Bangalore Open Air 2015 was bigger and louder than any of
its previous edition, taking place on 6th June, with Napalm Death,
Belphegor, Inquisition and many other acts on the billing.
Bangalore Open Air 2015 also has a week-long pre-gig build
up, with various Indian metal acts playing at various venues across the city.
We decided to visit these nights and check out the acts on stage. This review
covers day 3 and 5 of the pre-gig party. The first two days are reviewed in
Part-1. For later days, keep a watch for upcoming posts, Part-3 and the main
AVE SATANAS! The third day of the pre-gig festivities was
dedicated to the cult of Black Metal. With Bangalore traffic and rains both
hindering my journey, I reached the venue just as the opening act Anti from
Mysore were finishing their set. From the very little I heard, the band was
playing some good raw black metal, but still had some distance to go in
perfecting their art.
Antakrit - Live at Pre-Gig Bangalore Open Air 2015. Image by Vishal 'Clickography'.
Up next on stage were Antakrit from Bangalore, having never
heard of the band before they were the biggest surprise for me. As I was just
settling into a couch the band began its blistering raw massacre. Unable to
resist, and out of respect to such top notch musicianship, I had to go stand
and give the band a proper ear. A band I’m going to closely follow from this
Next up were war monikers of Stark Denial from Mumbai. The
band played another tight set, and their war themed black metal left a good
impression on the crowd. Next up were Dark Desolation, and as soon as they took
stage, one knew that the night was going to get darker. The band delivered a
top notch set, with special mention to the vocalists whose screams and growls
seem to be bellowing straight from hell.
The last act for the night were 1833 AD from Delhi. I was
really looking forward to watching the band live, as back in the days their
debut album “My Dark Symphony” was the first time I had come across black metal
from India. The album remains one of my favorites and gets a few spins from
time to time. Sadly due to time constraints, the band had to play a short set,
with a very quick sound-check. The band played their originals to perfection
while ending on a high note with a blackened version of ‘For Whom the Bell
Tolls’, with the crowd joining in!
A great night of black metal overall..
1833 AD - Live at Pre-Gig Bangalore Open Air 2015. Image by Vishal 'Clickography'.
After braving the rain for 3 days, it finally took its toll
on my health. Sadly I missed the fourth night. From what I gathered, all the
bands played some good tight sets. Hopefully, I will catch them live sometime
in the near future.
The day of the Wacken Metal Battle – India, Bangalore Zone
prelims. To everyone’s surprise, the night began as a bunch of 12 year old kids
took stage and started belting out some good old heavy rock originals! The band
is full of potential, and can definitely go a long way ahead! Special mention
to their drummer, who was hitting all the right notes throughout!
The first band of the Metal Battle were Amorphia. Having
witnessed the band before at a band competition (at Dhanak 2014), I knew of the
talent these guys brought forward. The band right from the word go, played some
fine heavy and fast thrash metal. It’s great to see such fine thrash acts
coming out of Kerala, after the amazing debut by Chaos. The next band on the
billing were Counterplot Theory. The band played a good tight set, impressing
the crowd with their fine musicianship. Although, I did feel that the stage presence
could be improved upon a bit.
Amorphia - Live at Pre-Gig Bangalore Open Air 2015. Image by Centuries of Sin.
Next up were the final act of the competition, The Down
Troddence. The band has received universal acclaim after their debut release
last year, as the band went on to play at Bangalore Open Air 2014.
Surprisingly, the band came on stage as a 4 piece outfit, missing their
keyboardist and lead guitarist. To my surprise, the band pulled off their performance
surprisingly well, given how synth inspired their original tracks are. Deservingly,
the band went on to win the Bangalore zone prelims of the competition.
Next up were the headlining act, Eccentric Pendulum. The
last time I had checked out the band was back in 2011 when they had released
their album. So it came as a major surprise, when I realized how much the band’s
sound has changed since then. The band's early death and thrash influences have paved way to a more focused metalcore sound, with the progressive influences shining through.
This had both the good and the bad. The new tracks sounded quite heavy and
amazing, while the minor alteration to the older tacks left me with a bit of
mixed thoughts. Nevertheless, the talent the band possesses is still intact,
and I’m looking forward to what direction and sound does the band bring out in
the next studio outing.
Eccentric Pendulum - Live at Pre-Gig Bangalore Open Air 2015. Image by Centuries of Sin.
With just the pre-party and the main Bangalore Open Air
left, the crowd enthusiasm and excitement, was reaching its peak levels..