Vancouver, Canada

Battle for Watermark


Behind the Music

As an artist interested in creating music inspired by people and places that have a story to tell, this music project is exactly the sort of thing I like to be involved with. I had a vague idea of the crimes that occur on the high seas prior to reading The Outlaw Ocean, but was unprepared by the immense scale that Ian unveils. We have facilitated a near dystopian environment for these crimes to take place all over the world. 

The stories as well as visual and audio components that Ian has curated is melancholic, but also incredibly inspiring as an artist. Music has the ability to be highly evocative and can transmit a mood or, in this case, a sense of urgency that in turn may bring about a change, just as journalism strives to do. The reporting and music featured in this project work in tandem with each idea, feeling and concept feeding into each other. It’s a creative cycle that we have collectively begun and will hopefully result in something unique and powerful. 

About Malfnktion

MALFNKTION is the electronic music project of Indian artist Aditya Alamuru. Sampling Indian films and musical instruments around an alternative hip hop framework has allowed Malfnktion to appeal to a growing audience in India and abroad. His work is inherently collaborative, tying in multiple mediums from video, animation and graphic design to music and live performance.

His debut EP “Hindustani Rascal” was an homage to the ’60s golden age of Indian cinema. It was released in September 2015 and was featured on Apple Music, Buzzfeed and Festival Sherpa. His debut LP, “Infinity Trail” was released in October 2019 along with a novel 360 album cover and an audio visual set.

Playing at some of the most happening bass and dance music events in Mumbai, Bangalore and New Delhi, Malfnktion has created a niche for himself in the Indian underground music scene. He has performed at festivals such as Magnetic Fields, Echoes of Earth, Nh7, Sula Fest and BassCamp. Over the last couple of years, he has opened for Maribou State, Om Unit, Joe Kay (Soulection), Ivy Lab, Anna Morgan and Iglooghost.

At the end of 2018, Malfnktion was selected as one of 24 fellows from around the world to take part in the renowned OneBeat music tour and residency in the U.S. Malfnktion’s releases on labels include “Be Free” featuring Zoya (Souletiquette, Dublin), “Chameleon” featuring MadStarBase (GetPhysicalMusic, Berlin), “Tawang” (Nowadays Records, France) and “Charlie” featuring Shayan (Saavn Music, India).

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

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