Nepal Underground SCENE :2011 A Brief Look Back

Vader in NepalWell it’s the end of a year and my new year’s resolution is that I won’t bore my boss with the same excuse for taking leaves and will think of some more excuses. Yeah!

So… 2011 had been full of delights and surprises for sure, in personal levels and when talking about the local underground music scene – a lively year with tons of events and shows been offered. While Bryan Adams and MLTR rocked the mainstream, the underground had its own celebration with Polish death metal juggernauts Vader performing in Silence Festival II, the biggest metal festival in the country yet. And soon after this success, Silence Entertainment, the festival organisers went on in bringing Freak Kitchen veteran Mattias Eklundh for a guitar workshop. How cool’s that? The year also saw the inception Tone Music Store.

8th kcm icmc final concertWe even got to witness Scribe from India in 8th KCM ICMC in November and things certainly look awesome as the gap between Nepalese and Indian scenes seem to be tying up gradually. Antim Grahan played in Hyderabad, India, in Deccan Rock ’11, sharing stage with mighty acts like Decapitated, Nervecell, Cyanide Serenity, etc. making it the first time a Nepali band has played in a notable event in Indian soil after another black metal monsters Cruentus played in Chennai, 2006. Also, Kalodin had toured the north-eastern part of India in Gangtok and Guwahati. Also, Indian bands as Grungy Morphins, Dark Murder Scheme and Alien Gods also played in Pokhara, in shows organised by Brutal Pokhara.

Brutal Pokhara has come into existence and they’re working hard to promote the scene in Pokhara… which is a cool thing… and they’d even released an e-magazine early this year (while the other one’s in process, as reported) and two compilations featuring dozens of bands from inside and outside the continent.

antim grahan ides of march 2011On the other hand, like in last year, the scene in the capital had been all eventful with at least couple of shows per month. KtmROCKS crossed ten years of its unremitting contribution in uplifting the local scene and “Ides of March VI” was organised to mark this occasion. KtmROCKS could also release the second edition of its online compilation “Be Loud Be Proud” and two e-magazines (in March and August). Apart from this, KtmROCKS also did the Dharan leg of Black Tour, which was headlined by the local black metal giant Antim Grahan.

Another dashing news has to be the covering up of Nepalese metal scene in Close-up (heavy metal) Magazine in Sweden. It was an in-detail article based on David Noaksson’s stay in Kathmandu while he attended couple of gigs in that interval. It’s great to notice that the local scene is finally getting the attention that it deserves from the foreign metal community.

Now the scene tends to be getting more diverse than ever, with bands experimenting newer stuff. 2011 saw the formation of bands like Lakhey, experimenting metal with various traditional Newari instruments making them the first Newari ethnic metal band in the world, 11, who are credited to have introduced slam death metal in the scene and Space Cake Break, the first ever Nepali rock band to incorporate a DJ, among others. So things certainly look bright on this side.

I’m gladly looking forward to the upcoming year, and there are a couple of things to be really thrilled about, like the Binaash debut album, Kalodin EP, Symbol of Orion EP, possibly Night and Antim Grahan full-lengths as well, the third edition of Silence Festival, and few more issues of KtmROCKS e-magazine. So while I try making up few more excuses to throw to my boss, I wanna wish you all a very joyous Happy New Year 2012!!! May it greet you with joy and prosperity in your and your family lives…

Some notable releases in 2011:

- Brutal Pokhara Compilation (“Occult Science of Metal” and “Noisedoom”)
Dead Mariners – “Ishwori”
Gothica – “Deification of the Sabotuer” (EP)
Jindabaad – “Plastic Heart” (EP)
KtmROCKS Compilation Be Loud Be Proud II
Sangharsha/Jugaa – “The Sickness That Never Sleeps” (Split)
Zero Transition – “Zero Transition”

[By Samyam Shrestha.Also Check his blog.]

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