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Gig Reviews Tue, 28 Mar 2017 15:45:41 +0000 en-gb Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate-Mindstreet Tour Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate-Mindstreet Tour

  I have waited for 5 years to witness The God of Small Strings – Baiju Dharmajan live and finally I got to see him live with his new project Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate at Hard Rock Café, Pune. It was the 2nd gig in the 10 Years of Mindstreet Tour. The band consists of The God himself on Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals and 3 other immensely talented musicians viz. Vishnu Ravi (Vocals, Rhythm Guitar), Sujay Suaharsh (Bass), and Avirup Bose (Drums).


Despite the launch of Blue Frog in Pune and Above and Beyond playing the same day in Pune, the turnout for the gig was quite good. The crowd mostly had hardcore Motherjane fans waiting to watch the band play the signature Carnatic progressive music. 


The setlist:

1. Demented – The Crossover

2. God’s Own Country – Wrenz United

3. Halo – The Crossover

4. By the Moonlight – Wrenz United

5. Philia – The Crossover

6. Broken – Maktub (motherjane)

7. Mile Sur Mera Tumhara 

8. Rainbow – Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate

9. Mindstreet – Maktub (motherjane)

10. Cupid’s Dead – Extreme (Cover)

11. Karna – Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate

12. Bliss - Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate

13. Vande Mataram

14. Fields of Sound – Maktub (motherjane)

15. Chasing the Sun – Maktub (motherjane)


The overall band performance was extremely acute and didn’t fail to mesmerize the crowd, especially, when the band played Mile Sur Mera Tumhara, everyone from the venue cheered. Fans are still very emotional and nostalgic about Motherjane and it was demonstrated when the crowd consorted with the band when they played Motherjane classics like Broken, Mindstreet, Field of Sound, Chasing the Sun.


Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate OCs from the setlist received good response from the crowd though the songs were being played for the first time. Subjectively, Karna is the band’s best composition from the setlist having the perfect progressive rock songwriting. 




Apart from the not okayish sound at the venue, the gig was superb. And I was very happy to finally meet Baiju Dharmajan and the band and have a talk. Everyone in the crowd went home happy. And I suppose, the wait is definitely worth for Baiju Dharmajan Syndicate’s album release.

]]> (Indrajeet Deshpande) Gig Reviews Thu, 05 Dec 2013 03:59:23 +0000
Score Night Featuring Before The Holocaust & Crypted (Chennai) Score Night Featuring Before The Holocaust & Crypted (Chennai)


After a spate of rock, funk and hard rock shows at Chennai's very own Star Rock, Score Night presented its next edition featuring metal bands – "Crypted" and "Before The Holocaust". The venue was in a basement-located pub marred with really poor lighting. The gig commenced with "Before The Holocaust" taking stage. This was my first introduction to the band and for those who are new to this band, BTH plays metalcore while experimenting with ambient electronic/synth sounds. The band toiled around hard to fix serious sound problems with the set up. It was quite unfortunate that on certain occasions they had to stop playing mid-way through the songs. This ultimately led to the band having just about 20 odd minutes to complete their set. While the music was primarily in the vein of "As I Lay Dying", the use of the keyboards during the interludes and chorus added a new dimension to the insipid metalcore genre. I quite fancied the band to be honest and even more so after checking out their music online. The band left the stage on a high by playing their track "Condemnium" which was well received by the crowd.

"Crypted" needs no introduction. They were headliners for this show and they had all the support any band could ask for – tons of fans in "Crypted" band t-shirts. The gig marked the joining of new bassist, Moiz, to the band and it also saw the return of founding guitarist, Arvind, to play a one-off gig with the band. The performance had a good momentum to it with the band blasting out originals like "You Are All Diseased", "Inside The Outsider", "Flesh Eater" and a couple more. The band also covered Decapitated’s "Spheres Of Madness" and Gojira’s "Remembrance". Much to the horror of the hotel staff, there were 5 man-mosh-pits and fans raging on stage - hilarious and enjoyable to witness at the same time. The gig was a fun way to while away the Friday evening.

Apart from the incessant sound problems, Star Rock ought to figure out better lighting for the stage. Either that or I should get faster lenses. Here are some of the images in noisy-grainy goodness that I could salvage from the ones that I captured.


]]> (Vince) Gig Reviews Sat, 12 Jan 2013 00:00:00 +0000
The Guns 'N' Roses Experience On 12-12-12(Leisure Valley, Gurgaon) The Guns 'N' Roses Experience On 12-12-12(Leisure Valley, Gurgaon)

I was skeptical as I entered the barren patch of land in Gurgaon called Leisure Valley. The familiar surroundings did not instill much excitement and on the contrary was a constant reminder of the Metallica fiasco 14 months ago. Seeing a strong police team and hoards of Kyazoonga (the ticket partners) volunteers was something that wasn’t present last time around, and was slightly reassuring.

Standing in line waiting for gates to open, the opening act Brand New Machines were going through their sound check. The Dallas based quartet went on to play their style of Texas flavored rock and had a very 80s classic feel about them. Their almost one hour set was followed by a dozen people on stage prepping it up for one of the biggest acts of rock to follow.

