- Date 2nd June, 2012
- Venue YAC Range Ground, Imphal(Manipur)
- Bands The Wishess (Imphal, IN) Cleave (Imphal, IN) Rubicons (Imphal, IN) Digital Suicide (Guwahati, IN) Magdalene (Aizawl, IN) Noiseware (Pune, IN)
- Photo Courtesy Himat Munindrajit
- Event By Club Muzik Events
Monsoon Beats (2012) is a non competitive Rock music event organized and managed by Club Muzik Events under the banner "Rage Against Crime". It was a protest against various crimes related to different sections of the society. Held on the 2nd of June, 2012 it featured Noiseware of Pune(Maharashtra), Magdalene of Aizwal(Mizoram) and Digital Suicide of Guwahati(Assam) alongside Rubicons, Cleave and The Wishess from Imphal(Manipur).
Cleave introduced the event with an instrumental, "Overture" by Dream Theatre. It was the appetizer.
The Wishess was the first band of the day. They brought forward Metallica with "Enter The Sandman" and took "Back In Black" by AC/DC. Thompson's fine guitar work at "No More Lie" by the legendary Iron Maiden was an eye pick. They ended with an original, "We Are Stronger". Bishi Thounaojam, vocalist of the band never had a better gig till date.
A countdown from five and Rubicons sprang out among the haze of the deep stage lights. The band is a unique figure of friendship and family bonds. Baby, the lady behind the mic was strong and confident alongside her brother Shivraj, the lead guitarist. Reaching out with "Crush Crush Crush" and "That's What She Get" by Paramore fans roar out their singer instinct to the familiar tunes. "My Favorite Car" was the band's original before winding up their slot with "Let The Flame Begin" by Paramore.
Cleave began their day with "Princes Of Arabia", one of their most exclaimed composition. Bipin's 7-String was a flame thrower with prickling swift melodies in "Incepting Me Own". The band was a fitting tribute to some of the forgotten genres of Rock/Metal. Cheering noises of "Cleave, Cleave" including few sweet voices around proved the band's popularity and familarity in this part of the country. A rush of adrenaline as the drum and the vocal picked up in "Instently Silent". It was a tonic experience.
The alternative, experimental and various-rock depicting Digital Suicide was the first prime time band of Monsoon Beats(2012). Denial Lathangsa, the vocal-guitarist of the band was on fire in his signifying Khaki uniforms. Unexpected and unknown to the Imphal crowds they clear up all the doubts of being just a Rock band but good band. And not that they play originals but plays them carefree. Deepak Borah's distorted bass tone and Ratan's well timed punches thrashed the fans towards the front barricade. Watching the band: Never under estimate a three piece band.
Digital Suicide started with "Digital Life", then "Ninja" and followed by "Third World Superstars". "Democrazy" was their next pouring out crazy sparks of social messages. Their last was the funky "Overdrive". Daniel doing the solo parts at "Overdrive" with his knees on floor was a cherishing memory to carry back home.
Meeting the band after the show it was the superb hospitality of Imphal which rings up first on their mind. Monsoon Beats(2012) was their first visit in Imphal (Manipur) and they couldn't have had a better time, the band commented. Though the crowds were not familiar with their originals they sang and danced along till the end, a very positive response from the fans present that day. The band quoted, "sadly we couldn't see much of Imphal as it was a short trip. But as soon as we landed in Guwahati the band was absolutely sure that we need to visit Imphal again very soon."
A message from Digital Suicide: "We are three guys who are proud of our land, our nation, our art. Violence and insurgency has left our beautiful land, once peaceful region shattered and disturbed. We have seen lives of innocent friends and families snatched away before our own eyes. We need to rise our voice yes, but not at the expense of our brother's and sister's lives. We don't just want to limit our message to our songs, we believe the youth is the only way out for us to get out of this mess. And the modern, educated youth needs to be united. We want to form a huge collective of young, proactive, dynamic, artistic, creative young minds of our North East India region who can take a vision forward and inspire generations to come. We truly believe our music and our band is a tool for us and we plan to get involved with like minded individuals, organizations, even the government and keep bouncing fresh innovative means of spreading awareness and information about our roots, our potential and our future. We will raise our voice with our guitars and not guns this time." An amazing band the North East people are blessed with.
