April’s Add of the Month – All Heartbeat by Flung

text by digital-media

17 April, 2024

Words by: Marion Suchowiecky (Internal Music Director 23′-24′)

Kashika Kollaikal’s newest project, All Heartbeat, represents a brimming and glittering cacophony of emotions bound together  by her musical artistry. Kollaikal was inspired by the powerful sense of limbo she felt as she found herself trapped at Seattle airport by an ever-delayed flight. Airports are inherently nostalgic sites, always representative of the act of departure – whether departing home, or departing the place one traveled to. However, airports are simultaneously symbols of hope and new possibilities. These contradictions, between nostalgia and hope, are embodied by the lyrics and instrumentals of Flung’s All Heartbeat.

When one falls victim to a delayed flight, they are relegated to being an observer. This incidentally voyeuristic act is where Kollaikal found her inspiration. She recognized that the airport is a treasure chest of tempos: people speeding to catch flights or get past security, others sitting at the bar killing time. Planes taking off or landing, while others taxi on the runway for long stretches of time. In this state of reflection, Kollaikal explores a sense of longing for the past, the future, for another, which sometimes seems to wholly envelop the lonely observer. 

Instrumentally, this album is expansive, complexly textured, and ever-changing. While the album is definitely rooted in the electronic genre, featuring a wide variety of synthesizers and electronic beats, there is so much more to it. In “Away From the Whir” Kollaikal incorporates maracas and an acoustic guitar. In the first track, “Baby I Hope,” she textures the percussive mix with a combination of electronic and analogue (Brazilian-style) drums, and even some wind chimes. Though the pace of the album is constantly changing, each new song feels like the logical continuation, in the best way possible. This instrumental achievement perfectly matches the nature of the stream-of-consciousness style lyrics.

“Anything I want to do/the timing is holy.” These poignant lyrics represent the perhaps miraculous moment in which Kollaikal found herself at a terminal with her Harmonium, a free-reed keyboard which operates by wind being blown through it. In that time, she observed the connection that individuals have with “spaces… with each other…. with ourselves” (Bandcamp). Naturally, the album took a lot longer than one flight-delay to complete, so Kollaikal says that she continued to get inspiration from the perpetual “hum” of the world- localized sometimes in early morning walks, observing a stranger sing their favorite song in their car on the freeway, or simply hearing the overflowing bass emanating from somebody’s bedroom. She wanted to capture those transient sonic snapshots that stick with us in our subconscious memory as we move through the world at a pace that is oftentimes too rapid for our soul to process. Kollaikal dug deep into her personal consciousness to unearth these moments of universal connection, and she masterfully stitched them together in a deep and complex tapestry of sounds.

This album is a perfect spring listen. Focus tracks include: 1, 2, 6, 7, 9, and 12. Play this album for your friends at the beach, on a picnic, or on a late night drive as the warm wind blows into your car. Alternatively, listen to this when you’re in need of some direction or looking to sink into your nostalgia.