Interview with Hayagriva

Over its 18 years of existence, Hayagriva has played what they call “dark shadow metal”. With the recent Emperor Awaits single release, it marks the return to the band’s original 1995 demo lineup once more. We talk to Mantheravathee to find out more.


HMT: Greetings Mantheravathee! Thank you for giving us this opportunity to interview you. Before we move on, would it be possible to give our readers a brief history and introduction to Hayagriva?

Hayagriva is band from Ipoh, Malaysia. Played Dark Shadow Metal since 1993.

Hayagriva reunited with the original demo lineup 1995: Aavimarga on vocals, Mantheravathee on guitars and bass, Venkhateswehra on keyboards, and Nhajasakthee on drums. March 13th 2011 saw the release of the single ‘Emperor Awaits’, while a full-length is planned for September 11, 2011. The band is also hunting for a label to publish, distribute and promote the album.

What does the band name mean, and what is the significance of the band name to the band’s style of music?

The name origins from Hi-Malaya’s myths (and the myths flows along the same mountain down descend to the south until Malaya), which some belief as Enemy of both gods of Hinduism and Buddhism, The Lord of Wrath. Maybe now you may found more others/shits meaning came from this name. You can goggle it on for further irrelevance similarities, which we don’t give a shits as this is now our own myths and meaning to the band.

Disregards the origins meaning and other myths, the only meaning that matter of the band and the motive of the band name are “The Lord of Never-Ending Wrath”. As we don’t care other sources anymore. If there is such name, in other versions, cults or myth, that’s maybe coincide and we don’t give a shits coz that doesn’t concerned us anymore. Fuck the rest…

The Lord of Never-Ending Wrath of the band is a ridicule character in wars against all the great deceptions of our time.

You are one of the co-founders of the band alongside Nhajasakthee, and the band recently reunited with the demo lineup. Would it be possible to share with us about the lineup shifts in the band?

The original member, as in the demo 1995 and the latest releases in 2011 is Aavimarga (vocals), Nhajsakthee (drum), Venkhateswehra (keyboard) and me on guitar (and bass on recording).

There is no changing on drum, guitar and keyboard from the beginning until now.

Aavimarga on vocals until 2000. After that Dyoraktha doing the bass/vocals. Aavimarga take over again in 2005 and schedule for the Red Heaven album. But he then disappeared shortly before his recording sessions. Later, changeover to Xamsakty. Again Aavimarga came in 2010 to reclaimed his throne as the front act of the band. We are very please on his returns. Because Aavimarga is the only one can handle the vocals of Hayagriva.

Bass member is on and off. And for now the band uses only tour musicians. The current one is Jonus Khaitabha. The previous bass member was Axmaniac (of Langsuyr), Solae Dradjun (of Necrotic Chaos) and Dyoraktha.

The band claims to play “dark shadow metal”. What exactly is “dark shadow metal”, and how did the name for the band’s genre come about?

Hayagriva music was claimed to be Dark Shadow Metal since first demo 1995. Where some people said we played melodic black metal. Black metal or whatever fuckin’ metal they said doesn’t matter to us anymore. As we like our music and perhaps listener appreciate what we do.

We choose Dark Shadow Metal because we like that. And our music and lyrics is shadows, not white or black!! Also to tell you that we are not another stereotype black metal or death boring metal band!!! So stop labeling Hayagriva is a Black Metal band!!! As there’s no black metal band in our country.

The band’s debut full length took a long 14 years after the formation of the band to release. What was it that caused the delay before the release of Red Heaven in 2007?

We too much enjoyed our life and live in shadows. Estacy in illlusions. Delusions and intoxicated of life. Hallucinated by dreams. Drowned in hopes. Lineup changes, personal life changes and current scene situations at that time contributes the delays.

Which is better then never. 2007 and till now Hayagriva offers new riffs of dark shadows. More complex than ever. The better songs after songs written as time goes by.

The band recently posted on Facebook that a video is being shot for the single, Emperor Awaits. How is the filming coming along, and what can fans of the band expect?

The shooting doing very well. Now the material is still in the studio. Editing and mixing in process. It was a wonderful experience doing this music video. Directed by Rizal Yusof.