Dim stage lights, GnR logos flashing on the big screen and a thin layer of smoke welcomed Guns n Roses on stage. Dressed in his characteristic (of late) oversized jacket, cowboy boots, hat and glares Axl Rose strolled across stage and was met with massive cheers before the band broke into Chinese Democracy. DJ Ashba teased the crowd with the opening bars of Welcome to the Jungle, before Axl ran across stage screaming “Do you know where you are?”. What followed was 3 hours of sheer brilliance from a band who have been there and done that. Three hours with over 25 songs had a perfect mix of numbers from the Appetite era and their new album. Estranged, Live n Let Die, You could be Mine, Civil War, It’s So easy and Don’t Cry were the classics everyone wanted to hear and the band did not disappoint.

Thrown into the mix were two short guitar solos from Richard Fortus and DJ Ashba, a piano solo by Dizzy Reed and Bumblefoot and Tommy Stinson singing a song each. Axl announced that that the band were going to play a song to “entertain themselves” and did a cover of the AC/DC classic Riff Raff.

Axl was surprisingly in a good mood –interacting with the crowd, wearing a mask during Knockin on heaven’s door and throwing his whistle into the crowd.

The loudest screams in the entire show was when DJ Ashba played the first eight notes to Sweet Child O’ Mine and the crowd screamed their lungs out during the chorus. Axl sat on his piano, sang a short cover of Another Brick In The Wall before launching into the iconic ballad November Rain.

Fortus and Bumblefoot did a soulful jam on two acoustic guitars which led into Patience. Paradise City was the last song of the night with confetti bombs going off and Axl running to all corners of the stage during the end. The band infact came back on stage even after signing off to play a cover of Rose Tatto’s song Nice Boys.

Even though the band has had a million lineup changes, the present bunch looks like a well-oiled unit. All three guitarists have unique guitar styles and complement each other wonderfully. Bumblefoot is the true shredder in the band and gives a different touch to some classic Gunner solos with his sweep picking and fast runs. DJ Ashba and Richard Fortus were true entertainers, using every inch of the stage and backed ably by the solid basswork of Tommy Stinson. Dizzy Reed, Chris Pitman and Frank Ferrer also played their parts suitably well.

For all that has been said about his timings, weight and voice- Axl sounded great. The screeches and squeals might not be as perfect as it was 20 years ago, but nonetheless had an Axl stamp all over it. The 50 year old rocker was a bundle of energy throughout the set running around, standing on monitors and doing his characteristic moves with the mic stand. He won over the crowd by acknowledging his “lifelong dream to play in India” and dedicating the concert to Pt. Ravi Shankar who passed away in the morning.

With a victory sign pointing towards the heavens Axl screamed into the microphone- “Delhi.. India...Thank you. Good Fuckin Night” to wind up their 3 city maiden tour in India. On a cold Wednesday night walking back with aching feet and buzzing ears the Delhi crowd was taking back with them memories for a lifetime.

]]> (Bryan Munzey) Gig Reviews Sun, 16 Dec 2012 06:21:43 +0000
Final Day At Strawberry Fields 2012 (Palace Grounds, Bangalore) Final Day At Strawberry Fields 2012 (Palace Grounds, Bangalore)

Strawberry Fields, this year was supposed to be the most majestic one of all. Held at the mighty Palace Grounds, this was supposed to be one of the more promising festivals of the year, as always. Over 50 bands competed over the first two days, leading to a grand finale of five bands competing and opening for internationally acclaimed Ambient Metal/Progressive Metal act Skyharbor and local rockers Parvaaz.

The five bands that qualified for the last day were: Clown With A Frown, The F16's, Orchid, The News and Anthracite.

Though there were numerous big names among the list of 50 competing bands, the top five bands chosen seemed rather ordinary. It was surprising that bands such as The Family Cheese, a professional band that has even played at fests like Ragasthan, The Down Troddence, or even The Black Letters, winners of IIT Saarang’s rock competition, didn’t make it to the final round. Instead there was an array of mediocrity on display on the final day.

As was the case when bands were competing on the first two days, there was barely any crowd in when the competing bands were SCHEDULED to perform. A two and a half hour delay due to a delay in sound checks helped ensure that the bands at least had a few ears in presence at the venue, disinterested perhaps but present nonetheless.

First up was a band called ‘The News’. Recently having performed at a pre-party for the ‘Harley Rock Riders’ show, this was a fairly seasoned band and it was evident from the ease with which the vocalist handled the crowd. The band was quite tight, but one got the feeling they were a little too upbeat and happy for a crowd filled with black tees waiting for Dan Tompkins to tear that stage apart. But it wasn’t their fault at all; in fact they were quite good with their set and started things off well.

‘Anthracite’, ‘Clown with a frown’, ‘Orchid’ and the ‘F16s’ followed. None of which failed to create any impression on me whatsoever. ‘The Orchid’ had songs which were fairly cliché, as far as death metal goes. ‘Clown with a frown’, definitely won it hands down when it came to stage act but as far as music goes, I wasn’t really sold on the concept, but it was a fairly interesting one, to be completely honest. Maybe if the vocalist had actually been on-key, it would have actually helped. Just a thought!

