Without question the most impressive debut of the past 12 months in the desi music diaspora was the emergence of the rainbow haired embodiment of ‘cool’ who goes by the name of Perera Elsewhere.
Born into a Sri Lankan immigrant family Perera cut her artistic teeth in Europe and in particular the grimy arty clubs of Berlin. In that eternal musical markaz to which artists flock when careers need re-ignition or launching, this slight statuesque woman worked with an electronic band with a reggae name, Jahcoozi. After several albums and the purchase of a cheap guitar in a French street stall she branched out on her own and released her first solo album, Everlast in 2013.
It has taken the indie music world by storm. The sound is rich and soulful but ultra-contemporary with no flashbacks to any previous decade and nothing Ceylonese. This is thinking person’s club melodies and beats, structured to soothe and seduce.
Elsewhere is obviously not her real name. But it is a well chosen nom de plume. Though her music lies several oceans removed from the teardrop isle Perera is a restless soul, such is the destiny of the immigrant. Elsewhere, means, not here. Someplace other than this. Or that. An uncertain location. Indeterminate. Impossible to specify. Simply, ‘out there’. What immigrant or third culture child has not felt more at home in these ambiguities than behind the mailbox and picket fence. Indeed, the true home of the immigrant, the globalised citizen is in the fissures between lands, not in any one.
With this loopy commendation I suggest you have a listen to a woman who is bound to loom large in the culture for many years, Perera Elsewhere.
01 Drunk Man
02 Giddy [ft. Gonjasufi]
04 Light Bulb
05 Ebora [ft. Aremu]
06 Dreamt That Dream
07 Shady [ft. Springintgut]
10 The Zap
12 Dimmed Down