Kryptos + Blakc
Kryptos are thrash metal band from Bangalore. They recently released their 3rd album “Coils of Apollyon”.
You recently released your 3rd album, “Coils of Apollyon”. How has the response to the album been so far?
The response has been great so far. We’ve received some really awesome plaudits from most people who bought the album. Sales have been great and there are still a lot of places in India that we the album still has to reach so there’s more to look forward to. Plus the worldwide release will happen in a couple of months so the album should really take off once that happens.
You will be performing at the In Flammen Open Air 2012 in July, are there any more confirmed gigs in Germany/Europe?
We’re working on a few more as we speak so if things go well we should have about 4-5 gigs lined up while we’re there. But our main aim is to hit Europe again next year for a fully packed and substantially long tour in a dirty van with lots of beer and bratwurst.
What can we expect from Kryptos at Bangalore Open Air?
We’re going to put on one hell of a gig that’s for sure. We’re playing ‘The Coils of Apollyon’ almost in it’s entirety with a few older favourites thrown in so expect a lot of leather, denim and sweat on stage.
Kreator are one of your influences and you will be sharing the stage with them. Tell us a bit about thoughts in the same.
It’s an honour to open for them of course. They’re one of the greatest metal bands ever and it will be fucking awesome to maybe share a few beers with them, especially Mille Petrozza and hopefully I can get a lot of my stuff signed. I saw them live at Wacken in 2005 and they absolutely destroyed so I’m expecting another neck breaking show from them.
What are you looking forward to at the gig?
Just about everything. The bands, the merch stalls, the metal battle, hanging out with a lot of friends, getting wasted and banging our heads to some killer metal music. Times like these are few and far between in this country so better make the most of it. Fuck everything else and just have an absolute blast.
Blakc are an ambient/hard rock band from Mumbai. They released their second album “MotherEDland” a couple days ago.
You are a few days away from releasing your second album, “Motheredland”. Tell us a bit about the album with regards to the concept.
So Shawn and I were sitting on my terrace and we had a very enlightened moment. We were talking about how this city is going to the dogs because there’s just so many issues, your traffic, infrastructure, lack of live music venues, rampant and blatant corruption and we got really fried. I landed up saying that this isnt a motherland, this is a motherEDland. Mothered is highly slang, means a very fucked up state of affairs. The album concept is talking about how the reason this the scene is so messed up is because we are all sheep, blindly doing and following but never stopping to question. And that’s what this album is about, asking questions. Some of the songs are a carry over from the Choking On A Dream time, talking about love, and I think sex 😀 but the rest are all in some way or the other connected to this album concept
What was your approach for the songwriting of album? How long did it take?
The better part of 3 years. Like I said , a couple of the songs are from that time, where we were experimenting with our sound, but not really pushing the boundaries. However, there are 5-6 songs on the album which marked a huge change in the way we make music. This time around lyrics were mostly written after the songs were made, so Shawn has really used the music to give color and context to his mostly ambiguous lyrics. We have also focused a lot on making good sounding music, which everyone in the band is satisfied with. As a result we’ve taken longer, but the music sounds pretty much like what we want it to, as individuals and as a band. The music has become both really heavy and really ambient, cos we really like both ends. I believe that while we will always be influenced by grunge from the DIY point of view, and the mad performances and lifestyle, our music has veered off to something more alternative/progressive/whatever. So I created a new tag called Hard/Ambient rock. COS I CAN
The album was recorded at Yashraj studios. How was it recording a “Rock” album in a “Bollywood” Studio?
When I walked into that studio for the first time, I was met with this presence who has since grown to be one of the major influencers on this album (we don’t have too many, cos we’re a very strong minded band) That presence was Shantanu Hudlikar. From that day, there was never a thought about anything Bollywood. Yes we were in Yashraj, but that man is a rocker from a long ways back and he really took time out with us whenever we needed. So the comfort level was massive. Having said that, we also had the advantage of working with someone who makes music sound AWESOME, irrespective of the genre. We believe we got someone who understood where we were coming from, and who had the knowledge to translate that into the album we have today. We’re really happy with it, thank you Yashraj and Shantanu for that
The album has bee mixed by Shantanu Hudlikar (Yashraj) and Keshav Dhar (Skyharbor). How was it working with them? What influence did they have on the album?