The ‘F16s’ got off stage, and ‘Parvaaz’ came on soon after. This is an act I’ve never caught live before and I was thoroughly impressed. Though the Psychedelic-Sufi sphere isn’t one that I usually tread in, this band has definitely left me intrigued by the space. The vocalist was beyond phenomenal and the entire act was well balanced, sans any hiccups. They played most of the tracks from ‘Behosh’, their latest album and definitely, got the crowd well fired up for Skyharbor.

Skyharbor, has grown from a bedroom project to one of the biggest acts on the metal scene, worldwide. They last played in town, whilst opening for Lamb of God and it was incredible to have them back in the country so soon. Skyharbor has now grown into a fully blown live act, with Dan Tompkins and Anup Sastry being a permanent fixture. The dimensions these two add to the band is immense and this was what sets them so far ahead of all the other acts in the country, not to forget the absolute genius, that is Keshav Dhar.

They started the set with Dots and Order 66 and post that there was no stopping them. The mix sounded quite good, which was something that was lacking at the previous show and Devesh seemed to fit in with a lot more ease. He even nailed the solos on Catharsis and Celestial, to absolute perfection.

Their set was absolutely incredible, complete with the cherry on top, Maeva, which recently won the Rolling Stone Metal Award for Best Song. The end of their set left me craving for ever so much more. This is one band I can never get enough of. Skyharbor is an incredibly talented band and I cannot wait for the new album. I hope to see them back in India soon and would love to catch the entire Illusion album, and the new album tracks. In fact Bangalore got a sneak peek of one of the newer tracks at the sound check when Skyharbors set began, or at least what seemed like one.

P.S: As a Bangalorean, I must add the fact that, the extremely low turn out for the gig was extremely disappointing. No matter how many international acts come down, when fans don’t support festivals like Strawberry Fields, there isn’t a way to ensure this scene builds. Not to forget the trillions of people that claim to be hardcore music junkies/metal heads but cant bother to turn up for a free gig that happened in Palace Ground, and then complain about the scene, and how there aren’t enough avenues for bands to take music up professionally. What a bunch of hypocrites! Absolute disappointment!

To sum it all up; Strawberry Fields was an an amalgam of pink super-swag guitars, cheesy jokes by vocalists desperately trying to fit in, amateurly planned soundchecks(from the bands’ end), half naked bassists, two brilliant sets by Parvaaz and Skyharbor, an ocean of mediocrity and a total loss of faith in the local crowd.

]]> (Hari Amajaniac) Gig Reviews Thu, 06 Dec 2012 00:00:00 +0000
Moshpit 4.0-Live @ On The House(Indore) Moshpit 4.0-Live @ On The House(Indore)

The fourth installment of Moshpit knocked on every rock lover/music lover/metal head's door pretty hard, it actually blasted the door open. Though the gig offered an assortment of 8 bands, the gig's purpose was to feature the trendsetter rock acts from Indore namely Nicotine and Grim Reapers. The gig began at nearly 7 in the evening, first up were 1000 Watt Sun (my own band), formed very recently just weeks ago. We covered the likes of Porcupine Tree and Green Day. Though the crowd merely brooded at us in the beginning, but were at their feet with our final song that is Open Car. As we went off stage and the next band Collision entered the once hookah/ coffee lounge 'On The House', which was the venue for the event, brewed with music lovers and a huge unexpected turn out of about 400 people shook the whole place.

Collisions though a 5 piece band was easily dominated by guitarist Prabhas who to begin with appalled the sound guy and the crowd with a laptop on stage that he used instead of a processor. The band was instrumental and I could make out some experimental guitar noises as the performance progressed. The crowd's participation finally began with them. Collisions was succeeded by Men Slaughter who swept the crowd off their feet with AC/DC's Back in Black, The head bangers finally joined in and the bartender busied.As Blindfolds descended after Men Slaughter, the regulars could finally spot some known faces as these guys have been playing for a while now. Blindfolds kick started with an improvised cover of 'Killing In The Name' by RATM. the crowd joined in and for a moment it seemed as if Blindfolds should sideline their metal pursuits but they bombarded the berserk crowd with their originals which seemingly was a call for the forgotten moshers, giving the next act Elemental an even wilder crowd.

Elemantal kick started with a metal cover but soon melted into bluesy riffs which added the avant garde quotient to their regular metal performance. The venue was shaking with circumcised moshpits and the heads banged into insanity. Elemental was a treat to the ecstatic metal heads, but the place longed for rock n roll. Grim Reapers finally descended to the stage and burnt the stage alive covering the likes of RHCP and The Verve. The irresistible keyboard effects added to the groove and the guitar and even the improvs seemed perfect as performers from backstage huddled the stage. Evidently the crowd's involvement was utmost with Grim Reapers and could have reached nirvana with the next up Nicotine, probably the most recognisable rock act from Indore,if it wasn't for Indore Police's interception. Moshpit 4.0 just about to reach pinnacle was thrashed into a faux pas by the cops, followed by Anirudh's (front man, Nicotine) wrath on the police, the cops were unexpectedly quiet during the row but all of us had to return with a heavy heart without witnessing Nicotine. Apparently, a grumpy neighbour was unable to catch his dose of 40 winks and decided to bring down the curtains on this event.( sounds familiar?).

