National Law School of India University’s ode to music, Strawberry Fields, is back for the fifteenth time. It touts itself as the largest competition for college and semi-professional bands, and has built up a vintage few can argue with.
This year, it’ll be live at the NLS campus in Nagarbhavi, Bangalore, between 25th and 27th of November. The entry is free, so you can walk right in, where you have a headlining act by Rudra to look forward to. They are a Vedic Metal quartet, which sounds like a mix-up, I know, but it isn’t. These Singaporeans, after getting together in 1992, have pioneered the fusion of classical ragas and Indian folk melodies into the normal pentatonic scale associated with metal. That’d be quite a treat, so head on over to catch them live.
The first song of theirs that gathered mainstream call
Kathir, the lead vocalist of the band is in fact a professor of Vedic literature. The band has released 6 albums to date. They’ve played in the US, Canada and most parts of Asia and whats more, Rudra has a European tour underway next year!
The others on the roster are Bevar Sea and The Captains Of Hook. Bevar Sea have been out and about for a while, playing their own version of stoner rock, while The Captains Of Hook recently formed with ex-members of Junkyard Groove deciding to get together.
They’re both unique, besides this also being a chance for The Captains Of Hook to premier a lot of original compositions that they’ve purportedly been working on.
Other than that, show organizers promise at least fifty independent band performances; the final selection will soon be decided upon and the list up for all to see on the festival’s dedicated Facebook page and website, which will also offer other information – band details, music – about the competing bands too.
What’s up for grabs besides the music?
There are several initiatives afoot with regards to saleable branding opportunities at the event, with Strawberry Fields promising to be a well-covered event. There are numerous tie-ups too, which gives winners chances to pick up recording contracts with Logic and Madness Creative Labs, besides getting a chance to play at the finals of Channel V Launchpad. Unseen Underground have also promised the winning band a slot on their multi-city tour.
The themes will be expanded still, with panel discussions to be organized on Saturday, the 26th. The first discussion will be on copyright, ownership and licensing regimes, while the second would be on a professional musician’s growing pains – from home recording hassles to landing that first record deal.
That would make it for a pretty well-rounded festival, if we were looking for one. Anyway, it’s the best chance you can have of dropping by and checking out the future torchbearers of music in the country.
STAY WITH SCORE as we pick the cherries that are worth sampling at Strawberry Fields! Seriously, less puns & more punch.