To all the metal/rock aficionados out there, it’s festive time this month with bands such as Goddess Gagged and Zehen performing in Manipal!
In an exclusive, ManipalBlog caught up with the people who are at the very centre of this pulsating phenomenon. Meet Anirudh Mehta, a producer/guitarist and Songwriter at Zehen. What is his take on the rock scene in Manipal, and on Goddess Gagged performing here on 25th of January?
MB:As a fan, how excited are you about Goddess Gagged performing in Manipal on 25th?
Anirudh:I heard about them a few months ago. Heard their album Resurfaces last month and really liked it. Plus Zorran is a brilliant producer so it was a win for me musically and production wise. Really looking forward to them playing here.
MB:Which song in your opinion, is their best performance as a band
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MB:Coming to your own band, Zehen, how different are you from Goddess Gagged?
Anirudh: As for Zehen, we wanted to tryout something different. We play what we like and not what people expect us to play. We like to experiment with our sound and involve various instruments. We’ve had tabla, sitar, violin and flute in our songs, whatever sounds good to us. Also I’m a big electronica fan so there are a few electronic samples here and there.
MB:What was your inspiration to form a rock band? What drove you guys to form one?
Anirudh:Well I started with my first instrument, keyboards at a very young age. With no formal lessons I pretty much learned how to play it on my own. Then out of boredom learnt the guitar too. Seriously I wanted to be a musician since I was a kid! So was always playing around with different sounds and instruments.
MB:How is the current metal/rock scene in Manipal?
Anirudh:The current scene in Manipal is not as good as Delhi or Mumbai but definitely improving by the year. There are a quite some bands here and some really good musicians!
MB:Is it any different from the day you joined?
Anirudh:Well its a lot different from when I joined in 4 years back. At first we had to organize our own gigs and manage everything from sponsorship to publicity and ticket sales. Now we have gigs happening quite often. Also I formed an event organization three years back to do the same and we’ve done some really good gigs.
Sponsors really need to look into Manipal as a prospective area for investment because it’s a small town with a huge student population!
MB:Which rock band was your favourite growing up?
Anirudh:I’ve idolized a lot of bands since childhood. Can’t really pick one here but I’d go with the Foo Fighters as my all time favorite band.
MB:If you had an opportunity to perform with one of the top rock bands around, which would you choose and where would you like to perform?
Anirudh:Well we’ve played with some big names in India like Parikrama and Them clones. We’re playing with Junkyard Groove on the 28th and we’d love to play with Indus Creed, Pentagram, Indian Ocean and Avial if given a chance. A dream come true if we get to play with the Foo Fighters or Porcupine Tree! Ah! Then I could die peacefully!
As for my personal favorite venue to perform in India, I’ll go with Blue Frog (Mumbai) for their sound and ambiance and Palace Grounds ‘coz its a pretty cool open air venue.
MB:What are your plans for the future and what can your fans expect from you guys?
Anirudh:We’re self producing our songs at the moment so expect some really cool stuff to be out soon! Also we’re looking at playing different venues and cities this year…so if you see us missing classes regularly, don’t be surprised! We’d be kicking off live somewhere! Lol!