Forget the box, art rock sensations Sundara Karma think outside the whole damn packing plant. Their songs are personal reactions to art, literature and culture – Plato, Wilde, Bram Stoker, Manet, Buddha – that tackle topics from online self-obsession to consumer capitalism, the smokescreen of the nuclear family and the lies at the heart of the teenage dream. Oscar, aged just twenty, is already emerging as the most captivating frontman of our times, plucking at the long, silvery thread of rock’n’roll androgyny that runs through Bowie, Bolan, Suede and My Chemical Romance while embracing high art, questioning The System, probing his darkest autobiographical depths and musing – jokingly - about the evil clowns controlling the Earth.
Add in a truckload of solid gold anthems that view classic noughties rock melodies through the modern indie prism of Arcade Fire and The Maccabees, and it’s no wonder Sundara Karma are being hailed as the bright future of alt-rock, a reputation built on a clash of exotic and ordinary that’s embedded deep in their roots. Oscar was originally born in Singapore and lived there until the age of seven, adoring the multi-cultural aspect of the place and recalling the joy of having his mother paint his nails for him. When his father moved the family to Bourne End near Maidenhead for work, Oscar discovered rock music, inspired to write his first song “as soon as I could string three chords together” at the age of eight, inspired by the sight of Jack Black knee-sliding around a classroom like AC/DC’s pet rhino in School Of Rock.
Already bold and beautiful, now watch Sundara Karma get big. Very big.