Guillotine (October 2010)
This October, Headbangers India puts the spotlight on Guillotine, progressive metal band from New Delhi. In this exclusive (and quite light-hearted) interview, the band talks to us about their upcoming album ‘The Cynic’, their launch plans, their musical evolution and more…
HB: Greetings from Headbangers India! How’ve you guys been? It’s been quite a while since we heard from you. What have you guys been up to?
Karan: Hey, Firstly thanks for featuring us for the month of October. We’ve been good , just been busy planning the launch of “‘The Cynic’”
Takar: It’s taken way longer than we ever expected, with printing delays, artwork problems, getting our broke asses to collect some money. Hopefully this launch is going to get us something in return.
Kabir: I’m jobless! Get me a job
Karan: You’re an idiot!
HB: Tell us a little about the new album. Why is it called ‘‘The Cynic’’?
Karan: ‘‘The Cynic’’ has been something we’ve been working on for about a year now. The album basically revolves around this person , who realizes the hollowness of religious faith , and how its more a method of social control rather than connecting with your soul. He takes it upon himself to fight these figures and unravel the biggest sham in human history, only to realize it is bound so deep in every vein of society that there can be no monumental change brought to it.
Takar: I’m off to sleep
Karan: You can ignore the theme homos, But the concept is pretty deep rooted throughout the album , and its interesting if you follow it up with the lyrics. We’ve really experimented and tried a lot of different things with the music, so you have a mix of funk , blues, jazz all over the metal madness!
HB: Musically, how would you say this album is different from what Guillotine has done earlier?
Kabir: Being our first Launch, its different from our earlier stuff because we had no earlier stuff
Akshat : I wasn’t even born when these guys were around
Takar: It’s a start, we each have very different influences and hopefully this album will be the start that we’ve been looking for all this while! Like we said , we’ve really pushed the boundaries in terms of the musical direction weve taken on this one, Any prog metal fan wont go unsatisfied after listening to “‘The Cynic’” , 50 minutes of juicy progressive metal!\m/
HB: What plans with the new album? Any tours/ big shows planned?
Rohit: We’re very good at making plans but even better at fucking them up.
Karan: We are in the process of working out a tour. I think the first album launch gig will be happening in Mumbai and were looking forward to play in other cities like Bangalore, Pune and Delhi, of course! The album should be available in most retail stores and online!
Akshat: It’s the first time were playing in Mumbai , and its exciting!
Takar: I love you Pau Bhaji!
Kabir: I love you PMS ( OOPS MNS)
HB: Music videos are the new trend… any of those coming up?
Kabir: No sir , we’ve been thinking about it , lets see if the album picks up and starts doing well , well should come out with one.
Rohit : I want one of those playboy mansions type videos , with girls and candy and Snoop dogg
Karan: It’s more about money and time as of now , I think every band wants their own music video, it’s what we’ve always dreamt of , and hopefully should work out !
HB: Let’s go back to the beginning… how did you guys come together? How was Guillotine formed?
Takar : Kabir and I were a part of our school band for quite a while , we wanted to take things to a professional front , and making our own music and get it out.
Kabir: It’s funny but we actually got Karan of a classified on RSJ , posing as a cheap whore….. when he turned up with a fake accent , we were really like “ok hes not going to be a part of this for sure”, but he had managed to ‘convince’ us otherwise(inside joke).
Karan : With lineup changes , blah blah blah we finally settled for Rohit , Manav and Akshat , and it’s been working out great since then, I think you can kind of sense the chemistry in the album.
Akshat : It’s been about a year since I’ve played with these guys and its been great , there are a very few progressive bands in the Delhi scene, I’m glad I’m a part of one of them!
HB: From 1 Fret Higher to Guillotine… tell us a little about the whole evolution. As a band, as individual musicians and also from the point of view of the scene and how that has influenced your band.
Takar : Of course the name changed (Thank god ) , it’s a funny story but the guy who renamed us as Guillotine, was our ex Guitarist and that was probably the first and the last good thing he ever did with the band!
Kabir: Hahaha , Its true !
