Pandu Hutomo is a talented and enigmatic young singer and songwriter from South Jakarta. His bio reads like that of a Rock and Roll secret agent. His stories of chart topping success and questionable adventures have led to his nickname, “Batavian Rogue.” The tales include, “A love affair with the corrupt and idle rich,” as well as a recount of a year spent, “on the run throughout Singapore, Thailand, and Hong Kong.”
For the better part of three years, Pandu has worked as a solo artist relaying his escapades into song. In 2019 his song “Insane” garnered hundreds of thousands of spins and landed his name at the top of a number of playlists. As a writer, Pandu has the rare ability to turn very personal stories into universally relatable and infectiously singable Pop songs.
Hutomo’s latest single, “South City” is an epic narrative of love and regret. It is the story of a lonely middle aged man who is pining for his lost love and the glory days of his youth. Told in the first person, he calls “Rachel” on the phone in hopes of returning to his life with her and their daughter in South City. It is touching, sad and real.
Beautifully produced by AMI Award-winning producer Jessilardus Mates, the track successfully straddles two different eras of popular music. The verse is built on a simple and very modern Indie pop groove. When the song turns to the chorus, the mix opens up to the lush strings of a classic 1970’s inspired Pop arrangement. The sound eventually grows into a massive cinematic and rhythmic track, until ultimately falling back to a minimalist version of the opening verse. Vocally, Pandu transitions between Indie rocker and Adult Contemporary crooner with easy authenticity.
“South City” is an accomplishment in both literary storytelling and Pop song craftsmanship. Check it out on the Deep Indie Dive playlist and follow the links below to connect with Pandu Hutomo.