It’s been a while since Bangalore saw a gig with a line-up as diverse as what we got in Sonic Doom. This happened at Ion Bar and Kitchen (the new metal venue in the city) on Sunday, 26th May. Apart from the variety of genres among those performing, there was also artwork on display, and a stand-up comedian who was part of the event as well.
Aamer Peeran- the opening standup act, was not as entertaining as we would have liked him to be. He could have been funny, but instead, turned out to be quite a joke himself. Maybe stand-up and metal gigs mix only as well as oil and water do, so I will give the guy a thumbs-up for his attempts to keep the audience engaged, and leave it at that.
Crypted was the first band for the evening, and what a way to start! Though they struggled a little with sound, they managed to pull off a very tight set. Their brand of technical death metal was the adrenalin shot to get the audience geared up for what was coming up for the rest of the evening.
1.Inside The Outsider
2. Distorted Thought Association
3. You Are All Diseased
4. The Age Of Hostile Interdependence
5. Flesh Eater
Witchgoat, who seemed to be a crowd favourite, were up next. Thankfully, sound issues had settled by the time they went on stage. Though they were missing Avinash on guitars, they didn’t allow their sound to suffer. They played a mix of covers and originals, with a decent blend of thrash and black metal. They were heavy, in-your-face and loud! Bharad Ravi surely deserves a special mention for his fantastic vocals.
2. The Old Rugged Cross
3. Sacrifice (Bathory cover)
4. Apostles of Baal
5. Tormentor (Kreator cover)
6. Goatspawn Militia
7. Black Magic (Slayer cover)
8. Into the Black
After some outright, riff-heavy material, things turned a little too technical with Orchid. They are possibly the new Eccentric Pendulum, and are definitely a band to watch out for. Midway, the drummer had some issues with his bass pedal, but that was just a minor hiccup in their set. Despite however complicated their compositions sounded (much to the dismay of many other traditional metalheads around), they were great. The vocalist can be quite distracting, especially when he’s clambering all over the monitors on stage, but I guess it’s what added to the liveliness of their set.
3. Gaian Hypothesis
5. The Observer
Djinn and Miskatonic debuted their new line-up… Um, rather… their new member Sriram at Sonic Doom. They sounded fuller than they did as a 3-piece, and that’s only a good thing for their type of music. In my opinion, it was their best gig so far.
1. Mortal Science
2. Seven Year Witch
3. Book of The Fallen
4. Weird Tales
It was also good to see Escher’s Knot back in action after Djinn. Many of us were watching them after quite a while, and it’s awesome that they still sound as crisp as they did some time ago. They too debuted some new material, and also stirred the moshpit up in quite a big way!
2. Anonymous Origins
3. Humiliative- Meshuggah cover
6. Grand Design
8. Mayan Calendar
Finally, it was time for headliners Shepherd to take the stage. Unfortunately, the crowd had thinned out by the time the band started, but too bad for those who missed out! Honestly, I was wondering if the pace of the evening would change after a high energy set by Escher’s Knot made way for the sludge kings, but I was wrong. The headbanging continued and probably also intensified when the band began. I’ve never watched a bad show by Shepherd, and every time they play, they only seem to get better. They were the perfect way to end the evening.
2. Spite pit
3. Wretch salad
5. Underdog god
9. Stale bait
In all, Sonic Doom was a great gig- I loved the variety, and every band on the bill was far above average! The turnout was more than 150 people- definitely higher than what I’ve seen at shows for quite a while now, and organizers- you possibly can learn from this! Next stop for Bangalore metalheads- Evilution! We’ll see you there!