Undying Inc To Release New EP, Plan A New Album For 2014
The Delhi technical metal band on overcoming lineup instability and why American groove metallers Pantera are major influences
Some fans termed the departure and reunion of voÂcalist Shashank Bhatnagar with Delhi metallers UndyÂing Inc as unnecessary drama. Bassist Reuben BhattachaÂrya invokes the wisdom of his idol, actor Jackie Chan, as a response to haters, “Life will knock us down, but it’s up to us to choose whether to get back up or not,” he quotes Chan, adding, “Our real fans have always stuck by us and that’s all that matÂters.” Bhatnagar chips in, “We will conÂtinue doing what we do best, which is cracking skulls and melting faces with our music.”
That’s Undying Inc for you, the toughÂest metal band around with heavy grooves and blast beats and off beat time signatures courtesy drummer Nishant Hagjer, who joined last year. After welÂcoming Bhatnagar back into the fold in August, the band went into the stuÂdio with Delhi producer and prog metal band Skyharbor’s guitarist Keshav Dhar to record their new four-track EP out this month, Ironclad. After releasing the title track “Ironclad” in September, the band have been on a gig spree, playing in Delhi, Chennai and Bengaluru. They recentÂly also booked a show in Guwahati. This month, the band plays in Kharagpur, Kolkata and Guwahati. Says Bhattacharya, “Chennai was way more intense than we expected. The crowd was nuts and they went apeshit.” BhattachaÂrya cheerfully notes that this was the first time that he saw moshpits and crowdÂsurfing at a banquet hall, which was the venue for their show.
Ironclad includes the band’s brutal mix of grooves and prog metal inf luencÂes that recall their second album, AgÂgressive World Dynasty released in 2010. In addition to Ironclad’s title track, the EP includes show staples, “Pit MechanÂics” and “Termination Shock.” Undying Inc also pays tribute to groove metal band Pantera with a cover track, the title of which they’re keeping secret. Says Gupta about the Pantera influence, “It is a little surprise for the fans; it’s our litÂtle tribute to the band that made us want to play heavy music in the first place.” Bhattacharya adds Pantera is more of a philosophical influence to Undying Inc’s music, “Pantera had that groove with that attitude to not give a fuck about the rules when making music. There’s definitely that element of groove, it [our music] is not mindless technical music.”
But being re-energized ever since BhatÂnagar rejoined, the band already has plans to release a new album next year. Says Bhattacharya, “There are also other songs, such as ”˜Snake of Inertia’ and ”˜DeÂstroyer Overlord’ which, along with four or five more songs, will be in the next full length album out in 2014.”
As much as they are looking forward, Undying Inc will also redistribute and upload their last album, Aggressive World Dynasty (AWD). To mark the third anniÂversary of Aggressive World Dynasty, the entire album will be up for free download. He adds, “A lot of people have heard more about Aggressive World DyÂnasty than the album itself actually. So, that chapter’s not closed yet.” The bassÂist goes back to the Pantera inf luence, hoping that Undying Inc’s music will be as timeless as their heroes, “We want fans who are listening to our songs now to still get a kick out of it six to 10 years down the line.”
The coming months have much more writing in store for the band, getting re-acquainted with Bhatnagar and keeping up the speed of their 19-year-old drumÂmer Nishant Hagjer. The drummer, who also plays for Guwahati melodic metal band Rectified Spirit, says he’s been makÂing their crazy music even crazier. Says Hagjer, “I think the process [of songwritÂing] has to be organic. We make sure we build the songs together in a manner that it becomes second nature for us and we can play it from muscle memory.”
So is it back to the (mostly) good old days for the band? Says Bhatnagar about the first time the band reunited for a jam, “Fuck yeah, it didn’t even feel like we were jamming after a break. We just plugged in and tore it up. It’s just doing what we do best.”
Undying Inc Red Bull Tour Bus
January 20th – IIT Kharagpur
January 23rd – St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata
January 31st – IIT Guwahati (Alcheringa festival)
Watch the video for “Ironclad” here.
This article appeared in the December 2013 issue of ROLLING STONE India.