Nucleya to do a guest mix on BBC Asian Network. The journey into music festivals was kicking off, having played pub and festival slots at Sunburn, Vh1 Supersonic, and Enchanted Valley Carnival. He released his EP Bhartiya Bass Party, a combination of thumping bass drops intertwined with Indian folk instrument licks. In 2019, he also released single Ranjha through Zee Music Company featuring Srijan Sharma and singer Tanjina Islam.
Paranox won the Best Electronica Artist at Radio City Freedom Awards 5. He’s been charted on Beatport Top 10s twice, and has been performing at music and college festivals in India and beyond for a few years now. Delving into everything from hip hop and indie pop to bass heavy trap and more, he is set to bring on more collaborations this year with popular and new artists.
When we asked him how the pandemic and making music had been going, he said, “I’ve released 3 songs since (the pandemic began in) March. The time in this Covid-19 lockdown has taught me to get things done with limited resources. Every artist should use this time to finish projects and learn new things. I am making lots of new music in different styles, learning new music production techniques, experimenting with different sounds, and it has been really fun!”
Paranox has also been teaching Music Production online. He offers one on one sessions where he teaches everything production, and shares years of experience with a view of helping new artists. And like most artists, he misses touring and playing festivals! His latest release is an indie pop single is a song that portrays friendship and the unconditional love that dogs have. The single features singer Madhur Khandelwal, and the video follows Paranox and his doggos Oscar and Leo. Watch here:
We look forward to seeing more from Paranox in the near future.
The information in this article is provided by Indian trap and bass music producer Paranox, interviewed exclusively for Ticket Fairy India.