Formed in as early as 1998, "Kryptos" is perhaps the only true to the bone Thrash Metal band in India. Though the sound of the band borders on Melodic Metal to some extent, the main essence is that of 1980’s kick in the ass Thrash Metal. Conceived in Bangalore by vocalist/guitarist Nolan Lewis and Ganesh K (ex-vocalist/bassist), the band has released three hugely acclaimed albums till date. "Spiral Ascent" in 2004, "The Ark Of Gemini" in 2008 and the more recent "The Coils Of Apollyon" in February 2012. Their debut album was not only a rage in the Indian Underground, but also spread to U.S and parts of Europe, thus resulting in signing a deal with Old School Metal Records (California, U.S) in 2008.
Come June, and Kryptos will be setting the Bangalore Open Air stage on fire, alongside Iced Earth and Kreator, one of their major influences.
IMR: "The Coils of Apollyon" was long due, since your 2nd album came in 2008. And it opened to rave reviews. How has the response been?
Nolan: The response has been great so far. Everyone who bought it and who got in touch with us after that have had some really good things to say about it. Once the album is released worldwide we should see the album get a lot more attention.
IMR: Kryptos is perhaps the oldest and the most true to its sense Thrash Metal band in India. Do you take pride in this, or are you disappointed at the dearth of Thrash outfits in India?
Nolan: We aren’t a thrash band. We have elements of thrash but we aren’t a pure thrash band but any stretch. It’s just that no one is really sure what to call us so thrash seems to be the most convenient but our music is so much more than that.
IMR: 14 years into the scene, Kryptos has seen many lineup changes and you guys have matured with time. How do you manage to retain the essence while going through these changes? How has your sound evolved?
Nolan: It isn’t too difficult because everyone who has been in this band, both past and present, has always been on the same page when it comes to Metal music in general. We all have pretty much the same influences and we all grew up listening to the same music so the essence of what we do keeps carrying on regardless of who is in the band.
Over the years we’ve gradually found our own sound and right now we’re at a point where we can let whatever we write flow naturally and not worry too much about where to fit things in and stuff like that. I’d say we’ve found the right balance between our influences and our own sound.
IMR: Kryptos was the first Indian Metal band to extensively tour Europe. How was the experience?
Nolan: It was just 5 gigs actually across 3 countries but yeah it was a brilliant experience. We got to play alongside some great bands and made a lot of friends there. The atmosphere there is so very different from here and that was what we loved. New faces, new places, new beer haha.
IMR: Since you don’t play many gigs, distribution of your albums becomes important. How have things been since you tied up with Old School Metal Records?
Nolan: Things were great with OSM Records. They have always been supportive of us from day one and it’s due to them that our last album reached countries in South America, Europe and many part of North America. With our new album we’re looking to sign onto a European label, which is currently on the cards so once that is finalized we’ll have a much larger distribution network to get our music out.
IMR: Kryptos endorses Mapex drums and ESP guitars. How did the deal happen? How important are these gears to the band’s sound?
Nolan: The deal was worked out through Furtados Music and Sahil Makhija from Demonic Resurrection. I think it was limited to just a few Indian bands but it was pretty good to get some really good equipment and gear from both Mapex and ESP. Of course the better the gear the better you’re going to sound so that’s pretty much the case with us as well.
IMR: What are your lyrics based on? Has it got something to do with Kryptos not playing covers?
Nolan: Ummm we haven’t played covers in our sets for nearly 10 years now. Lyrically we deal with a whole load of things ranging from the occult, to conspiracy theories, to sci-fi concepts, extra terrestrials, war, religion, magic, mythology etc. Basically whatever interests us.
IMR: You had supported Iron Maiden, one of your major influences, in 2009. And in Bangalore Open Air, you guys are playing alongside Iced Earth and Kreator, again a band you look up to. How excited are you?
Nolan: We’re thrilled of course. We’re big fans of both bands and both of them have influenced us in some form or the other so it will be fantastic to share the same stage with them.
IMR: BOA will see five major Indian Metal bands alongside two international acts. Is it going to be competition or brotherhood amongst the Indian bands?
Nolan: Neither. We don’t look at anything as a competition and the whole "brotherhood" of Metal is just BS. There’s no competition and there’s no brotherhood. It just is what it is. We’re just looking to have a good time with all our buddies there and listen to some good music. That’s about it.
IMR: What can we expect from Kryptos at Bangalore Open Air?
Nolan: What one can always expect from us. Lots of denim, leather, foul language, sweat and beer haha. We’re going to play almost our entire new album with some older songs as well and there should be some great visuals to back up the music.
IMR: Well, that's it, thank you for taking the time in answering our questions and best wishes from Team IMR for BOA!
Nolan: Thanks a lot. Cheers!
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