You can expect this video out, day view in the upcoming September 2011. Maybe it will be a DVD version together with the Full length album 2011 out on September 11, 2011. Anyway its not finalize yet, we will advise you in the band facebook (www.facebook.com/myhayagriva) . Check it out!!!

You can expect something very different in this video music. Especially people in our country, this is something that’s all the metal band should have one. We Hayagriva can help other band to make their own video. As our experience, skills and availability is still around to make others too. Metal band in our country, contact us if you want to make one.

The band earlier in the year released the Emperor Awaits single, and it’s a preview of the upcoming full length album. Would it be possible to tell us and our readers more about the upcoming full length album?

The new album 2011 should be the best ever release of the band. It all brand new 11 tracks plus one hidden bonus track. More pace and intense in all department. The hints already reveal as in the Emperor Awaits songs. The rest is more alike and some different too. Songs properly composed, lots of riffs and solo than before. Keyboards rich of moods and strokes… The most important thing is the vocals. Its Aavimarga !!! Who else is better voices of Hayagriva unless him !!!

On the Emperor Awaits single as well, there was a DJ remix of Intoxicated. What was the reason behind including such a remix in the single? How was it received by fans of the band?

This is a bonus version, where the experimental works come. Its just another view of Emperor Awaits. And the feedback I heard is ‘Wow’! This is where funs come to the band and bonus to fans as we pressed it.

In addition, there is the inclusion of a SYJ/SOFEA cover as well. What was the reason behind covering this song in particular?

This is another bonus tracks, and another experimental and funs. The reason is we like the songs. In addition, this is a bonus and limited version just for Hayagriva fans. We hope our fans enjoy it as we do. A one shot recording plain voices from me and Venkhateswehra is simply originally intentions is for our own personal collection. In second though, why don’t we share it to our listeners? As we like it, maybe our fans like it too. Theres another version, which put the scream old growled of Aavimarga. You will get it with the new album this September.

Why SYJ / SOFEA ? I don’t know. Maybe we live in the same town.

I have to admit that one thing that caught my attention about the Emperor Awaits single is the album artwork. How did the album artwork come about, and what is the inspiration behind it?

The artwork engineered by Mr Axmaniac of Kompgraphner. Produced and directed by Hayagriva. New age, the modern world in deception. And Shadows !!!! The concept is Shadows.

The band is from Ipoh, Malaysia. What is the metal scene like over there, and what are some of the bands that we should check out?

Ipoh’s Metal Militant Supremacist compilation CD will out very soon!!! Its 20 bands from IPOH. Good and talented bands.. old and new !!! You should check all this 20 bands!!!

The Malaysian authorities are known to be very strict on black metal bands. Has the band ever run into problems with the authorities before?

There are no black metal bands in Malaysia. Therefore, yet no band the authorities had encountered for. Perhaps it is just because the authorities will never found any Black Metal band from this country.

Stop reading newspaper and watching prime news on local tv, then only you will know there’s no such issues.

What does the future hold for the band?

Its shadows, no one can foreseen tomorrow. Hayagriva will livin the shadows or bury within it… We don’t care what will be tomorrow. However, today we were working hard, to finish the entire tasks. Then to get the album done. Before we can write the album, which must be release as the 20th anniversary of Hayagriva out schedule between 2013 to 2015. And few gigs along the ways!!! Yet no plan after that. Fuck all the shities plan.

One final question for the band: any parting words before we end the interview?

Hayagriva will officially launch the upcoming album in a gig/party at Ipoh. On Saturday Night, September 10th 2011.

We will announce more details regarding this event on our facebook.com/myhayagriva

Be there, get the album CD first!!! Just a few hours before the official release date of the album on September 11th 2011.

Get it from the very hand of the bands who personally make sales on that day!! Smiles, pictures together and some autographs will be lots of funs!!! We also planned for specials discounts and free gift and perhaps will arrange FREE ENTRANCE too !!! Just be there and enjoy Hayagriva. There two guest bands extras that night too, just for you the audience.

Contact Hayagriva:
www.facebook.com/myhayagriva
shadow_hayagriva@yahoo.com

Band booking:
Malaysia number: 013 4384383 / 0176625731

Hayagriva on the internet:
Official website
MySpace
Facebook

©2011 Heavy Metal Tribune | Clarence

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