Tag Archives: Bombay

1833 AD’s Nishant Abraham: “The usage of chord progressions that typically define Black Metal, come to me naturally”

1833 ad band logoAhead of 1833 AD‘s headlining gig in Bombay, Nishant Abraham – frontman of Indian black metal act 1833 AD talks about the challenges faced by the band, their 2012 debut record ‘My Dark Symphony‘, why they love playing in Bombay and tackles a few other questions that need a credible black metal band’s opinion.

Read on…

Imagine a world completely devoid of black metal. There is no reference point and such a genre doesn’t exist. Would 1833 AD still have existed.

NishantTo a certain extent, yes, but I wouldn’t have been so creative to term it Black Metal. I would have gone with something cheesy; Dark Metal, at best. The darkness that Black Metal creates, like any other form of music, is because of the arrangement of notes. And the usage of such chord progressions that typically define Black Metal, come to me naturally. Instrumentally, would we have sounded similar? Definitely. In terms of vocals? No chance in hell. I came from a very mellow vocal background and wouldn’t have considered screaming into a microphone even in my wildest dreams.

Three members in Delhi, and one member in Bangalore. Two different cities. Considering the obvious issues of management and lesser jamming sessions you guys still manage to pull off a tight gig. What does it take to make that happen.

Nishant – It is tough. With the distance, we have to practice regularly on our own to ensure we know our parts like the back of our hand so that it all comes together as one fluid piece when we perform. We feel it’s important to jam together at least once before a show. For this, we usually try and reach the city a day before. Sometimes it’s on the day of the show. Once, all we had time for was on-stage sound check. It was the biggest challenge we ever faced but we pulled through and were extremely proud of ourselves.

1833 ad black metal

A band wants to cover obscure underground songs that they truly believe in. And often it is overheard that the choice should’ve been a mass favorite. Your thoughts.

Nishant – Hmm, interesting question. Maybe it comes down to the band’s ideology. Are they trying to win points with the crowd? Or are they showcasing their music and influence? Personally, I wouldn’t mind either and we have done both in the past. We would do a song that no one knows if we feel the audience could use a good lesson in Old School Black Metal, but we would never play a song that we don’t believe in just to please the audience.

I’m aware of the staggering numbers that went into the production of ‘My Dark Symphony’. Resulting in a product that is top notch. No compromises there. What was going through the band’s mind when it came to the financial aspects of recording the album.

nishant abraham 1833 adNishant – How are you aware of that?

I know everything (laughs). Anyway…

Nishant – We had spent a lot of money just to get the music ready. But the concept we went with was incomplete without the artwork. Did we really have to spend so much on artwork? Maybe. Maybe not. Why settle? We wanted to create something that was never done before. The artwork has a vague storyline going on which is a mystery in itself. Trying to understand what each page means, how it possibly relates to a song, division of the chapters, et cetera are some of the alluring things My Dark Symphony has to offer. Something our fans could buy and feel that they got their money’s worth. And I think we did that with My Dark Symphony. If you are reading this and have no idea what we’re talking about, shame on you!

Alright, there are people who take 1833 AD’s music seriously, and that’s where the true fanbase comes into picture. Any upcoming gigs these people should know about.

Nishant – We love our fans! We get emails from our fans asking us for lyrics, tabs, minus tracks, etc. Everything we do, every penny we’ve ever spent, it all seems worth it with each of these emails.

We are playing two shows at the end of this week. Chandigarh on the 26th and Delhi on the 27th. We are also talking to few organizers in Jaipur and Pune. If something materializes, we’ll announce it on Facebook.

Bombay is going to play host to the third edition of Black Metal Krieg (BMK) event on the 8th of December, 2013. Sign-off the interview by telling us how do you plan to captivate your audience at BMK 3.

Nishant – We love playing Mumbai. The fact that it’s BMK just makes it more special. Getting to share the stage with so many other Indian Black Metal bands is a great privilege and we look forward to it. The Mumbai crowd returns the passion with which we perform. We will be throwing in a few surprises, some of the unforgotten classics perhaps? It’s gonna be wild!

1833 ad band live

1833 AD is:

Nishant Abraham on Vocals/Guitars
Rahul Mehalwal on Guitars
Sushmit Mazumdar on Bass
Raghav Sehgal on Drums



If you want to contact the band directly, shoot an email to: 1833ad@gmail.com.