Next was Magdalene, one of the biggest fan following band in the country. Starting with "Life Beyond Death" the fans were forced to sing along with the band. They were melodious, elegant and well experienced in the true sense of the word. Along with good tunes, stylist guitar works and breath taking music videos they were regarded as the best melodious band in the entire North East region. Victor, the guitarist-manager of the band announched a band's DVD in the making and are on process of collecting materials starting from the Imphal's gig. The band's photographer which they brought with them had a hard time not to miss out any special moments.
The second set list of Magdalene was a cover. But the fans were for something else. With screaming request for "Save Me", a very popular original the band was unarmed to listen to the whole crowd. The entire crowd took out their cell phones and did the waving torch in "Save Me". An unforgettable sight with the volunteers having a rough time controlling the fans trying to break pass the front barricade.
Earlier Magdalene's flight was cancelled due to bad weather on the 1st of June. As a result they reached Imphal on the day of the event. In another story the band left a guitar at Guwahati airport which was planned for Monsoon Beats(2012). Later on the day the drummer left the bass paddles inside the transport van. Luckily they were recovered by the organizers before the show. Though many a luck not favoring the band for Imphal the band didn't show any sign of restrains while performing on stage. The fans got what they deserved. Along with a musical history of more than a decade they shared their experiences and similarities among Manipuri's and Mizo's. "Hope North East becomes a peaceful and well developed region in near future." commented Victor while meeting the band.
No more muddy mospit, no more crowd surfing and no more headbanging, it was the moment of the headlining act of the day. Sickled with 8-strings Noiseware began reaping with their original, "23". The crowds were unarmed as they see the beast roar in front of them, everyone was star-struck. This first ever full 8-string band of the country rippled Imphal city with electrifying Djent noise, heart storming compositions and power stage act. The band was a clear example of how a tight Metal band sounds on live acts.
But everything was short lived as their slot was cut short to only two songs due to restricted concert hours. They wind up Monsoon Beats(2012) with "Smooth Criminal" (@21:37 hr.). Disappointment erupted among the fans but were all in vain. Some even stayed still almost half an hour screaming, requesting for one more.
The band's full set list for Imphal was "Intro", "Eightware", "23", "G-String", "Neec For Sleep", "Maut Ki Ungli", "Flicker" and "Smooth Criminal". As stated by the band they were pleasantly surprised by the hospitality and the level of professionalism Club Muzik Events showed. Sharing the event as a thoroughly well thought and executed one with all the artist being treated really well ensuring their comfort the band carried back plesent memories of Imphal. With a strong believe that the fans make the band and not the other way round they are always on the go to do things in a special or a different way for the fans. The small hiccup being that the band couldn't play the full set planned for Imphal and they deeply disappoint themselve for the fans who must be wanting more. A make up on the next gig in Inphal is imminent was a promise from the whole band members. Well nothing is real untill its gone.
Few surprises we came accross while meeting the band were:
- Though formed and based in Pune (Maharastra)not a single member of Noiseware is a Maharastranian.
- They listen mostly to pop, dance, trans and Bollywood music apart from their mainstream metal dose.
- The band is the country's first complete band powered by 8-strings.
- Kaushik Sinha, manager of Noiseware who accompanied the band on Monsoon Beats is a Bishnupriya, who has a very close historical link to the Manipuris. He was basically from Assam, now living in Pune.
Pointing towards social awareness the Club Muzik Events contributed 10% of the ticket sale amount to two children homes each in Imphal(East) and Imphal(West) districts of Manipur. It was a great response from some of the prominent social and youth organizations of the state in associating the event as an awareness campaign against various crime happening in the country.
No any untoward incidents were reported during the event under the jurisdiction of the Club Muzik Events. With not even a single armed security personal seen inside the venue the fans enjoyed the evening without any uneasiness. It was an event with no any hiring from outside state, with no any financial drain from its native. Though the whole event is a sponsored one the organizers made it a low profile. Free from any political or organizational attachments, without draining anything to outside state in organizing and with no any mention of sponsoring firms Monsoon Beats(2012) created a great example of economic consciousness to the citizen of Manipur. It was a showcase of Mannipur's best in sound, stage lightings, video crew, online streaming, truess stage structure etc, all of it's own.
The Club Muzik Events thanked the fans, bands, co-ordinators, supporters, licencing authorities, partners and everyone who helped in making the event an extravagence. Check out the pics of Monsoon Beats!
Reviewed by: Lukhendro Keisham
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