Premiere: Albatross Twist Metaphors on ‘Where Do Sheep Disappear?’
The new single is the first to feature guitarist Purujit Srivastava, releasing as a stand-alone story
If there’s one thing Mumbai heavy metal band Albatross have managed, it’s to take the simplest of stories and give them a scary, horrific spin. In the case of their newest single, “Where Do Sheep Disappear?” lyricist and bassist Dr. Hex aka Riju Dasgupta takes the idea of not just counting sheep, but following their trail.
And understandably, there is a deeper layer of meaning to it. Dasgupta says, “In a larger context, this is my angry song. It’s about how the scene that I’ve spent almost half my life in is slowly dying, and how there are so few avenues, when we were shown Utopian dreams of how it will grow. Especially for a metal band, the opportunities here are much fewer than only a few years ago.” In the dejected ballad-esque pattern that also features polished riffs from guitarist Vigneshkumar Venkatraman, vocalist Biprorshee Das conjures the ironic refrain “We’re all sheep/Created in a hole/We’re all sheep/We do as we’re told.”
Recorded with the entire band in one take at Benchmark Studios in Thane – by co-founder and resident engineers Ariel Samson and Sandesh Rao – “Where Do Sheep Disappear?” won’t be a part of any larger story arc in the Albatross universe. Unlike concept and story-based releases such as Dinner Is You (2010) and Fear From the Skies (2015), it’s a stand-alone song that was written even before guitarist Purujit Srivastava replaced Nishith Hegde last year. Dasgupta says, “This is release 3.5 and has nothing to do with release number four, which will happen some day in the future.”
Although Srivastava contributes a solo, “Where Do Sheep Disappear?” is also one of the few to feature none of Das’s shrieks, almost making it one of their (comparatively) mellower but more emotionally weighted songs. Going by the lyrical matter, Dasgupta says it does reflect his and the band’s standpoint on harsh realities of lower CD sales and dwindling audiences in Indian metal. He adds, however, “I think our forthcoming EP, if it ever comes out, is my best story yet. It remains to be seen if it will ever see the light of day.”
Watch the lyric video below. ‘Where Do Sheep Disappear?’ T-shirts available here.