Youthsparks caught with the pioneers of Black metal in Bangladesh and discussed about their journey throughout these years and how they tackled all the problems and are still going strong. The band is none other than Satanik.
How did Satanik get the idea of forming a Black Metal band and how did the idea came to existence?
Satanik came to existence in 2001 and it had me (Shawon) on guitars, Kakon on bass and vocals, Xem on guitars and vocals and Rupom on drums. The initial idea behind forming a death metal band at that time in Bangladesh was just to do something out of the box; something unique. We need to understand what happens outside of our country. Guys with a unique sound succeed and the others cannot, because their sound, as a band, matches with someone else, and this does not give the listeners anything new from their music.
The listeners ask this question. What is Technical Brutal Black Metal? How does Satanik put forward the idea and present it?
Simply put, these 4 words are just there to define our sound and nothing else. If we look at the technicality of the term, our sound includes technical death metal patterns; it also includes brutal black metal patterns, in terms of the guitar riffages. So, to sum it up, the sound we produce is a combination of all these genres and it does create a new and “not monotonous” sound for our listeners.
What were the inspirations that drove Satanik towards Extreme form of Metal music?
There is a certain misconception we face today. People think that we only listen to death metal or black metal and other stuffs related to these. That is wrong. What everyone needs to understand is the fact that we are musicians and we listen to music, and it is wrong to tag us like that. For example, I might do extreme metal music but I never backed down from listening to Bach, Mozart and Pagnini. I never backed down from listening to progressive stuffs, bands like Dream Theater or Opeth. We do admit that we got inspired to do extreme music from other international extreme metal bands but we always chose rich music to listen to, pieces from which we can learn from. So, when we are questioned on this, obviously, the word “music” is our inspiration.
What were the problems that Satanik come across, along their 11 years of journey?
I don’t think we need to go to the depth of this issue. The problems we faced were somewhat obvious to us. For instance, there was a time we used to go up to musicians and we used to tell them that, we do extreme metal music. The other musicians and seniors of course, used to give us a very weird look as if we did a sin by opting for extreme music! There were also times when the band struggled, in terms of having proper musicians. Within this glorious 11 years, believe it or not, Satanik changed band members for up to 20 times at least! On further levels, we did not have a large pool of people to make them listen to our music and give us a good feedback. There were instances when we used to record a track and we used to give those records to our friends and tell them to listen to our track patiently, regardless of the fact that you don’t like the genre at all. We did a lot in a musical “stone age” of this country but this never discouraged us, neither did we back down. We had a vision in our minds and we still do. We dreamt that our music will expand, it happened and now we are dreaming big. This might be a few good words for newbie’s in our music scene. We never stopped dreaming big. Dreams and visions do not have limits attached to it. So, the more you dream, the more you prosper.
Listen to Satanik’s single ‘Ceremony’:
What is the exact philosophy upon which a Black Metal band like Satanik stands upon?
Well, it is obvious that there will be no general set of ideas that a black metal band follows but there are certain areas that we all need to cover. If anyone visits our website, they can read the philosophies upon which this band stands upon but I believe, for one to understand the real meaning of the words written there, he needs to think, analyze and reach the depth of the material there. What everyone needs to understand is the initial stage of the band. It is obvious that these philosophies do not exist right from the start of the band. It took us time to search for them and to create a set of ideologies to follow. Now, explaining this; understand this, everything has two sides. Positivity and negativity. This is a universal truth. For every electron, there is a proton. For every positive current terminal, there is a negative terminal. Similarly, for every human being, there is a positive side, which is driven by God or a positive energy. The other is the negative side, which is driven by a negative energy and in this case, we take this side to be driven by Satan. For the kind of music we do, the first one is already cancelled. This does not at all mean that we are bunch of bad guys spreading Satans’ propaganda and telling people to come to the dark. That is not true. What we need to understand is how Black metal is conceived by artists all over the world. They have a different attitude, in terms of presenting themselves in front of the people. For instance, Dimmu Borgir or Cannibal Corpses. If you analyze the lyrical content of Cannibal Corpses, you would definitely understand that the things they write are not the things they do, but they carry an attitude which is easily recognizable as the “dark side”. Now, in order to do this kind of music, it is must that we carry the same attitude. We are representing the works of Satan, and in order to do it, we need to have the perfect attitude for people to understand what is good and what is bad.
So does your lyrics spread Satanik propaganda? Or does it suggest something else entirely?
As I stated just now, People need to understand what is good and what is bad; and this is exactly what we do with our lyric. We do not spread any Satanic propaganda, neither we tell people to come to the dark side, nor we preach the words of Satan, but we do tell the world about what is good and what is bad. Our lyrics are nothing but metaphors. Sounds like “Satanic” but means something different entirely. Simply put, if something is bad, we tell them bad. The rest is for them to choose. For example, in our single Azrael, the message portrayed to the people is plain and simple, and something we all know. We depicted two images of Azrael and we let people know that these are the two versions you can face. You might see Azrael looking all horrific and a huge reaper, ruthlessly pulling your soul of you while you cannot breath, neither can you stand the pain, nor can you do anything about it. On the other hand, we portrayed another picture of Azrael greeting you properly, and with proper manners, he is asking you to go with him as your time is over. Thus, you experience a pain-less death. At the end, the message is conveyed. It is up to you to choose which version of Azrael you want to look into because, you are the one deciding it with your own actions in your lifetime. Therefore, the choice is yours and yours only. All our lyrics convey a certain message which aware people of the good and the bad and, in some cases, about their consequences.
Listen to Satanik’s single ‘Azrael’:
As the pioneers of Black Metal in Bangladesh, what advice would Satanik give to the new and amateurs of this country?
For instance, I am making a sculpture and there are a lot of girls around. If my vision is to impress the girls around me so that they stare at me or if my vision is to impress any random person, then I would be looking around me and I would be concentrating on my surrounding more than my work. This mindset would ruin my art work and I would be left with no art work and no-one to impress. Similar is the case with music. If you think you play music to bang your head in the air, or to impress girls or to do a few shows, then definitely, you are not on the right track and this will cut down your chances of mastering the art. In order to be successful with the music you do, you need to determined of your goal and you need to put all your concentration on it. As a musician, you always need to be practicing your art. Practicing will only make it perfect. Do keep in mind to compare yourself with musicians outside of our country. That is why, regular practices are a must. With proper grammar and with ample amount of practice, you are destined to be successful.
What is installed for your fans in the future? What awaits them?
We would hit the studios this February for our solo record. We hope to make this an international record. We have a few international record labels in our hands and we will initiate talks with them after the recording is complete.
Where does Satanik see itself after 20 years?
We believe we want to go till the very end. We want to see this band till our last breath. So 20 years is a very short time to ask.
Anything for your fans?
We request everyone to listen to good and rich music. Music from which everyone can learn, fans and musicians alike. This will help u make a society who loves good music.
Musicians such as these are no less than inspirations. A band which was struggling for so long and were still able to stick to what they are doing is a mammoth job deserving nothing but respect and applause. On their 11 year, Youthsparks wishes Satanik the best of luck on their international album and hope that they will continue to make better music than before, and uphold our country in the international arena.
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