[ Black Metal Krieg 3 (featuring 1833 AD, Stark Denial, Solar Deity, Cosmic Infusion, Winter Gate, Dark Desolation, Winter Prophecy, Dormant Inferno and Spiked Crib) is the only event in India that pays tribute to black metal. The event is going to demolish a venue in Bombay on the 8th of December, 2013. Stay updated here: https://www.facebook.com/events/626388167400031/ . ]

Also read:

In-depth review of 1833 AD’s debut album ‘My Dark Symphony’

Dormant Inferno’s debut demo ‘In Sanity’ reviewed

2010 article about the Indian Black Metal Scene

gig review : Black Metal Krieg (December, 2010)

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film review : Dhobi Ghat (2011)

Kiran Rao‘s directorial debut portrays certain sections of Mumbai (or, Bombay) in the same light as it is known to us. To do this she takes the help of four characters. Each of them make a connect and a Mumbaikar (or, Bombayite) will definitely find himself/herself in them. Munna (Prateik), Shai (Monica), Arun (Aamir) and Yasmin (Kriti) are the ones being referred to. Their wants and needs are varied, they longings are different, they have some things but that isn’t what gives them wholesome satisfaction. Don’t we all be there at some point or the other?

Shai happens to meet a painter / loner Arun at his show which gets extended to them spending the night together with love making too added to it. This leads to Shai developing strong feelings for Arun as she did sense a chemistry. However, Arun ain’t the relationship type, lives his life like a nomad and keeps changing the place that is called home. This time he ends up in a house on Mohammed Ali Road where he gets hold of some tapes left behind by the previous tenant Yasmin. Begins watching them and we are seen dissolving in the happenings of the tape along with Arun. Munna is a dhobi whose clients include Arun and Shai, is a  king of his own world and his encounters with Shai lead to the disclosure of his dreams, ambitions while he also gets attracted to her.

The woman behind the camera, Kiran Rao works on the details of the characters along with their mannerisms which make us believe that we ain’t the only ones owning the hollowness. Someone else also understands what we go through. The casting seems in place with no complaints for anyone. Many newcomers/actors have been unveiled in the movie and they stand out on their own merit, thanks to the space provided by the script. The obvious highlight of the movie was supposed to be Gustavo Santaolalla‘s score which hasn’t been thrown in enough to talk about.

kiran rao with the cast

How the four characters are dependent on each other even after being completely independent is what Dhobi Ghat is about. The story ends in an incomplete manner much as our lives which can never be complete in the sense of the word. Dhobi Ghat is sans any interruptions with the script taking it’s own time to breathe. While this is not for the regular bollywood buffs as it has a documentary type approach, you might either end up liking the movie or chances are that you might be put off to sleep. Only you can find that out. Dhobi Ghat is definitely worth a try.

Rating : 3.5/5

The last three films reviewed on the blog –

No One Killed Jessica

Break Ke Baad


Ep review : Ayodhya Burns (2010) – Heathen Beast

ep : Ayodhya Burns

artist : Heathen Beast

genre : Black Metal

year : 2010

When a band picks up an issue and gives it a touch of its own art there is not just music but something more to it. It is more like canoodling the thoughts, quoting the expressions and delivering it straight. The Ayodhya issue has been touched by one and all but for us metalheads it was like anything else in our lives. Maybe because it wasn’t said or wasn’t spoken about in a way that we would want to take notice. But don’t get me wrong here. The Ep just makes a point that everything done in the name of Ayodhya issue was worthless. I could not agree less.

This here is a band from Bombay named Heathen Beast – a focused group of three individuals who are ‘unknown’, shun religion and they play black metal. On a normal day these things can get exciting only if the music bit is captivating. Else it would all go down like the issue itself. The contents of their debut Ep Ayodhya Burns has them flipping the coin and already knowing the result. The members go by the names Carvaka (vocals/guitars), Samkhya (bass) and Mimamsa (drums).

The Ep has three well produced tracks – Blind Faith, Religion Genocide, Ayodhya Burns – and is very much Indian in its sound. The opening riff itself will hit you, and the song is Blind Faith. Brutal and melodic in bits and pieces is what the Ep can be described as. The parity between speed, black factor, blast beats, bass playing and vocals is maintained on the Ep. The screeches need to be heard live to be believed, as it is very striking. Heathen Beast is releasing the Ep on twenty sixth of November and it would be available for free download from then on.

