Prabh Deep: Tabia | Review

Prabh Deep: Tabia | Review

On a warm spring evening in 2019, rapper-producer Prabh Deep trooped into a New Delhi rehearsal studio with a group of some of the city’s most impressive instrumentalists. Their goal was to take the Punjabi rapper’s critically acclaimed 2017 debut album, Class-Sikh, and rewrite it for a live band. It was an ambitious undertaking. Producer Sez on the Beat had created a gritty, trap-tinged soundscape for Class-Sikh—skittering 808s, aggro bass synths, loads of samples—that reflected Prabh’s grim sketches of life in a crumbing Northeast Delhi neighborhood, filled with families (including his) that were violently displaced by the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. Over five rehearsals, Prabh and the band crafted a radically different sound for the project, incorporating breezy sax solos, chunky alt-rock guitar riffs, and funk rhythms into a fairly impressive rap-rock hybrid. The One Eight Project—named after his neighborhood zip code—only performed once, headlining a local music festival. But it was during those hasty jam sessions that Prabh began sketching out the basics for his new sound, first showcased on 2019 EP K I N G and now perfected on …
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