Panic at the Party

Panic at the Party

“If you ever wanted to convince someone to listen to my music, then you could say, if you like Death Cab for Cutie but you want to make a little bit more Lana Del Rey, you should listen to it.” Meet Ash Lune, a Mumbai-born, Brisbane-based artist whose ethereal voice just floats above the music in her debut single, Panic at the Party. The track is a dreamy delight with feelings of melancholy, yearning and longing. It also has layers of instruments, like a deep piano melody with blotched guitar strings, and showcases her amazing range as a vocalist.

The track, Panic at the Party, gets its name from its theme of social anxiety and awkwardness — how one can be in a room full of people but still feel lonely. Coming up next is a track called Before from her EP, slated to come out this month.

“I would always picture myself as a musician. I came to Australia and told my parents, ‘I am going to look at music like a hobby and pursue counselling and one day when I’ll be rich enough, I’ll just make music.’ Just like a classic Asian girl who wants to make her parents happy.” For Ash, music became the way of life and a career choice only when she moved away. Her love for the piano reflects her passion for South-Korean pianist, Yiruma’s classical piece, River Flows in You. “I always hoped a boy would play that piece for me and I would immediately fall for him. That never happened obviously, so I learnt to play it myself. I bought a little keyboard and went from there.”

“I was doing my Master of Counselling in Psychology at the University of Queensland, working part-time and then be at the studio for at least four to five hours every alternate day, and that’s when Panic at the Party was written. I was going through so much stress and anxiety and I was at a breaking point. Anything would happen and I would just start crying. The song was like an amalgamation of what was happening and that really messed me up for life, but at least a good song came out of it.”

“The latest song from my upcoming EP is very personal. It’s about my best friend and I. It’s a literally from a con- versation we were having about how our dreams do come true but you do come back to reality again. I am living the dream but your brain is still your brain. If you have anxiety, it’s not gonna go away just because you are living yourdream. You are just going to find other things to be anxious about. And I was under the impression that I would be happy in the moment I will be signed up by the label or I’m going to be happy the moment this happens or that happens. Just waiting to be happy.”

Mental health issues have often found a place in Ash’s music, not only since she is a trained therapist, but because she strongly believes how gravely important this subject is for a better tomorrow. “I have never met anyone who doesn’t have mental difficulties. Currently, everyone needs to go to therapy. With my music, I hope it highlights this issue and starts a conversation.”

Text Hansika Lohani Mehtani
Date 23-06-2022