Black metal in India coming to a point where there is exclusivity to the genre and a no compromise tag attached to it  is something I want to see before it is too late for me. Same holds true for marijuana getting legalized. Anyways, black metal is slowly picking up with more bands believing in action. And Ayodhya Burns is a fuck yes for lovers of raw and crisp dark music. Welcome, guys!

Rating : 4/5

iRock XXV – a farce

Independence Rock XXV or iRock XXV or whatever it is. Tall claims and even longer wait has resulted in this : The same bands that we have been watching for years, have been performing every now and then are playing at the twenty fifth anniversary of the freedom concert. No, the bands on the list should play but what about the rest of the stuff. Nationwide eliminations, national finale, international finale, and international bands. There are so many more Indian bands that need exposure and have released above expectations albums this very year and all we see on the lineup are the musicians who would anyways be playing somewhere a week before or after this concert.

A website somewhere described this event as the largest Indian band talent hunt and so there is a tag attached to it. It does not require me to highlight the fact that this time iRock is happening just because it has to happen every year. Silver jubilee is supposed to mark the beginning for a better tomorrow, not go back and make things worse than the first year. Had the organizers postponed the event to 2011 with adequate reasons it could still be called iRock XXV, no?

I speak up not just as a blogger but as someone who has supported the scene whether it is buying the cds, merchandise or attending an event even if the only people around me were the organizers. This for me is a disappointment and anything from the iRock stable in the future would have a lower priority. After all this is not a family function that you are inviting your friends to play on the stage. This is fuckin’ Indian rock and if not for the fans then iRock would not have been here today. Making the event free is not going to help the cause, poseurs. And I expect the attendees to tell ‘them’ that we do listen to stuff beyond Creed.

gig review : Dinner is a Lie tour 2010 (Bombay leg) featuring Albatross, Devoid and Nervecell

Witnessing a good metal gig unfold in front of you can get you back in shape. Dinner is a lie tour had Indian metal bands Albatross and Devoid launching their albums and Dubai-based Nervecell breaking bones. After not finding enough people to do so in Bangalore and Hyderabad, I am sure Nervecell was disappointed by the live metal scene in India until they came to Bombay for the last leg of the tour. More than four hundred interested metalheads landed at Blue Frog for this indoor gig.

Blue Frog has been a host to many a gigs that have happened here in the near past and is a venue that leaves you satisfied. Thanks to the free mints at the entry.


Alright, the gig was to begin at 9 p.m. and it started half an hour after that. The venue looked pretty filled and the opening band Devoid was to take the stage. An album launch can be a great high and the proud members of Devoid stood there while the intro to their album was played. Song after song the band played their entire album in order. With their original guitarist Keshav present, the band put up a strong show before the current guitarist Sanju completed their set. While Devoid belted their originals the crowd forgot the fact that there is a tomorrow they have to live for. Getting the otherwise wasted bouncers back to work, there was a maddening response to Devoid complete with crowd and stage surfing. And that is so metal. Sound-wise the band was really tight and on the console was Fali Damania who will be thanked more than once here.


Albatross was next. Debuting in Bombay is quite a task and that showed in the band’s performance. The band played the entire Ep along with a cover song which was Ozzy Osbourne‘s Mr. Crowley. The crowd reacted a bit coldly but the band did get heads bobbing towards the end. Tightening up is all that is needed as no band has ever owned a crowd on their debut.

It was time for the headlining band and Nervecell‘s monstrous members left little space for any non-sense on stage. Making metal instruments seem small and cute because of their personalities, the moment they began I bet even a blind person would have known where the sound is coming from. They were brilliantly brutal and tight and they made it clear what it takes to tour with bands like Deicide and Suffocation.


This is how their setlist looked like :

Flesh and Memories
Human Chaos
Existence Ceased
Vicious Circle of Bloodshed
Bolt Thrower cover

Very loud, these lovers of old school death were impressed by the response they got. Naming Bombay as the metal capital of India was one thing while asking metalheads to mosh unrelentingly and still watchout for each other was another. Many woke up to the beauty of thrash death metal, and credit goes to Nervecell.