Takar : But honestly , Musically we’ve become much more progressive (Kudos to Manav for bringing in a new element to the band )
Akshat : We’ve become much more experimental in terms of music, and you can see that side in ‘The Cynic’ , its different , its fresh , Its Guillotine!
Karan : We’ve been around the scene for about two years. The Indian scene is not the easiest to get a foothold in, there are some amazing bands and we’ve had our share of ups and downs, But I think we’ve shown we are serious about our music and we’ve got positive responses from all our 4 fans ? or was it 5 ?, But yeah ‘The Cynic’ has built up some good reviews and is being anticipated by a lot of people, it’s always a good feeling when you get that response from people, fans alike!
HB: Tell us about the equipment Guillotine uses.
Kabir : Yamaha Rydeen , AAX SABIAN Cymbals, Meinl Byzance cymbals( 2) , Rude paiste china, Wuhan china , zildjian splash, Meinl splash, Pearl demondrive double bass pedal, Paiste hihat.
Akshat : Roland Fantom G6.
Takar : I’m a cheap motherfucker. I just use a Gt-6/Pod Xt live, that too borrowed. I own a PRS SE custom 24, Washburn Dimebag Darell series.
Karan: I hate this question and Yes Takar I’ll buy a mic ! Soon.
Rohit : Warwick bass guitar.
HB: How does the band go about the entire songwriting process?
Karan: It’s mostly been that Takar/Rohit would come up with a riff, and we would work on it further together, with everyone contributing to it in some way or the other.
Kabir : Takar rocks ! We all sit down together and write our songs and all our individual influences are pretty evident in all the songs.
Takar: A basic riff is chalked out , and I mean we start jamming to it and sometimes there are songs we stick with sometimes there are songs we discard , but thats the whole fun of the musical journey, everyones got a say, everyones has an impact on the songs we write, its good fun!
Rohit : I’m always zoned out, whenever this happens !
HB: And now to go into something a little light hearted and know the guys behind the band a little better…
a. What does each of you do apart from being in the band…
Karan: Work as a producer for this Delhi Radio station.
Takar : I’m still in college.
Rohit: I’m still in college. Though I look like Jesus !
Kabir : Looking for a job, as I just finished college.
Takar: Get a job fool ! Earn some good money and buy me some equipment !
Akshat: I’m still in school.
Manav : Me Too!
b. How often do you jam? What is your practice schedule like?
Karan: About twice or thrice a week, mostly in the evening hours. We practice enough to do all our songs at least once.
Kabir : They just come to eat !
Akshat : We spend quality time eating !
Rohit : Food being kept aside, we’ve got our own jam pad in Kabir’s house, so it’s good having your own space, you can spend time on your songs, and try different stuff whatever sticks that what you get on ‘The Cynic’!
c. Every band has one member who takes up the bigger responsibilities of managing gigs, making sure everyone is on time for jams etc. Who is that unofficial band leader in Guillotine?
Takar : No one takes me seriously !
Karan: There’s no band leader as such , we’ve all played our roles promoting the band to each ones personal capacity, we dont have a manager , and I think were better of without one. Its been working out great till now and i dont think a manager would reall change anything!
d. Who’s the joker in the band?
Rohit : I thought I was the only one !
e. What are your influences, apart from music?
Guillotine : Food !
f. What’s coming up for the band in the next few months?
Guillotine : Well, we’ve been looking forward to launch our album in the bost possible way. Presently our POA is that we’ll play as many shows as we can, but we aren’t getting many or any at all! Haha.
HB: Thanks for the interview! This is your space and your celebrity moment, so go ahead and say something for everyone!
Guillotine : Do buy our album, or at least spread the word ! You’re the ones who can make the scene bigger and better. So, we need your money (It’s not going to be too much!), but yeah …there are alot of people to thank for the album , Mr Deepak Rao , Anupam , Keshav , Vidhur . We’ve been lucky to get help from a lot of people who truly believe in us, and its always great to have something like that ! Thank you. Do check us out on www.myspace.com/guillotine0.