Iran is not a country known for metal music, so when I got an email about Death metal band Azooma, I knew I had to feature them here.
The band are from Mashhad, the second largest city in Iran. They released their first EP “A hymn of the vicious monster” after being together for nearly a decade now. I spoke to about their vocalist Shahin Vaqfipour about their EP , recording it and being a metal band in Iran.
“It feels great. Because you do the thing which you know is right at your heart, No matter how wrong it might seem in other ones’ opinions.” exclaimed Shahin about being in a metal band in Iran. “It is something we know deep inside and we really love what we do.”
In a country where music is banned and you can get arrested for having long hair, it would definitely not be easy to meet like minded musicians and start a band. “We are lucky because we have known each other since we were teenagers” said Shahin about how the band was formed “I think, We got absorbed to each other by our minds, feelings and our thoughts. Not just the band members but everyone who has helped us through our journey which is a never ending story by itself.” The band consists of Ahmad Tokallou (guitar), Farid Shariat (bass) and Saeed Shariat (drums).
Last month the band put out their first release, a concept EP titled “A Hymn Of The Vicious Monster”. “It is about a person who thinks he is a victim of situations and all his misery is due to a monster who he has always afraid of and get chased by” explains Shahin. “But slowly it becomes clear to him that, he is the monster that he has been afraid of all his life. It is in everyone. Everyone has this opportunity to turn to a monster. The true power is not to let this essence, this instinct grow.”
“The whole process took almost a year and a half. We specified the story and we gathered in our practicing place and told each other our ideas and opinions about it. The music and lyrics has created and made during those sessions and got matched together. We recorded guitar, Bass and vocals lines in our rehearsal room and the drum parts in Minus One studio” Shahin describes the songwriting and recording process for the EP.
The EP was mixed and mastered by Iranian producer Ehsan Imani in Mixter Blaze Studio. “It’s really enjoyable and great to work with him” said Shahin about working with Ehsan. “Because he listens carefully to you and get closed to your ideas and do exactly what you have in your minds.”
“A Hymn Of The Vicious Monster” has been released by Xtreem Music, a label that recently has been releasing bands from countries not known for it’s metal scene. “We have this great friend, Mohsen who is the Chief Editor of Metal Shock Finland and he runs Stargazer Consultancy. We told him that we seek a good record label company for releasing our EP and signed a contract with him. He found this great company, Xtreem Music, which supports and has interests in real music.” said Shahin about how they got signed to Spanish label.
The band last year co-headlined the Persian Metal Fest 2013 along with french death metal band Gorod. “We had listened to Gorod songs and albums before Persian Metal in 2013 and we really liked them and were interested to perform with them and meet them.” said Shahin about the festival. “It was a really great experience and we learned many things from them.”
Some of the metal bands from Iran recommended by Shahin are Ehsan Imani ‘s Rager Blaze, Kahtmayan, 5GRS, Scox, Mordab, Acrovaya, Reza Rostamina, Arsames, Master of Persia, Armaiti.
“Thank you for giving us your time and we hope to see Metal fans in India soon. Be sure that you will hear more about AZOOMA. Keep on going. Keep Metal alive. Stay crazy” said Shahin ending our interview.
Listen to “A Hymn Of The Vicious Monster” below