Thanks to Gigbox for the gig, Blue Frog for the venue equipped with some great acoustics and light arrangements, Ayan De for the spectacular visuals on the screens, Sahil Makhija, Demonstealer Records and Fali Damania. The sound contract for my marriage as well as my funeral goes to you. All in all it was a fun gig and an experience that will be remembered for the longest time. It is gigs like these that actually make me want to live longer.

[All the saliva-dripping pictures included here have been clicked by Pratika Prabhune (bass, clean vocals – Chronic Phobia)]

Here’s a video of Nervecell playing Demolition at Blue Frog, Bombay.

Voices of Escape

It has been a good six months since I stepped on Bombay soil. The last time it was a week before the release of Belus. As the realization struck me a little late than a normal sane human, I could not book my flight tickets. Travelling tomorrow by Chennai express train’s a/c coach not because of the obvious comfort and peace it offers but the unwanted situation sleeper coach put me in, the last time I voted it above a/c. Read about it here Unexpected And Scary.

Plan is simple. Relax and sleep as much as I can for two weeks, now that there is no fucking need to get up in the morning and travel in the dingy locals of Chennai which they boastfully call as metro. Do they know there is a metro in Delhi and how it looks? I don’t think they do.

I was looking forward to the twenty-fifth edition of iRock that was scheduled to happen in Bombay from thirteenth to fifteenth of August but now that I got to know of the event getting postponed I will have to spend the humdrum independence day at home switching between channels airing Ben Kingsley starrer-Gandhi. I am being deprived of three days of live music. Not a good thing for a live-scene-hungry person. Absurd as it may sound but live metal scene in Chennai is not happening. The closest city I can turn to is Bangalore and that is not close enough.

Schedule for the next two weeks would include some trekking, a gig or two if I am lucky, catching up and some alcohol. Apart from all of that I really do not mind two weeks of Bombay Times. Not at all.

Check this picture of Fenriz I came across over the internet. I think its funny.

gylve fenriz

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Unexpected And Scary

Returning to Bombay from anywhere has never been as painful as this particular journey. It all began with me and my friend picking up our lazy asses on 25th evening to catch a train from Chengalpattu station, Chennai. Travelling by train was a mistake, we went one step ahead and boarded the train with our tickets still not confirmed. And we all have seen how waiting passengers are treated.

Train departed from Chennai at 6 pm and we were told by the lousy ticket examiner that we cannot rest our butts until Tirupati which was four hours away. Disappointed and already tired we started looking around only to realise almost the entire train was to get empty at Tirupati. Relief.

We stopped at one bogie and sat besides a certain Mr. Ramesh Chandra. Was a sweet man aged around 55 and was from Jammu. Told us they are a huge group who had to pay 6K to some guide for a south-tour. I was interested more about the place he hailed from as J&K has always intrigued me. I diverted the conversation

me n Mr. Chandra. extreme hair colors.

to the constant unrest in J&K and wanted his views on the same. Born and brought up in Jammu, Mr. Ramesh – a shopkeeper – told me how badly certain Pakistani muslims in Kashmir want to separate Kashmir from India. Its these particular group of anti-social irrational muslims are responsible for every unrest, and even though Jammu has more of hindu population as opposed to less muslim population in Kashmir, these muslims manage to grab maximum seats in the constituency. They get to call the shots each time. It was nice to hear all this first-hand.

Four hours flew and we did not have a hint of what was to follow. Train halted at Tirupati and all the passengers unboarded except for maybe just two of us. And in no time close to seven hundred bald people took over the entire train. They were supposed all travelling back to Bombay after their annual trip to the bald town. They sure did remind the rich god of Bombay‘s existence in India. Imagine my horror of watching seven hundred bald heads, all travelling  to the same place.

start counting !

At close to 2 pm, one of them offered the two of us a seat so we could sleep. And we immediately surrendered ourselves to our puny eyes. I spent the entire next day (that is 26th) watching them making fun of anyone who was not one of them.

Nevertheless I have managed to complete this seemingly impossible journey back home and I am all set to chill now. Lessons learnt – Get confirmed tickets and make sure nothing religious falls in between my departure and destination points.

Tomorrow is my day

I am taking a much needed break. Forecast for this weekend and the whole next week – escape Chennai. Heading to Bombay on the 25th, i.e. tomorrow. From my experience till now the industry I am part of is unrelenting. Got this break after slogging my ass for almost 4 months now.