PS: I forgot Zero Gravity but to sum it up, Kratika did an unbelievable job on scream vocals(vaguely reminded me of Arch Enemy). The only sound that surpassed Kratika's was that of hundred jaws dropping at the same time.

]]> (Siddhant Tiwari) Gig Reviews Fri, 19 Oct 2012 04:17:51 +0000
Ritual Ascension Fest-Live @ Xrong Place(Day 2) Ritual Ascension Fest-Live @ Xrong Place(Day 2)

Day 2 witnessed yet another brutal, facemelting thrash and death assault. Definitely the turn-out was much less, but that day Kolkata surely witnessed the true music listeners, the energy wasn't one bit less. The proceedings were no bit different from the Day 1. The gig welcomed all the qualitative listeners with a bang on timing at 12 pm sharp.

Dead Veneration Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

The next day started with Dead Veneration, and this time, oh boy, didn't they just blew the venue apart? OH YES! Ripping away the soul of each and every person present there, Dead Veneration continued it's series of Old School Death Metal attack. They started with their OC, "Circle Of Deceit", a brilliant composition with real haunting intro. I always loved their OC's and their vocals. No nonsense, pure Death Metal was what they wanted to supply the audience with. Covers of Bolt Thrower and Obituary led to a mayhem in the audience. They also showed their respect towards Dhwesha, yet another Old School Death metal outfit from Bangalore. No disappointment from them this time. Under their pseudo-names, they proved to be pseudo-poseur musical extravaganza. As their debut performance, they certainly did a wonderful job. Looking forward for more from these suburban death lads, in future and wishing them luck as well!

Setlist: Circle of Decit
Bolt Thrower-Killchain
Obituary-Back From Dead
Spiritual Amputation

Band Members: Abhishek Das-Vocals/drums
Soumick Chakrabarty-Guitars
Deshubhro Banerjee-Bass

Mortar Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

The next band up was Mortar. Wasn't this band awaited for, by the mob? Incessant thrash assault was what people awaited. Powerful and tight, absolutely striking they were. Vocals were much improved than before and sounded like constant teutonic guttural rasp, guitar riffs were intricate, neat and enjoyable, drummer made a usage of good amount of fill rolls and double bass, bassist was well supportive and energy provider. Co-ordination among the band was super, that drove the crowd for relentless headbangs and constant attempt to mosh the venue down. The ending of their setlist was perfect as they say "WE ARE NOT OLD SCHOOL, YOU ARE". Mortar was definitely crowd pleasing, constant powerhouse of energy. A great debut performance with their OC, well written and composed. "Ground Reality" by them created an instant stir, when they were released as they were the only Thrash Metal band of it's own kind for the first time in Kolkata. People from across the country appreciated their song and surely it was a treat watching them, live. Great future aspect for this band, and in no time they would be owning the city. Mortar brothers, huge thumbs up from my side!

Setlist: Human Plague
Kreator- Riot Of Violence/People Of Lie
Napalm Messiah
Sepultura- Inner self
Ground Reality

Band members: Nilabja Banerjee-Vocals
Samrat Daas-Guitars
Dani Lopchen-Bass

Purgation Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

The last and final act for RAF was Purgation. An old and the only most experienced band, Purgation is a merciless Brutal Death Metal outfit from Kolkata. They have been active in the city for quite sometime, also they have performed in Bangalore's well known, Undergrind Fest, which was headlined by Wormrot. "Kill your mother, rape your dog" boomed in the venue, as they mercilessly covered Dying Fetus and forced the people to bang their heads with their well prepared songs. Their OC's are well composed and their lyrics are as brutal as their genre. I have witnessed Purgation several times before, and I have always been apprehensive towards their performances. They have surely reached a great height, and would be achieving more in future. Fucking A+ performance. A perfect Brutal Death Metal assault drew the ending line of the Day 2, RAF. Purgation sure left an unfinished gory thirst amongst the crowd for more, that would keep coming over and over again, for more. Thank you, Purgation for the brilliant performance, and an cheers to you guys for more to come!

Setlist: Dying Fetus- Kill Your Mother, Rape Your Dog
Uncanny obsession
System Impaled
Autopsy- Charred Remains
Repugnant Flesh
Cannibal Corpse- Stripped, Raped, Strangled
Rule of Butchery
Suffocation- Infecting The Crypts

Band Members: Subhajit Dasgupta : Vocals
Denzil Davidson-Guitars
Debanjan Chaudhari-Guitars
Ayushman Sinha-Bass
Abhinava Shukla-Drums

Ritual Ascension Fest finally came to an end, with a huge response from the audience. Putrid endeavors by Putrid Ascendancy has been a grave success, with people around, talking for further gigs by Putrid Ascendancy. All the pseudo metalheads, would be eradicated and educated to true Metal. The main motive of RAF was certainly not to show how old school they are, but to educate the masses about the true essence of Metal. They concluded that Core-kata can be transformed and there can be huge worshipers of true Metal as well. A huge thanks to all those who came down, and supported and only for them, the gig has received such positive energy, and successful reports. I would certainly be coming back for more and more. And a huge thanks to Putrid Ascendancy for comprehending such a fest in Kolkata. Thank you to them as well, for giving me the oppurtunity to pen down few words for the show. Hails to all!

