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Exclusive Premiere: If Hope Dies Bring Polished Riffs on ‘Secrecy’

The Darjeeling-based metallers first release since 2016’s ‘Sukna’ EP features a modern prog sound

Anurag Tagat Apr 29, 2018

Sukna, Darjeeling-based metallers If Hope Dies. Photo: Anuraj Rai

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Earlier this month, Siliguri hosted a metal gig for the first time in a long time, with producer and vocalist of Sukna-based act If Hope Dies, Aakash Sherpa, doing all the major legwork. Sherpa spent about two hours waiting on the owner of a local pub and subsequent time convincing him to host a metal show. “I told him he’ll get to see some madness.”

As promised, Sherpa tells us there were 300 people at the show, even though they printed only 200 tickets. “We were kind of overwhelmed. It feels like we’re getting old now, because we’ve been in the scene for seven years now. But we’re here to say and make our own scene,” says Sherpa.

The do-it-yourself approach has long been Sherpa’s motto, from when he picked up production techniques and set up his own studio to record If Hope Dies’ debut EP Sukna (2016) to shows like these. On their latest single “Secrecy,” he helmed recording and mixing duties, sending it over to American guitarist and recording engineer Adam Bentley for mastering.

Written by drummer Rupsang Lama, “Secrecy” deals with the complexities and uncertainties of life, something that the band reflects in their djent-leaning elements, opting for refined, cleaner riffs compared to the aggressive energy on Sukna EP. Sherpa, however, adds, “It’s more of an experiment, we’re not so sure about if it would make it to the future album, so it’s not to say we’ve changed our sound.”

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It was nearly a finished song two years ago, but the band waited until they could work on a video, which was shot by filmmaker Anuraj Rai, with additional production from Bickey Pradhan. No surprise to hear Sherpa say they did most of it all themselves for the video as well. He says, “We had an empty room and we shot for eight hours straight. We cleaned the room, built the set ourselves – it’s all DIY.”

Watch the video for “Secrecy”

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