Unfortunately I could not save up enough to fly back home. So its going to be one hell of a tiring train journey. Travelling long hours by train has its own advantages and disadvantages. Advantage – all through the journey this beverage termed tea is consumed in excess and at the end of the day you don’t pee you tea. Not funny ? That was stated as an advantage because a well made cup of tea turns me on. Disadvantage – you have a lot of free time which gives your mind enough reasons to think and that is exactly what I am trying to avoid, you do not feel like taking a dump for obvious reasons, and my iPod battery-life is only a couple of hours. Anyways, the rate at which Apple is going battery-free iPods don’t seem far.

What awaits me back home – family, friends and booze. Also Burzum’s next release Belus has leaked, so downloading the same is high on my agenda. Have to steal some time so I can visit Pune for a day to meet some friends. Amidst all this and against my wishes is the painful Holi and a day will get wasted as I cannot step out of the house.

Keeping everything aside, I am going to make the most of the forthcoming week as I know how it is going to be once I am back in Chennai. Its just not the place for me.

Chennai‘s had enough from me. For today. 24 hours to go. Bombay, tujha vadil kaun ?

A place that was German Bakery

This is probably the second place where an attack has taken place and I happened to know the place well. The first place being CST station in Bombay. German Bakery was located in one of the the most happening locations of Pune – Koregaon Park. Many know this area as the den of Osho Ashram. The bakery was situated very close to the ashram. Right opposite the bakery stood this place called Chabad House which was a shelter for Israeli travellers run by an orthodox Jewish sect.

German Bakery, Pune

I frequented the bakery during by stay in Pune between July 2008 and September 2009. The place was small as compared to your average bakery but the ambience and viand was such that it attracted more foreigners than any other place in the vicinity. As for me, German Bakery was less of bakery and more of a place to dawdle with a couple of my douchebag friends. The last time I had been there I remember meeting all of my friends from Pune.

the bakery within

Talking about the size of the bakery, I can only imagine what would be left of it considering the impact of the blast that killed almost 10 and injured so many others.

At this rate I would not be surprised if tomorrow a blast happens when I’m gulping beer somewhere. I don’t see it as  a pessimistic thought. I see it as being realistic.

the bakery today

My Name Is Karthik

Considering the reason I watch any movie, if at all I do is how well its music manages to capture me. I don’t know how effective this is but its been that way for me since the longest time.

This weekend and the weekend after will see two anticipated movies being released. You are right, I am talking about My Name Is Khan and Karthik Calling Karthik. While the former is the product of a film-maker who refuses to hold the camera until Shah Rukh Khan agrees to share his Koffee, the latter is pure charm. Farhan Akhtar is a sack of talent. And need I say Deepika Padukone is looking hotter than ever ?

Getting back to where I began – the music. Both the aforementioned movies have music by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. Something makes me feel that whenever the trio are working with Excel Entertaiment (yea the one owned by Akthar and Sidhwani), the music creates a buzz. They give a little extra. Going by their track record, SEL haven’t done anything impressive off-late barring a Wake Up Sid or maybe a Luck By Chance here and there.

Billu, i desperately need a hit ..

Whereas I am somewhat impressed by the score of Karthik, My Name Is Khan does not seem to get my time. One of the reasons being the teasers. SRK is convincingly irritating. This does not mean the music is bad but it is not going to make me take that extra effort to book my tickets for the same. Even SRK stating that Khan is his best work till date is not going to help. But I will still watch it, as my friends are sparing me the trouble of getting the tickets. Don’t get me wrong. SRK is a prodigious artist and even I liked Swades. But I need to know what made Fox studios be a part of this venture.

meow meow

And with Shiv Sena stalling the release of Khan, is it that Sena is sharing the same feeling over SRK’s appearance in the movie ? – Actually no. But hey that does not make the Sainiks look cool – they are what I call retards.They are retarding the very growth of Bombay. I will write another post sometime praising their stupidity.

heee.. i am 186 years old !

They cannot stop me from watching the movie as I am currently in Chennai, and here in Chennai they won’t find a single poster of My Name Is Khan to tear down. Reason – Wherever there is space you will find the poster of  an awfully repulsive Karunanidhi. Now that is real power !

So yeah, February has something more in store for you than just wail-entines day. And if you have time and money to pick just one flick outta the two then you pretty much know by now which one is worth both. Hello, Karthik here.

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