Kryptos – Featured Band (Jan 09)

  • Interview by: Vilasini Muralidhar
  • Date: January 1, 2009

Kryptos is not a new name to any metalhead in India. Definitely one of the more popular bands in the country, they are now two albums old, with ‘The Ark of Gemini’ hitting international charts as well.

We, at Headbangers.in, caught up with this Bangalore quartet, and this is what they had to say:

HB: Nothing unusual about this one, but here’s all about how it started…

Kryptos: Kryptos was actually formed in 1998 by our ex bassist/vocalist Ganesh K. and Nolan Lewis. They shared the same love for a lot of classic rock/metal of the 70’s and 80’s and one thing led to another. Inevitably, Kryptos was born. To the despair of news hounds everywhere, there were no satanic rituals or animal sacrifices involved. Ha ha.

HB: And influences were?

Kryptos: Our influences are quite varied. They range from classic bands like Sabbath, Priest and Maiden to thrash bands like Kreator and Coroner to doom bands like Candlemass and also melodic death metal like Dark Tranquillity

HB: Tell us the secret behind the name…

Kryptos: The name is derived from the Latin word ‘cruptus’ which means ‘hidden’. Since we’ve always strived to create a sound that isn’t exactly ‘classifiable’, since we bring so many influences to the table, it seemed like an ideal name for the band.

HB: And how would you say the new line-up of the band is different from the old?

Kryptos: We wouldn’t say there is too much of a difference except for the fact that ever since we went through the line-up change, the band has been revitalized to an extent because of the infusion of newer members who are extremely enthusiastic about the band and who have taken Kryptos forward while still maintaining our identity.

HB: ‘The Ark of Gemini’- an international success. Firstly, congratulations. Secondly, tell us how it feels…

Kryptos:  Well we wouldn’t call it a bona fide success just yet, but so far so good. The album has received a lot of positive feedback from all over the world, as well as lots of radio airplay particularly in the U.S. We’ve been featured in magazines like Metal Hammer in the U.K and Germany as well which is pretty awesome. But what matters at the end of the day is people from unlikely places like Mexico, Chile, Iran, Korea, Russia and other places saying how much they liked the album. That’s when we feel really proud of the music we’ve made.

HB: Let’s do a comparative study of ‘Spiral Ascent’ and ‘The Ark Of Gemini’. Kidding. But tell us, how has Kryptos grown as a band, and musically?

Kryptos:  Well, the main difference is that musically ‘The Ark Of Gemini’ is superior to ‘Spiral Ascent’, at least in our opinion. The songs are more thought out and have a lot of depth to them which holds up well even after repeated listens. Also, we’ve become a lot more professional when it comes to recording and releasing an album. We still have a lot to learn, but we’re getting there. Our next album could be the one that really puts us on the map.

HB: Which has been your best and your worst gig till date?

Kryptos: We’ve had a number of great gigs over the years. We can’t really pick out the best one, but gigs like Rock Ethos and March Metal Mania in Bangalore really stand out because they really captured the essence of what Kryptos is all about.

We’ve had our share of terrible gigs in the past too, but probably one of the worst would be a gig we played in Mysore sometime in 98 or 99, which turned out to be next to a cow shed in front of 10 people and about 56 million mosquitoes. Ha ha.

HB: Any backstage secrets you might want to share with us?

Kryptos: Nothing fancy really. Usually we just share a smoke and have some tea to relax ourselves in true Bangalorean fashion!

HB: What are the three things which keeps Kryptos going?

Kryptos: We would say the passion we have for music is the most important thing that keeps us going. The day that passion dies, the band will cease to exist and luckily it doesn’t look like coming to an end any time soon.
Another thing that keeps us going is that we still have so much to say musically and creatively before we hang up our boots. Finally, the camaraderie that we have in the band is what has kept us going for so long.

Of course, copious amounts of beer doesn’t hurt either!

HB: What about a manager? How do you all handle finances, gigs, equipment and the cost of beer?

Kryptos: We don’t have a manager yet, but it’s something we’re considering for the near future. As of right now, we personally handle all the finances, gigs and ESPECIALLY the beer!

HB: Future albums/band plans?

Kryptos: We’ve already started writing material for our 3rd album and we’re looking at a tentative release date of May 2009. Also, we’re slowly building our international network, so a tour abroad is definitely on the cards for late 2009/2010.

HB: Now for the celebrity moment- A few words for fans and upcoming bands in the country…

Kryptos: We’d just like to thank all the fans for buying our albums and supporting us at gigs. It really means a lot to us. And to all the upcoming bands out there, just remember that if you want to make it musically in India, you need to have a LOT of patience and commitment for what you’re doing. It isn’t enough to be musically talented. You need to have a lot of drive and keep your feet on the ground no matter what happens or what anyone says. And most importantly always have a blast doing whatever you do because those moments might never come around again. Cheers!