Archive for June 1st, 2011


On The Horror Trail With Albatross

From beneath the layer of extreme metal bands, an avant-garde horror metal outfit that wails out spooky stories has sprung up and is fast gaining recognition in the Indian underground music scene

When Riju Dasgupta got up and left the blues/rock n’ roll band Old Monks, he knew exactly where he was going. With the genre of literature that made up most of his reading, it was but natural that he would move towards a force far less tame than a musical group named after a brand of rum. As a tribute to his hero King Diamond, Dasgupta would put together an avante-garde heavy metal outfit that sang horror stories exclusively. Since fate had chalked out the destination and the love of horror had handed him a map, Dasgupta dragged along that screaming banshee Biprorshee Das for the joyless journey.

Once the two had finalized the band’s name, Dasgupta began penning his terrifying tales of doom, the first being Gigi – the story of a doll who unwittingly sold her soul to the devil to fulfill her desire for living a life as a real person – an idea which came to Riju Dasgupta while he wasn’t particularly thinking on a bus ride to somewhere. Beginning on such a positively spooky note obviously got the fellow all charged up, for the sickness started flowing out of the man’s brain like goat blood on Bakri Eid, the result of which was Dinner Is You – a concept album about a tribe of cannibals who develop an incurable laughing disease thanks to their dietary habits, an idea taken from Michael Slade’s novel Cutthroat.

LARS KA SUFFER-JAN: No apple can keep the doctor away from loudmouth Lars!

The cover artwork of Dinner Is You may provide a good idea of just how twisted this band’s sense of humour is; a dining table set for a feast – with Lars Ulrich’s head on a plate and an apple in his mouth. Apparently, he was having great difficulty keeping his mouth shut, so the band decided to keep it open forever. With horrifying tales and eerie wails drilled with screaming guitar solos and splendid lyrics, the Bengali trio of Riju Dasgupta, Rajarshi Bhattacharyya and Biprorshee Das had hung the Albatross around this cursed world’s neck.

By the time Dinner Is You was digested by fans of horror music all over the world, Albatross had brought in Jay Thacker on drums and Vignesh Venkatraman on guitar. Riju Dasgupta wears a surgeon’s bloodied coat and a surgical mask to transform into a pathological terror to keep people from running away from Biprorshee’s deafening screams, and has also roped in Nishith Hegde, who’s all of 16 and the new hotshot guitarist in Mumbai.

All efforts to dig out information on Albatross‘ forthcoming album have proved to be futile because the horror metal band is remaining tightlipped on the new material, and that it will be far more horrifying than tales of cannibal tribes is all the good doctor is willing to reveal. Till then… it’s us, them and an entire tribe that can’t control its laughter because it eats human flesh. Of course, it’s an acquired taste.

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June 2011
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