Weston Estate wants the world to know that they are definitively “ya aunty’s favorite boy band.” Made up of five best friends, the lo-fi alt band has tapped into their cultural influences and eclectic range of personalities to carve out a new space entirely their own. Today, Weston Estate released their new single, "Saturday Nights," alongside its music video. We talked to the band about their inspiration, creative process and what's next in store for them.
Named in jest for an affluent neighborhood adjacent to their hometown of Cary, North Carolina, Weston Estate is an alluring anomaly. Members Srikar Nanduri (guitar), Manas Panchavati (vocals), Tanmay Joshi (vocals), Abhi Manhass (production, bass), and Marco Luka (vocals) are five best friends whose descriptions of each other range from “epicurean dumbass,” “nicest guy you’ll ever meet,” to “a Spongebob character.”
The project started by accident in 2017 during a game of PlayStation. Abhi and Tanmay started freestyling, sparking an impulse to record a song on Abhi’s recently acquired FL studios. Eager to follow the creative spark, Abhi invited Tanmay and Srikar to his house. There was just one slight problem. He was home alone and barred from having friends over with security cameras and a German Shepherd to make sure of it. Determined, the boys snuck through Abhi’s basement window, saving the first recording session. The result was a dancehall song with a Bollywood sample that would soon attract the rest of the band and kick off the Weston Estate project.
The band quickly gained momentum after a rowdy live debut in 2018. With just one impromptu rehearsal under their belts, the boys were astonished by the crowd’s reaction. “We were playing sad songs and there was a mosh pit,” they pause for effect. “We somehow got a mosh pit out of high schoolers at a charity event.” Now in their second year of college, the longtime friends find themselves with an enthusiastic grassroots fanbase, over 12 million accumulated streams, and a major label deal with Arista Records.
Intersect: What inspired your new single "Saturday Nights?" What is the message you want fans to get?
Weston Estate: The idea for the song came about during a session we had at Tanmay's house but we fleshed it out over the course of about a year. It wasn't really inspired by any event in particular, but more by a feeling. The song is important to us because we made it at a time where our lives felt like they were at a standstill while everyone else's were moving right along. It felt like everyone around us had everything all figured out, but we still had no idea where our lives were going. We want our fans to hear this song and know that it's ok to feel uncertain sometimes and that everything will turn out just fine.
Similarly, what inspired the music video? How was filming?
WE: We were talking to the Idle House guys, who produced the video and came up with the idea of us searching for something while walking through the forest and tried to relate it to the meaning of the song. We spend what seems like forever looking for this thing, and we have fun with each other on the way. By the end of the video, we don't find what we're looking for, but we're still happy because we enjoyed the journey. Filming was a blast, honestly. The Idle House guys were an amazing team to work with. It genuinely just felt like we were hanging out instead of working on the video.
What's something each of your members brings to the table?
WE: We honestly all just bring a sense of easy-going hooliganry to any setting we're in. Abhi is the one that brings most of the headassery into the group. Srikar is the responsible one who grounds everyone and keeps them level-headed. Tanmay and Manas mostly bring comic relief; they're literally like cartoon characters. Marco brings a lot of guidance because he's traversing the music industry a lot on his own with his solo career.
How has the band evolved in the pandemic? How are you connecting to fans now?
WE: Honestly, the pandemic hasn't changed much since we all went to different colleges, so we were working remotely even before COVID. Quarantine definitely took a toll on us creatively, but we're working hard again now, which is an awesome feeling. We mostly engage with our fans on Instagram Live. It gives us a chance to talk to them and get to know them. It's always super fun getting on live and just having random conversations with fans, especially during the pandemic because it still feels like we're meeting new people all the time.
What can we expect from Weston Estate in the future?
WE: We want to also explore other creative avenues like movies, podcasts, gaming, and more. We also hope sometime in the next couple years to put out an album and really make it the beginning of something huge for us. We want it to have a crazy concept behind it; we want it to make the fans proud because they're basically our family now. :)
Check out Weston Estate's new single "Saturday Nights" below and let us know what you think!