]]> (Rupsa Das) Gig Reviews Thu, 09 Aug 2012 10:24:47 +0000
Ritual Ascension Fest-Live @ Xrong Place(Day 1) Ritual Ascension Fest-Live @ Xrong Place(Day 1)

Finally it was 4th August. The day when all the true music listeners flocked around at Southern Avenue, Xrong Place. The crowded arena comprised of people in band t-shirts and also real good ear in music. The gig started a bit late due to technical complicacy, but the madness unleashed at about 2 p.m, when gates finally were thrown open for Ritual Ascension Fest. Checked and allowed, people were waiting for the intensity to start.

Strangulate Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

The show started with Strangulate, a three piece, Goregrind band of it’s first kind in Kolkata. Heavily influenced by Xysma, Repulsion, Carcass, General surgery etc, this band hit the nail real hard on the audience’s head. As soon as they started with the soundcheck, the audience went mad. They started with "Atrocious Anomalism", one of their OC. They covered bands like Carcass - Rot 'N' Roll and Repulsion – Black Breath, which was obscure as dinosaurs in Kolkata. Headbangs and swirls of hair boomed all across the room, as they continued with their performance. Good stage performance, some entertainment was provided with the scare mask, put on by the guitarist. As their first performance on stage, they certainly did a noteworthy job. And I certainly would be looking out for more, in future.

Setlist: Atrocious Anomalism.
Carcass-Rot 'N' Roll
Pathological Uproar
Mortuary Supplies
Repulsion- Black Breath.
Asphyxiation And Massive Killing In The Ambulance

Band Members: Subhajit Dasgupta-Vocals
Denzil Davidson-Guitars
Sayan Ray-Bass

10 Minutes To Anarchy Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

The next band up was 10 Minutes To Anarchy, a two piece Noisegrind band, also of it’s first kind in Kolkata. Small yet compact songs, like Noisegrind's bands actually should be. The frontman was very spontaneous, and kept the crowd active and alive. The guitarist had a roll with his guitars and the band was awesomely enjoyable. They started with one of their OC, "The President Is Gay" and continued when crowd wanted a Napalm Death by them, and they covered "Scum". Perfect part of RAF, 10 Minutes To Anarchy certainly uplifted the gig’s energy and provided the audience with a peek of the future proceedings of the show.

Setlist: The President Is Gay
Cock Rock
Napalm Death-Scum

Band members: Syd Myers-Vocals
Debanjan Chaudhari-Guitars

The next band up was Dead Veneration, but day 2 was the day for them.

Armament Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

After Dead Veneration, came Armament. A real teutonic Thrash Metal outfit from Kolkata. Well, lots to speak about them now. As soon as they were getting ready, audience flocked in, and gathered all around the venue. Everybody was waiting for some face-melting thrash. Probably no one in the crowd expected such straight outright thrash by them. Everybody’s mind was ripped apart as Armament got on stage. They started with “Remember The fallen” by the mighty Sodom. As they hit on the instrument, the audience went berserk banging their heads, and their constant trials to mosh the fuck out. Kazillions of people brought the place down as Armament continued to play their storm out there. Special mention goes to the vocalist, for his brilliant thrash vocals, the guitarists for the mad riffage, bassist for supporting and being a constant energy flow and the drummer for the barrage of blast beats, filthy and perfect covers of Sodom, that’s what they presented us with that day. Armament was a true win here, and received real favorable reviews by most of the audience present. Armament surely changed the idea of Thrash Metal in Kolkata. I would surely be looking out for them in future and I am sure people in Kolkata would be too. Spontaneity, great energy, fucking tight performance and contacting well with the audience, led Armament surely the hero of Day 1.

Setlist: Sodom-Remember The Fallen.
Wings Of Death
Hammer Of God
Sodom-Christ Passion
Sodom-Saw Is The Law

Band members: Indranil Dasgupta-Vocals
Syd Myers-Guitars
Soubhik Mondal-Guitars
Sayan Ray-Bass
Ayan Mukherjee-Drums

Necrodeity Ritual Ascension Fest 2012

After Armament came, Necrodeity, the band I have been waiting for during the whole gig. A bestial Death/Black Metal element from Kolkata, certainly one of it’s kind out here. As I was waiting patiently for them, their stage presence was ultra-cult, with bullet belts and leather ornaments of destruction, t-shirts of Necrovore, Barzak, Tribulation and Hell Hammer and certainly the attitude and skill to desecrate the false. I was and I emphasize I was, blown away when they started with Possessed-Exorcist. Death Metal is what they provided us with. Like an enormous demon, the whole band destroyed the venue with some ripper Death Metal. They covered bands which majority could not probably even spell properly till that day. I was overjoyed to see them covering bands like Necrovore, Terrorizer and Sarcofago. Their OC-Mors Delirus which means Psychotic Death, was well written and composed as well, portraying right kind of Death Metal to the audience. Their lyrical element was strong and soul ripping as few lines suggest.
"Cut throat wide open
Feast of death summons
Bestial insurgency proclaims
Delirious abysmal death"

"Order of black chaos
Death harbouring on your sanity
Ripping flesh, tearing soul apart
butchering fragile and fragility "

"Mors Delirus
Mors Delirus
Mors Insanus
Mors Delirus "

It's an occult ode to Chinnamasta, the Hindu deity, one of the ten tantric goddess and ferocious aspect of Devi. This song would also be one of the song amongst the demo, with three other songs which are spiritually interconnected. I am sure people who were ignorant towards Old School Death Metal, would be keen on knowing and inventing more about it. Energy, skills, and connectivity was definitely bestial, well standing up for their genre. Desecration of the false was successful with huge response from the audience. A very happy ending to Day 1. Necrodeity brothers, Hails!

