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power ballads Members of Parikrama
power ballads Members of Parikrama

Parikrama turns 18 this year. The rock band who have opened for Iron Maiden seven times till date, state it feels great to turn adult

A psychedelic explosion of musical sounds and lights flare up on stage. A kaleidoscope of mind-blowing lyrics and orchestration with the fusion of some traditional and western instruments is what Parikrama is all about at a recent performance.

The crowd sang along as they delivered some of their all-time favourites such as “Vapourise”, “But it rained”, “Open skies”, “Am I dreaming” among others. Screechy lyrics, spectacular rifts and some good old rock and roll poured out of the elevated stage as Parikrama gave yet another breath-taking performance.

Parikrama comprises Nitin Malik singing the lead vocals, Subir Malik playing the keyboard and synthesiser, Sonam Sherpa picking the lead guitar, Saurabh Choudhary strumming the rhythm guitar, Chintan Kalra plucking the bass guitar and doing the backing vocals and Srijan Mahajan on the drums. They are accompanied by Imran Khan on the violin and Shambhunath Bhattacharya playing the tabla and percussion.

All through the last 18 years, experimentation formed the crux of Parikrama’s music. They have fused their music with every imaginable instrument and are currently applying the violin and tabla in their repertoire of sounds. They describe themselves as a blues based rock band with nuances of metal.

Excited about turning 18 this year, Parikrama’s founder member and keyboardist, Subir Malik says, “It feels great finally becoming adults this year! To celebrate this special occasion, we had over 50 musicians from different genres jamming up at the Hard Rock Café in New Delhi for a three and a half hour programme of out-of-the-world music.”

Talking about the band’s name, Subir says: “We wanted to adopt an Indian Hindi name when we kicked off in 1991. Our vocalist, Nitin found the name from an Osho magazine he picked up, titled “Vishwa Parikrama” and the name stuck. Over the years, the name has become synonymous with our way of life.” Describing Parikrama’s roots, he adds they formed straight out of school and college and slowly climbed up the ladder to ground themselves in music.

Ruminating about their first performance in the autumn of 1991 in New Delhi at Father Agnel School, Subir exclaims that there was no stopping them after that. Beginning with Delhi’s AIDS awareness concert, the band went on to open for Iron Maiden several times and also performed at the Download Festival 2007 alongside some of the world’s best bands at Donington Park, England. Parikrama also did a nationwide metro tour with Saif Ali Khan last January adding another feather to their cap. The list is nearly endless.

“We never imagined we would reach such heights especially to be recognised by Maiden. The crowd at Bangalore’s Iron Maiden concert cheered us on and that really inspired us. Maiden loved our music so much that they requested us to open for them again and we’ve done seven concerts with them so far.”

Over the years, Parikrama has felt strongly about certain issues and carries them in their music.

One of their most moving songs is “But it rained” which is based on the abduction of four kidnapped tourists in Kashmir and those left behind. “One” was a song written in response to the terror attacks in Mumbai.

ALLEN MOSES. R

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