It’s funny, and most people were like, why 2 producers. When we first started working on the album, Keshav was the only guy we were really thinking of. His music with Skyharbor has the heaviness, the beautyness, layers the whole package. And the way he treated his music as a producer is something we wanted to take advantage off. We’re really heavy and really ambient and we wanted someone who could understand both sides of the coin. Keshav gave a direction to our music that we wanted to take. He and Shantanu worked on it for a couple of days where Shantanu really gave life to the sound. Shantanu gets into the music he’s working on and uses his wealth of ‘what sounds good’ knowledge to push the music that last 10% In a line, we wanted Keshav’s sensibilities and vision, and Shantanu’s musical and technical expertise and we definitely got that on this album.
How does the album compare sound wise to your debut album, “Choking on a Dream” ?
We’ve decided to hell with the verse chorus funda for starters. Highly constricting. Shorter guitar solos 😀 but more guitar parts and use of random effects. More intricate drum and bass parts. We’ve been collectively influenced by Karnivool, Porcupine Tree, Tool, Opeth, Scribe and individually by a lot more, across all genres. This album represents each band member searching for their own sound, and a band coming to terms with 5 individual sounds and making it one cohesive aural experience. The first album we wrote in 6 months cos we were easily satisfied. This time around there’s a lot more fights and a lot more questioning, but the music is definitely satisfying us way more, and we hope, our fans ?
You released your first video for the first single of the album, “Untitled” last month which was shot by Srinivas Sunderrajan of Enter Guerilla Films. How you come up with concept for it?
The song is about loving, and losing. With that in mind we went to Mr. Vaas. He is another one of the stars we had a chance to work with alongwith his team. He took the idea and told us 2 things. First, we could make a predictably soppy video (there’s a line saying I wanted the world should’ve never let you go. You get what I’m saying?) trying to recreate something like a November Rain. Yes we might get more first time views, but would we be setting ourselves apart as a band and a creative force. Not necessarily. And secondly, we could put in 10 grand and make a run of the mill video, or we could just spend more money and get something we could be proud off, and something our fans could be proud of as well as satisfied with. The logic appealed, we let Vaas interpret the video his way, and produce it to the best of his abilities. We’re really happy with the way it came out, the response from our friends and fans has been positive across the board. If you want to understand what the concept exactly was, you’ll have to ask Vaas, cos right now all of us in the band have our own interpretation. I think the song is about Shawn the panda who really loved and wanted this one girl, Shawn thinks the video is about a bunch of guys who want to say that it’s alright to dress up and play with life size dolls 😀
What was the experience like considering it’s your first video?
Massive. Seeing a song become a concept, seeing the concept taking shape on set and then finally having a life of its own in HD is a surreal feeling. And when we saw it on VH1 for the first time we were like YAAWTFOMG!!!!! Something like that, maybe it was just me. We’re now exposed to another art form that is really closely interlinked with the music and we now want more? and we’ve also got the chance to see first hand how people react to this kind of stuff. Its been an extremely enjoyble learning experience for sure
What are your thoughts on the Madras High Court order blocking file sharing sites video sharing sites like Vimeo?
Fuckem. I believe corporates shouldn’t use legal recourse to address market change. Look what happened with Napster, one company become the torchbearer and today music is all over the place. The people will eventually win, but why make us do illegal shit to get there. The government and judiciary has a responsibility to first be AWARE, and then to take action IN THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE PEOPLE. I hope Anonymous rips a few holes sometime soon. This is what MotheredLand is about, asking questions and if you get the wrong answer, doing something about it. Shout out to all the rockers and metalheads, you don’t need to carry placards or set shit on fire (sorry bhanuj) but support these movements however you can. And don’t let the rage die, it just means you’re getting old.
What are your plans for the rest of the year ? Album tour?
I don’t know about the rest of the year but post the Mumbai launch we’ll be doing between 3 and 6 city launchs. We’re not ready to let this album concept die down so easily as its scope is not restricted to any time period. So we’ll maybe try and do a few sit down acoustic scenes, let fans chill with the band and understand what the music and album is about. Definitely put out another video. And keep gigging like…….um… like giggers
Any Final words?
Why not ask why