Pentagram on ‘Reunion Gig’: ‘We Never Really Broke Up’
The electro-rockers will be playing a headlining set at the upcoming Bacardi NH7 Weekender
Whether you’re a corporate slave or a touring musician, there comes a point in your life where you need to take a break before completely losing your mind. That’s exactly what happened with Mumbai electro-rockers Pentagram three years ago. The two-decade-old band was scheduled to play an unplugged set at Bacardi NH7 Weekender Pune in 2014 but barely a few weeks away from the gig, they pulled out of it and announced an indefinite hiatus on Twitter. Vocalist Vishal Dadlani says, “We’d been on the road constantly. 2011 is when Bloodywood came out and I think in those four years we must have easily played not less than a 150 shows with just that material.” He adds, “So it gets a little mechanical.”
Dadlani tells us that the real reason was simple: “We didn’t like each other too much at the time. We were about to put out a movie to commemorate 20 years of Pentagram and all of it was getting too much.” However, Bacardi NH7 Weekender announced today that Dadlani, guitarist Randolph Correia, bassist Papal Mane and drummer Shiraz Bhattacharya will hit the stage at the festival on December 10th in Pune. “It’s not really a reunion, we never really broke up. Let’s just say we stopped being lazy for a bit,” explains the musician.
Dadlani also admits that the tragic deaths of musicians like Chris Cornell, Chester Bennington–and keyboardist Karan Joseph closer home””earlier this year served as a wake-up call for Pentagram to get back on stage. “[It was] just the realization that life’s too short to waste on anything. For whatever its worth, [if] you have things to say, you should say them; [if] you have things to do you should do them,” the vocalist explains.
Outside of Pentagram, the members have all been busy doing their own thing. Dadlani says, “My life is in the public domain, Shiraz has been making just ridiculous amounts of ads and films and short films, and Randolph has been producing for other artists–he’s been touring as Func, playing extensively.” He adds that although the band stopped playing shows, they never really drifted away as band mates. “We never stopped talking, hanging, meeting. The WhatsApp group was active.”
On how the group decided that their hiatus should be called off, the frontman says, “We got together to hang a few days ago, literally six days ago and we were like, ”˜Should we play?’ So we called Vijay [Nair, OML] and said, ”˜We’re playing!’ (laughs).”
Fans of the band can expect nothing but a full-throttle performance this Sunday in Pune. “We are a band that is basically coming back after three years. So we want to do it right, the process needs to be correct. We will try and make it awesome.”
Dadlani and co. also have new material that they might perform at Bacardi NH7 Weekender in Pune if it is ready in time. The vocalist wasn’t able to comment on the new tracks but assured us that the group will make their performance special. Pentagram have already got gigs lined up this season and are even planning on releasing a single either in January or February which will be their first new release since 2011’s Bloodywood. “We have six options to choose from at this point. Hopefully we can make the choice before the 10th so we can play it out,” says Dadlani.
Given the fan frenzy on social media in the past couple of days, the vocalist also has a few words of gratitude for Pentagram lovers: “Thank you for everything and thank you for giving us your patience over the last three years. Thank you for still caring whether Pentagram is around or not. Show up and blow up, we’re going to make it special.”