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Anathema to Headline Decibels at IIT Madras’ Saarang 2013

Madras will see more metal this year, with British prog metallers Anathema headlining Decibels at IIT Madras’ Saarang Festival in 2013.

3 Dec, 2012

Abhimanyu Meer


British progressive metallers Anathema are set to make their first visit to India to headline IIT Madras’ Saarang festival’s live music event, Decibels, in 2013. IIT Madras has played host to some big international acts in the past including Opeth, Hammerfall, and Pain Of Salvation (all Swedish acts, by the way), and even Skid Row. This time around it seems IIT Madras’ fascination with Scandinavian metal has waned a little, in favour of metal from Britain (no, we’re not talking about Iron Maiden).

2012 has undoubtedly shaped up to be the year of metal in India (read this article in the Sunday Guardian about that subject), with performances by Children of Bodom, Kreator (interview), Slayer, Megadeth (at the Bacardi NH7 Weekender, Delhi NCR), and Korn having taken place already, and upcoming shows by Gojira in Bangalore, and Testament and Periphery at the Bacardi NH7 Weekender, Bangalore (buy tickets here).

Anathema started off as a doom metal outfit back in 1990, and over the course of their 22-year-long career, have seen changes in their musical style and their lineup. Their fourth album, Alternative 4, released in 1998, almost a decade into Anathema’s career, saw them move toward or more experimental sound, incorporating elements of alternative-rock and psychedelia. 1999′s critically-acclaimed release, Judgement, also followed Anathema’s new, alternative vein of metal. After the departure of founding member and guitarist Daniel Cavanagh in 2002, and his subsequent return in 2003, Anathema moved toward a progressive, atmospheric sound.

During the second half of the last decade, Anathema found themselves without a record label, and therefore, adopted a DIY strategy of releasing their music. Anathema began using the power of Mother Internet to release their songs via the now-common “Radiohead formula”, which is, having fans pay what they wish for music. The band have developed a cult-like following since, and still play shows all over Europe and the UK.

We spoke with Tejo Kiran, one of the organisers of Saarang 2012, about their decision to have Anathema headling their festival

So, when we asked people to put in names for who should headline Decibels on our Facebook page, we got a lot of posts on our page asking us to bring Anathema. The band was also interested, and in fact, we were trying to have them last year but it didn’t work out. This time it did though.They have a big fan-following at the college and in Chennai.

Anathema’s last two albums, We’re Here Because We’re Here (2010), and Weather Systems (2012), were released on the independent Kscope label, which has also released albums by Porcupine Tree, Steven Wilson, and Blackfield, among others. Check out this video of Anathema performing ‘Lost Control’ off 1998′s Alternative 4, below.

More details on Anathema’s show at Decibels will be released soon, so make sure you watch this space. NH7.in has teamed up with IIT Sarang to help select bands that will play at Decibels alongside Anathema. Check out details here. Check out what else is going on at Saarang at their official website

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