Natana is said to be a cultural club launched by Technopark, which they expect to serve as a platform to create an enabling environment for the IT professionals in there to nurture their artistic talents and creative aspirations. Okay, I don’t have to say that in third person. I too belong to Technopark. But what attracted me to this launch event is nothing else, but the very first Avial live concert in technopark that was scheduled to happen at the closing of the event. There was star presence like Prithviraj and some impressive performances by natana selected Techies. I wish to describe it as a recollection of what happened there from sound check to the final song! If you felt I cut some of the important portions of the event, I’m sorry, that is intentional. The focus is on the Malayalee Rock band Avial.
It is not a weekend. Thursday doesn’t seem a good day for a late rock night. But being in a place where rock concerts are rare like the neelakurinji blossom, and if the band performing happens to be the one that I admire the most, a weekday isn’t a restriction. I had detailed plans. Came to office wearing a motherjane t-shirt inside my formals. After the scheduled work up to 6 PM, there where two options,
- Get the remaining spare parts of my bike which met with an accident two months ago replaced from the service center.
- Go to the guitar class.
Not much interested in other programs of natana launch; the avial gig is expected at the end, so plenty of time. Chose the option 2 as the service center will close by 7 PM, even though they have a huge banner saying “Smile more, our working hours extended from 8AM to 8PM!” On my way while passing by the amphitheatre, I could see avial guys in the stage sound checking. Stopped the bike, now I’m double minded. Avial or guitar class? Trinity grade 3 exam is near. But there are more classes left. This might be the one Avial thing that is too good to miss one part. Hmm! decided. Avial! Called my friend Abu (@Auslay), and updated him about the status here. He luckily had a friend who is a friend of the band and he promised me an easy acquaintance with the band.
So now we are at the amphitheater, Abu’s friend is yet to come. Rex, Mithun and Binny on stage, busy with sound check. Tony also there chatting with the sound engineer. So where’s Neha? (@nehasnair, the recent member of the band doing the female vocal duties).
Me(tweet): “@nehasnair i can c u guys sound chkin. Whr r u?”
Me: “Hey, there she is!”
Abu: “Oh! okay, you go meet her!”
Abu: “Yea! What are you waiting for?”
Me: “Okay, I tweeted her.. Let her reply. After that I’ll go..”
Abu: “Why? Are you afraid?”
Abu: “Ah! you’re afraid.. Lets go meet her.”
Neha (tweet): “@rageshctech am sitting in the first row..blue chair”
Me: “I got her reply..”
Abu: “I’m going there..”
Me: “Hey, wait.. Okay, I’ll come..”
So we met her, couldn’t talk much as I already had butterflies in my stomach! Got to know that her roots are also from my hometown Thrissur. Next target is Tony. I had met him once here at this same venue. So me moving towards the so-called-arrogant(?) Tony!
Tony: “Hey, Buddy!”
Surprise! Tony recognized me! It was a year before that we met and that was at a late night too..
Me: “Wow! you recognize me!”
Tony: “I never forget a face I see!”
That was a short conversation too and I wasn’t satisfied with that, but he seems busy there. By that time, Abu’s friend Bobby whom I previously mentioned came, he told me a lot about the history of the band! From what I could understand from him, the band is going through a tough situation after two individuals: Anand the vocalist and John the composer left the band, eventhough that happened years ago. He praised Anand and sympathised on how he had to quit his singing career.
Unfair Incident 1
After a long time sound checking the program is yet to start, natana is yet to be launched. Prithviraj, the youth icon and the one promising actor in malayalam film industry will have to come and inaugurate the function. Good thing! No offence. But why the heck did they move the drum set aside after sound check? The was one of the most idiotic thing the event organizers could do. If their program needs all this to be done, why did they ask them to sound check before the event? Highly disappointed to hear from the band that they didn’t get enough time to sound check because of this mess-up.
Avial had a different lineup this time. The Amrita Super Star (reality show) fame Job Kurian is also there. They wanted to pour some masala in to avial, which I didn’t like much. But insertion of film songs is a crowd pleaser when performing inside Kerala. They started off with Njan aara, And I must say that was perfect. Screw the youtube videos! Tony was singing nicely. The second one was Aaraanda I think. We really enjoyed singing along, even though the crowd support in that sense was very less. Their upcoming track Ayyo, then chekkele, Karukara all rocked! And a special mention required for the Nagumo sung by Neha! Great singing and it was absolutley a sweet blend with rock. There was film songs like “Humma humma” sung by Job in between, which essentially woke up many of the rock-unaware people. Great work there by Yakzan(Vidwan) on Keyboard!
Unfair Incident 2
A group of people were really drunk, and unfortunately these people turned out to be terrible attention seekers (Need to check their liquor brand). They started by throwing the flowers used for decorating the stage at the band and when they ran out of flowers, began to throw whatever they got in their hands. Rex had his guitar wet because of this and they stopped playing for a moment and demanded the crowd to behave themselves or take good-bye and good night from the band. Thanks to the band for continuing the concert. As usual, Nada nada was the last one and in that one I almost lost my control and headbanged! I really got alienated for doing that and I could see someone throwing his stupid sarcastic gaze at me! Come on guys! Haven’t you ever seen someone headbanging? Get a life!
I consider myself lucky to have long chat with all the band members after the concert including another band Vidwan which works with avial as a single unit. I don’t want to say what all I asked and what they said to me, that’s exclusively for me! It was a long chat with all and they were patient and humble enough to hear from me and to let me hear. That was indeed a memorable night! Go Avial! Keep Rocking!