Setlist: Possessed-Exorcist.
Morbid Angel- Maze Of Torment
Mors Delirus
Necrovore- Slaughtered Remains
Terrorizer- Fear Of Napalm
Sarcofago- Satanas

Band members: Desecrator-Vocals

End of Day 1 was sudden, yet a satisfied and content audience came out of the venue. Neck ache with enormous amount of happiness were what the people reported. Day 1 was a testimony of what Kolkata can become, and what Kolkata is about to be, in the near future. Day 1 was the promise of another assault on Day 2. Eradication of the falsehood would be a success. Truth of Metal would live, FOREVER!

]]> (Rupsa Das) Gig Reviews Thu, 09 Aug 2012 05:55:19 +0000
Bangalore Open Air 2012: Live @ Acharya Institute Of Technology(Bangalore) Bangalore Open Air 2012: Live @ Acharya Institute Of Technology(Bangalore)

It was the 16th of June, 2012, and a real long journey from Kolkata to Bangalore, and truckloads of anticipation later, I was finally on my way to cover the super-massive Bangalore Open Air. The cool, moist mid-June breeze of Bangalore could in no way dampen the spirits of me, and the several other metalheads from all over the country, who were flocking in to witness the biggest Metal fest in India. Through the busy streets of Bangalore, at the northern end of the city, guided by road indicator boards carrying Kreator and Suidakra pictures, I finally reached Acharya Institute of Technology, the venue. As I stood there in front of the main entrance and called up Paricshith, one of the main organizers and my contact person, I could feel the momentum building among the black-teed people. Yeah, it was easy locating him because of his blue tee!

I was guided to the press entrance, where I was supposed to meet Ramya. She tied a press-band around my wrist and guided me in. I was of the lucky few who could carry a camera inside! The Wacken Metal Battle finals were about to start, and Crypted, the south-zone finalists, were having their sound-check. A look at the Ronnie James Dio stage, and I so wanted to be on it, playing my stuff!

Crypted started off with their set at around 11 a.m. Then it was the turn of the East zone finalists, DamagEra from Gangtok. There weren’t many people on the other side of the fence at this time, but the level of excitement of the few present, made it worthwhile for the bands. Last but not the least, were the West zone finalists, Zygnema, who eventually won the Metal Battle and will be representing India at Germany. Tight, power packed performances by these bands, and the amount of audience support they got, were strongly indicative of the fact that the Metal scene in India is looking up and how.Theorized, the Bangalore based Progressive/Thrash Metal band, was the last minute inclusion in the star studded BOA line-up, and they were the first guest band up on stage. They played a pretty decent set, and were joined by the vocalist of Escher’s Knot on their last two songs.

Next up was Mumbai based Horror Metal outfit, Albatross. They enthralled the audience with their unique sound, fusing various elements and their splendid stage act. I had heard their music on the net, and one thing I have to say is, I was blown away by the precision with which they played through the set. Very few bands sound as close to their records. Bevar Sea was up next. Their unearthly sound of Stoner/ Sludge Metal didn’t go down very well with the audience, but I, for one loved every bit of it. It was something really unusual that they were doing, but nonetheless they were great at it. Next on stage was the band I was personally looking forward to, Delhi based Black Metal band 1833 A.D. The energy level of the crowd was now really soaring. And right from their first song, there were random shouts, asking for "Who Will Kill The Emperor", their first hit single. The band started with their trademark straightaway assault, and the crowd went into frenzy. But the rise in momentum was halted when lead guitarist RahulMehalwal’s guitar string zapped and cut his forearm. He rushed backstage. The vocalist kept the crowd engaged in talks, and the drummer treated them to a drum solo, so that they don’t grow impatient. Soon Rahul was back with a guitar, and thanked Nolan Lewis for helping him with it. There were minor glitches in the sound, but nevertheless the band continued the carnage. They played tracks from their debut album "My Dark Symphony", and at the end of the set, gave in to the crowd’s demand of "Who Will Kill The Emperor".

