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One Year of Rocking ‘n’ Rolling

It was with much excitement that I walked on to the stage above the bar at the Hard Rock Café in Mumbai. After all it was the first anniversary of Rolling Stone in India. It took me back to the September of 2007 when the editor Radhakrishnan Nair, a contributing colleague Sudeep Chakravarti and myself […]

Luke Kenny May 20, 2009

It was with much excitement that I walked on to the stage above the bar at the Hard Rock Café in Mumbai. After all it was the first anniversary of Rolling Stone in India. It took me back to the September of 2007 when the editor Radhakrishnan Nair, a contributing colleague Sudeep Chakravarti and myself had gone to New York to meet with the legendary Jann Wenner, the founder of Rolling Stone. And little did we know that one year of madness later, we’d be celebrating a whole year of rock & roll that has seen so much change.

So, to herald in a new year of independent music, Delhi-based fusion rock band Advaita, Mmbai’s very own electro-rock outfit Medusa and the super cool Pentagram were lined up to play what was to become a rampaging night to remember. And along with me doing hosting duties was Mumbai’s favourite radio jockey Malini.

Advaita took the stage and played a 50 minute set that started out sombre and eclectic. I could sense some of the audience getting restless, as the spirits were running high and the music was a bit low. But such was the construction and flow of Advaita’s set that by the time they finished their set, they left the crowd wanting more. Although I felt that a Hard Rock was not the ideal venue for a band like Advaita to play, it was great that they played there. Times they are-a changing.

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After a short break in which I and Malini gave out some sponsor goodies of free beer and swanky shirts, it was time for Medusa to take the stage. Now I had seen them perform a few nights ago at a smaller venue and they had blown me away, but maybe it was the largeness of the HRC that tended to hollow out their sound. And to add to it a technical snag hit them when their laptop died for want of a battery charge. But it was soon up and running again and they ended their set on a high note.

Pentagram were the much awaited act of the night and they did not disappoint. (Do they ever?) Vishal’s energy has always been unparalleled, and he does not miss a note. Randolph was at his edgy best, Papal the bassist was having a blast as always and Shiraz was in full power. Crowd favourites like ”˜Voice,’ ”˜Electric,’ ”˜Animal,’ ”˜Rock ”˜N’ Roll’ and ”˜Price of Bullets’ were on their setlist. The evening ended on a high with audience members going home with free cases of beer, vouchers for some shirts, gift hampers from the radio channel and heads full of some slamming rock & roll. Rock on, Rolling Stone!

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