magritte x prateek kuhad

Covert art for Prateek Kuhad’s latest album: cold/mess

Prateek Kuhad is a boon for the indie music landscape in India. His singing-songwriting is melting, pastoral, and at times, a passenger evoking style. A few weeks ago, he released a new album - 'Cold/Mess', and it rendered us breathless. Our SoundCloud screens were a hue of dark blue, the kind only acrylic paints bring about on paper. Lovers locking lips, embracing- a vision to stare at for a while. 

100 words will pause you, it will shift you from your office seat, it will shake you ever so gently. His album, when played 'til the end, took my hand, and led me to a screen'. That is basically how his whole album goes. 

Cold/mess is music that will one day, maybe, change our lives because it arrived at the right time. 

(L) Album art for Prateek Kuhad's song did you/fall apart, 2018. (R) The Lovers II, Rene Magritte, 1928.

(L) Album art for Prateek Kuhad's song did you/fall apart, 2018. (R) The Lovers II, Rene Magritte, 1928.

Frustrated desires are a common theme in René Magritte’s work. Here, a barrier of fabric prevents the intimate embrace between two lovers, transforming an act of passion into one of isolation and frustration. Some have interpreted this work as a depiction of the inability to fully unveil the true nature of even our most intimate companions.

A sheer cloth prevents the intimate embrace between two lovers in Rene Magritte's The Lovers. What should have been a moment of fierce passion turns into one of frustrated desires. And if you've ever been in love, this version seems a more realistic portrayal than the ones shown in our ever romantic movies. There is passion, there is desire, and yet at times there is that frustrating lump in your throat which you can't quite seem to explain, and yet which Prateek Kuhad manages to make us feel in his beautiful way.

Perhaps fitting then, that the cover art for his latest album bares resemblance to the paintings by Magritte. Similar emotions portrayed beautifully in his songs, and complimented with such fitting cover art. One could also argue how Magritte predicted modern day love in his timeless paintings, but that's another conversation for another time.