Dying Embrace, the oldest and most veteran band was next. Hailing from Metal capital Bangalore, they are the forerunners of Death/Doom Metal in India. No wonder then, that hordes of people in the crowd were seen wearing Dying Embrace tees, with words "Carrying The Burden Of Doom" printed on the back. This was their 3rd big performance after they resurrected in 2011, and their first with Pritham D’souza on bass. The band stormed through their set, delighting the listeners with their own brand of old school death/doom, and man, do they have supporters galore! Vocalist Vikram Bhatt engaged the crowd with his energy and witty interactions. And no, the band doesn’t seem to be perturbed by age at all. Eccentric Pendulum, apparently the crowd favorites, was up next. By this time, the rain gods had decided to play spoilsport. As I ran for cover with my camera, the enthusiasm among the crowd was infectious. Not giving a shit to the rain, the crowd broke into the first circle pit of the day. The band played a brutally tight set, including tracks from their album ‘Winding the Optics’, and showed the world why they were the Wacken Metal Battle winners last year. It was starting to get dark by the end of their set. And it was the turn of Kryptos to take stage. Branded the flag-bearers of Indian Thrash Metal, they took the stage in their trademark leather jackets and denims. As the local pin-up boy Nolan Lewis took the stage with his ESP guitar that he endorses, the crowd went bizerk. Not into much of gigging, this was the right time and place for Kryptos to unveil a great act, as a follow-up to their recently released album "The Coils Of Apollyon". And with the darkness descended a large number of Metal fans, now making the venue look fuller. There were a couple of more circle pits, and the moshing reached meteoric levels. A fitting end to the Indian line-up of bands!

It was now the time for the co-headliners, Celtic Metal giants Suidakra to take the stage. They were included in the BOA lineup as a replacement for Iced Earth, who were forced to cancel the gig due to visa glitches. Owing to the huge success and fan following Suidakra gathered at the Summerstorm Festival in Feb.2012, the organizers zeroed in on them. But they weren’t taking the visa issues lying down. They put up a petition for signing at the venue, to revolt against denying visa to musicians.

The preparations for Suidakra would take a bit of time, what with the drum kit being replaced and stuff, and it was a breather for the crowd, as well for Anupam Roy, the man behind the flawless sound! Meanwhile, I decided to sift through the stalls, serving everything from burgers and pastries to rolls and coffee. And I got stuck at the merchandise stall! With everything from Kreator tees and key rings to caps and drum-sticks to Kryptos albums on display, this was a treat for the metalheads. And I had to stand in a queue to get in!

On my way back to the main arena, with a cup of coffee in my hand, I narrowly escaped being hit by a football…yes, Bevar Sea’s bassist and a few other musicians were engaged in a game of football! And then I saw Arkadius take the stage for a sound-check, and the crowd was now flocking towards the stage. I followed. As the bagpiper took the stage, he was greeted with screams and Metal horns.

To be honest, I hadn’t heard them before. Few weeks before the show, I told our editor to forward me some of their music. I liked them. But from what I saw live, I am now an ardent fan of them. They’re so lively on the stage, constantly engaging the crowd…they seem to enjoy every bit of their performance! Yeah, their brand of Celtic/ Melodic Death Metal, does sound much better live. Suidakra started of with "Over Nine Waves", and kept belting out their hits one after the other, ending the set with "Wartunes". It started raining by the middle of their set, but the crowd’s enthusiasm never fell short. They kept jumping and moshing in the rain, as a result turning the arena into a slimefest! Towards the end of the set, the drummer Lars decided to crowd-surf, once again raising the energy of the people. And now that they had the crowd’s support and attention, Arkadius announced that he’d be playing with Kryptos the next Sunday, on the eve of the Indo-German festival. This, marked the end of the wonderful, energetic time we had with Suidakra.

And now, the most hyped and most anticipated part of the day was approaching, when the mighty Kreator would take the reigns! The stage was set, what with "Phantom Antichrist" wallpapers forming the backdrop, and close to 2000 screaming fans on the other side of the fence. The excitement was palpable. Right from the organizers, the fans and the media, everyone was waiting with bated breath, to witness history. Suddenly, the stage lights were put off. And then, a mellow light descended on the artworks, and so did the intro of the album "Pleasure To Kill". The screams were turning louder, setting the perfect ambience, and wham!! Kreator started their "Violent Revolution. The crowd instantly broke into multiple moshpits, and we went on a clicking frenzy. The German Thrash Metal legends kept the energy levels up, following it with "Phobia", "Extreme Aggression", and "Hordes Of Chaos", which yielded the most shouts. The whole arena reverberated with Kreator chants, and it was absolute craziness all around. Kreator played an epic set, that was powerful to say the least. They ended the night with "Tormentor", another huge hit, and left the crowd with an aftertaste of what true-blue German thrash is.

What a day it was. BOA was a huge success. And respect to the organizers for putting up such a great show. The administration was impeccable, the sound superb, and the crowd had ample amenities inside the arena. The only glitch, in a stadium that could accommodate 10k people, I expected at least 5k of them. The crowd turnout didn’t do justice to the mind-boggling lineup of BOA. But nevertheless, I had a great time, and I’m pretty sure everyone present at the arena did. I can safely conclude, BOA was a truly complete Metal fest, and it lived up to the name of Wacken Open Air!

]]> (Soham Skyfire) Gig Reviews Fri, 22 Jun 2012 10:25:00 +0000
Quadrivium-A Musical Clinic: Live @ Senapati(Manipur) Quadrivium-A Musical Clinic: Live @ Senapati(Manipur)

Jointly organized by Club Muzik and Hills Sound Reinforcement the first episode of "Quadrivium" was held on the 30th June, 2012 at TNK Conference Hall, Senapati. It was an open event with no restricted passes. With an aim to promote local artist the event was an awareness programme on the changing trend of genre and flexibility of modern technical advancement in the field of music.

