With Friends Like These is a seven-track indie album by singer-songwriter Jishnu Guha AKA Short Round. Every track aside from the cleverly-named Introvert and Outrovert features other artists, which makes each of them unique while still retaining a common thread throughout the album – Short Round himself, of course.
Jishnu had already begun work on this album weeks after the release of Desperate Times, his debut last year. “I didn’t really have an agenda for the album, it was more of an experiment,” he says, when asked about the concept. “I just wanted to see what would happen. I’m fortunate that I know a lot of other musicians.”
And not just any musicians, but industry favourites like Siddharth Basrur from Goddess Gagged and Saurabh Roy from The Lightyears Explode, and upcoming talents like Mali. Being a huge fan of punk rock, Jishnu has already been playing for The Lightyears Explode for the last couple of their gigs, so he was excited to finally work with Saurabh on their own music.
The process of recording the album was “painfully slow at times”, according to Jishnu, since there were so many artists to co-ordinate with. It also didn’t help that his home studio is right next to a train station, which meant he could only record from midnight to 4 in the morning. But it was all worth it in the end. “I did it my way and I’m happy with it,” he adds.
Picture courtesy of Kadak Apple Records
He’ll get down to playing gigs sometime in May, but right now he’s working on Acoustic Sets, a series of videos that are being released on his Facebook page, one for each of the songs on his album (except Introvert and Outrovert which come together to form one complete song). Shot with a single camera and mic, these videos aim to show what the song is all about in one simple take. He’s also already started writing material for the next album, which you might get a glimpse of at his gigs.
But if you’re looking to go and listen to the songs you’ve become so comfortable with live, Jishnu has other plans. The stripped-down album is going to be studded with different arrangements and electric guitars. “All the songs are going to be bigger live. There’s going to be a lot more to it.” And you can take his word for it; Short Round’s band members are all talented and seasoned musicians, playing for bands like Skyharbor and Spud In The Box.