A paradoxically joyful celebration of the human condition under duress

The F16’s have been dominating India’s music scene for over a decade, developing their own unique brand of eccentric and danceable alt-pop. Deemed an ‘artist to watch by Rolling Stone early in their career, the F16’s have held up to the high expectations, becoming a mainstay at major festivals and venues across the country.

After two EP’s and a full-length, the four-piece return in 2021 with their EP ‘Is It Time To Eat The Rich Yet?’ and lead single ‘I’m On Holiday’, out August 11th via House Arrest Distribution. The project is a paradoxically joyful celebration of the human condition under duress, scored by some of the finest pop music India has to offer.

‘I’m On Holiday’ kicks off the EP with grooving guitar melodies and dreamy nostalgic synths, forming a vibrant and rich psychedelic aesthetic upon which perch Josh Fernandez’s smooth, captivating vocals. The lyrics explore the effect of isolation we all experienced over the past year, losing your sense of time and perspective on reality, but with The F16’s signature lyrical wit, ‘I’m On Holiday Forever…’. The perfect track for a lazy summer afternoon, ‘I’m On Holiday’ is a truly memorable and wholly unique indie pop gem.

Following up from their ‘WKND FRNDS’ EP in 2019, ‘Is It Time To Eat The Rich Yet?’ looks to take The F16’s to the furthest reaches of their influences. When the world was in lockdown the group holed up to write and record their EP, moving in together and bringing Harshan Radhakrishnan’s studio with them. Starting each day of the EPs production listening to Frank Sinatra and classic jazz tracks is an influence that shines through in the nostalgic groove and skilful brass arrangements on songs like ‘I’m In Trouble’ and ‘Apocalypse’. Throughout the day the four would listen to a varied mix of genres from psych-rock to post-punk to trap music, with artists like Vince Staples and The Strokes on repeat, accounting for the diverse eclecticism of the record.

Although at its core, this EP is a feat of escapism – it reflects the fact that we can no longer remain oblivious to the social, environmental, and political injustices that plague our society. The F16’s see 2020 as a year for the ‘awakening of the oppressed, especially in their home country of India where the pandemic magnified the stark inequalities between the oppressed working classes and the greed, negligence and rash decisions of those higher up. The ‘swimming pool and a yacht’ reality of their previous EP, ‘WKND FRNDS’, has been completely shattered.

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