Punii, music teacher in a reputed college in Senapati district shared few lessons on vocal octaves along with breathing exercises and techniques. Next was Amang, proprietor of Hills Sound Reinforcement. He shared his knowledge and experiences in sound set ups like stage and main monitor set up, amp and preamp, noise and gain structure, cable connections, analog connection of guitar and sound effects etc. The basic drumming lessons were done by Khunjaoba, a drummer in a well known band from Manipur. Along with few simple physical exercises and easy to understand drum lessons he enacted a powerful presentation on modern drumming. Showing some of his techniques and experience along with his band's guitarist and bassist the team was one of the best favorite of the day. The later session ended with a jam session by individuals, bands and those interested in sharing their experiences.

Between the transitions of the resource persons it was Connie Leivon (the first lady of Amang) and Baby, vocalist in a well known local band who did the fill ups with songs of their choices. The organizers are planning for it's second edition soon!

Reviewed by: Lukhendro Keisham

]]> (Pravin) Gig Reviews Thu, 05 Jul 2012 06:30:19 +0000
U180 Music Concert By LiveJam-Live @ Alliance Francaise(New Delhi) U180 Music Concert By LiveJam-Live @ Alliance Francaise(New Delhi)

U180 is back after a successful last year. As always as they say that it’s more than a concert, this time they came forward raising awareness and voice against "child abuse", yes the same topic which came into much limelight after the hugely popular “Satyamev Jayate” which is hosted by Amir Khan. Supporting the cause they have Barefaced Liar, Cindrella Prakash (of Satyamev Jayante fame) and their very own LiveJam Band playing for them and also a gang of bikers who called themselves "Bikers For Good" came forward. ("Bikers For Good" is a bunch of bikers who works like an NGO and believes in making a difference to the world on two wheels and thus trying to improve the reputation of the bikers in the country as socially responsible citizens)

For those who don’t know about U180, it’s an annual tour organised by LiveJam, founded by Bonny Andrews in 2005 in a small town of Kerala. Since then it has come a long wayorganising music festivals and school and campus tour, thus outreaching the youths and raising awareness among them about various issues that is poisoning the society. Bonny Andrews who also front the LiveJam Band, believes that music is the language that youths understand, and so through his music he wants to spread a message of clean and healthy environment among all the youths.

The concert takes place at Alliance Francais, a quite unusual venue for a Rock concert. The sitting capacity of the hall is about 50-60 people which was full packed and some more were sitting/standing on the stairs and most of them are wearing blue showing support for the cause.

First on stage were BFL, they played a tight extended set of more than half an hour, playing some originals from their debut album and covers. Although I missed the first half of their set, but was in time to catch them while they started to play their original (I heard that BFL started with some The Beatles covers). With powerful riffs and soulful vocals they certainly were the heaviest and undoubtedly the best act of the evening. For two of their songs including “Glow” which a personal favourite, BFL is accompanied by Darshan, a guest violinist to add more flavour to their act. It could have been truly mesmerising only if the soundman haven’t screwed it up when Darshan was playing an extended solo and the sound of the violin was almost off during the whole time. Shashank Bhatnagar (Undying Inc) also joined them onstage for an Oasis cover of Wonderwall.

After BFL came the main artist for the evening, Cindrella Prakash. She was welcomed onstage with a clip from the episode of Satyamev Jayante, in which she appeared. Cindrella, who is a hindi gospel singer was accompanied onstage by the LiveJam Band, with whom she played two of her songs from her album “Mehfuz Vani”. Onstage it was more than just music for her as she shared her terrible experience and how she came out of it and how much she believed in God and how Jesus helped her in healing her wounds. Talking about her music it was nice and slow and exactly how Gospel Rock should sound. With perfect backup from the LiveJam Band and her beautiful voice her act is actually quite peaceful.

Next onstage the LiveJam Band is joined by their original frontman and the founder of LiveJam, Bonny Andrews. They also played two songs, but one thing for sure after a peaceful act by Cindrella they sure bring out all the energy everyone was saving. Bonny played the first song with a helmet on dedicating it to the bikers and in the next and the last one he made sure that everyone goes back with some crazy memories. The crowd which was seated for the whole evening were on their feet, while some of them are onstage (including me), dancing and singing and headbanging to their music. Their sound is more like Classic Rock 'N' Roll and the way they performed that evening made me waiting to experience more of them.

All in all, the concert was a decent one where everyone had a nice time with some good music and a heartfelt story and also I believe is a successful one in terms of the message they wanted to spread through it, which I’m very sure reached the hearts of everyone present at Alliance Francais that evening.

Later they distributed CD’s of Cindrella’s album “Mehfuz vani” to everyone present there and also as scheduled she was supposed to go on a bike ride with "Bikers For Good".

You can check out some more pics of the event here.

]]> (Chitraranjan Gogoi) Gig Reviews Thu, 05 Jul 2012 04:49:27 +0000