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Campus Rock Idols 2008

By Natty Nawab On February - 9 - 2009 ADD COMMENTS

The not so melodramatic and too Awesome-Melodrama

The not so melodramatic and too Awesome-Melodrama Credit: Natty Nawab

The Rock scene in Hyderabad has had nothing to show in the last few months, with almost no gigs for the last few months. The general rock fan in the city of Hyderabad has been deprived of any live music and has been made to live on his music collection and the speakers in his room and it is at time like this that the Campus Rock Idols National Final came to the rescue. Campus Rock Idols as the name suggests is a rock competition for Rock Bands from Campuses across India, and this year was its 5th edition.

For the first time since its inception,the national finals were conducted in the city of Nawabs. The headlining band for the event was Euphoria and the Judges for the final round being Loy, Ehsaan (from the Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy trio) and the one and only Luke Kenny. The importance of Campus Rck Idols can be understood by the fact that the band who won this event is going to be one of the bands performing in Bangalore on 15th Feb before none other than Iron Maiden along with a cash prize of 75K, 50K and 25K for the winners, runner up and second runners up respectively.

The venue of the event this time was Treasure Island, a resort in Gandipet near the CBIT College, a departure from Durgam Cheruvu,the usual place reserved for the Campus Rock Idols Regional Finals, where the competition was conducted last year and the year before that.

Coming to the details of the event, The event had participants from 4 zones of India namely the South, North, East and West with two teams, the winner and runner-up representing each zone. The 8 bands which performed in the event in the order of their appearing on the stage were

1. Digital Suicide (East Zone)

2. Seize Her (North Zone)

3. Rosemary (West Zone)

4. Crimson Wood (South Zone)

5. Skrat (South Zone)

6. Melodrama (East Zone)

7. Abraxas (West Zone)

8. Jester (North Zone)

Abraxas - The Winners

Abraxas - The Winners! Credit: Natty Nawab

Although its very difficult to say anything about the genre of music that a band plays after just one listening but going by the sole performances we were treated to on the night, Alt/Punk Rock can be said as the most prominent genre of the night with as many as 5 bands which can be fitted into the genre. Two bands Melodrama can termed as Death/Thrash band while Abraxas is more of metal/thrash band. While Rosemary which proclaims itself as Grunge, played more of Psychedelic type solos though they also played their own version of Come Together by Beatles which could come in the grunge category.

The 3 winners of the events were

Winners -  Abraxas

Runner Up – Melodrama

2nd Runner Up – Jester

The event was an enthralling one with almost all the bands receiving appreciation and kudos from the almost 1000 strong crowd present at the venue, with special adulation coming for Melodrama and Abraxas, who went on to become the winners and the first runner up of the event. Apart from their music which was quite good another reason for the adulation was that the bands played the Thrash/Metal/Hard genre which is the favourite amongst the Hyderabad crowd who have grown up on the music of Bands like Sledge! Abraxas even had the honour of having a wall of death when they were performing which is quite an honour considering that this was the first time they were performing in the city.

The numbers, the support all was quite good, expect that some sections of the crowd were what you may call “The Desi Junta”, it seemed that a some sections of crowd werent Rock Lovers or even Rock Listeners at all and might have come just to see the performance of Euphoria because there was no entry fee for the event. Those sections of crowd werent much interested in enjoying the music and head banging instead you could see them breaking into a jig or a Bhangra every now and then. Another thing which the Rock loving junta didnt find appeasing was the way some of these people geared up against the people who were moshing and 10-15 people at a time targetted such people and even people of the size of Sairam (an extra large devoted rock lover who everybody is wary of in rock gigs) was made to disappear into the sidelines.

There was also a problem of drinking, with few guys who were completely wasted after having some drinks (or may be grass whose smell was quite prevalant at the place) werent quite able to control themselves and kept falling down here and there. A girl who was also completely wasted did create quite a ruckus at the place, who was lifted in air by some people present there each of whom wanted a piece of her, trying to squeeze her wherever they could. Later on, she was also reported trying to remove her clothes thats when some people (may be her friends) intervened and took her away.

 Euphoric EUPHORIA - The Headlining Act

Euphoric EUPHORIA - The Headlining Act Credit: Natty Nawab

A report of the evening can’t be complete without the mention of the headlining band of the evening, Euphoria, who as expected were quite brilliant on stage. Palash Sen was energy personified jumping around for almost the whole length of their (almost) 1:30 hr long performance. Palash Sen was also quite candid passing comments at times about the absence of girls in the crowd making it a cheerful evening. The band besides performing their own numbers also played hits like Comfortably Numb (Pink Floyd), With or Without You (U2), We Will Rock you (Queen) and Summer of 69 (Bryan Adams) which was sung in Bhangra Style. They also sang numbers of other Indian Artists including Dil Se, Mast  Kalandar and others.

The gig can easily be said to be one of the best in recent times in Hyderabad with a huge crowd, awesome music coupled with wonderful sound and lighting arrangement ( which were easily the best of any rock gig held in the city in the last 2-3 years). This is where the big names like Nokia, Hero Honda, Force 1 and others made the difference.

But the rather unruly crowd which clearly didnt have many rock enthusiasts clearly answered the question which every Hyderabadi has in mind about major bands not coming to Hyderabad while coming to perform in other major cities. Hyderabad rock circle is just not mature and enthusiastic enough for proper rock concerts, and a lot needs to be done to make Hyd ready for large concerts which are just not gigs.

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