By GMA's Bangladesh correspondent Nabil Abaddon
If you follow our interviews regularly or keep track of what goes on around the South-East Asian Extreme Metal scene, then you should know about the uprising Bangladeshi Black / Death Metal force called Nafarmaan! Nafarmaan, which means 'the detested', 'the disobedient', 'the blasphemer' in Arabic / Urdu, was founded back in 2008 by the drumming virtuoso Nohttzver, who is also known as the co-founder of the legendary band Weapon.
Of course, one has to know that Weapon was initially founded in Bangladesh, released an EP called “Violated Hejab” and then shifted to Canada. Nafarmaan unleashed their diabolic rage against all the false paradigms on stage for the first time on 16th of November at the Banish The Posers Fest, which was put up by the local cult organization Primitive Invocation and featured bands from Thailand, Malaysia, India and Bangladesh. A full gig review will be coming your way soon.
I spoke with Nohttzver just a few days before the show and talked about Nafarmaan’s upcoming debut EP, future plans and also tried to throw a glance at his story of getting into the devil’s music and much much more.
Welcome to GMA once again brother Nohttzver. Well firstly let me tell you that Nafarmaan looks awesome in the rehearsal video (Bloodsoaked Revelations); which has been uploaded on Youtube a few days back! So when is the EP “Quayamat Lullaby” coming out?
Great talking to you guys as always. Yeah the rehearsal video was captured by a close brother of ours Sajid [Roadkill Tilt], the response of which has been outstanding so far. The EP is due for release in two formats; Tape (200 Copies) via Graceless Recordings (USA) and CDR (Limited to 66 Copies) via Asian label MTD Productions. If everything goes accordingly, both formats will be available within Dec 2013 / Jan 2014. There are also plans for a re-release and also a special release only for the sub-continent with a bonus track. Fans can view the rehearsal video here
As you know, three bands from Bangladesh: Nafarmaan, Enmachined and Abominable Carnivore were supposed to headline at two different Metal fests in Kolkata and Mumbai in September, but could not go to India due to Visa complications. How do you see this issue? If I am not mistaken, the organizers from Kolkata, Putrid Ascendancy has postponed their event Ritual Ascension Fest to December. Any updates on that?
Yeah it is just ridiculously f***ed up. The Embassy people involved with these Visa formalities are lame and uneducated Motherfu*kers. I’m sure that the guys from the other bands who were involved with the fests in India will surely agree with me on this as well. You’re right about Ritual Ascension Fest getting postponed to December. However, it seems that it might get postponed further until we all resolve our visa glitches. If we fail, then the show must go on and in that case we’ve already officially told Putrid Ascendancy to do the fest without Nafarmaan headlining. Our brothers from Putrid Ascendancy especially Carnage Desecrator have been more than supportive and their cooperation on the matter deserves sheer respect.
So BTPF is going to be Nafarmaan’s debut gig. What awaits the Metalheads? What should they expect from the band at the event?
Yes it will be. What awaits...don’t want to say much on that since one needs to witness Nafarmaan live when they are their most lethal.
Tell us a bit about yourself Nohttzver, how did it all start for you? As in discovering Metal music, playing drums and everything. Who are your inspirations in drumming?
(laughs) that will take quite a while to sum up. It started at the very early age of ten; 1989 to be exact. I’ve said this in another interview and probably will say this always. None of this would’ve ever happened If I hadn’t watched Legendary Bangladeshi Metal / Rock band ‘Rock- Strata’ Live in 1988. Watching them live with Legendary Bangladeshi drummer Mahbubur Rashid on drums did it for me. I also owe much to my elder brother who was a bassist himself and was responsible for introducing me to Metal. In 1992 I formed ‘Phantom Lord’ along with Ex-Rock Brigade members, a lineup that specialized in Heavy Metal and Thrash, and later ‘Metal Warriors’ was formed with the same lineup but with the exception of the former vocalist. I’ve also worked in a popular mainstream act of the country called ‘Ark’ from 1993 to 1996, which actually f**ed me up rather than help me with music. Then around 2004, Weapon came along which I co-founded along with longtime friend Vetis Monarch. I guess you know the rest.There are quite a few drumming inspiration ranges from John Bonham, Igor Cavelera, Dave Lombardo, Neil Peart to Ustad Allah Rakkha Khan.
The “Violated Hejab” line up: from left to right Kapalyq (now known as Skullbearer), Vetis Monarch and Nohttzver.
Would you like to take us through your war-gears?
Well at the present I don’t have much of it, except my Eight and half inch Pearl Snare (Steel), a pair of Good Sabian High-Hats, a worn out Zildjian China and a pair of Axis Longboards XL2 pedals.I guess I’ve only kept the stuffs that best represent my signature. I’ve also got a quiet big and rare collection of drumsticks which is also one of my hobbies.I miss my old kit and I hope I get to build one once again.
You are also known for designing the legendary logo of Weapon as well as the logo of Nafarmaan afterwards. Recently, I have noticed some pictures of you making the design of Enmachined’s merch on Facebook. How did that come about? Have you ever thought of doing this professionally?
Weapon’s logo is something I will always be proud of! Firstly, I don’t draw professionally. It is more like a hobby and a passion kinda thing for me. Well, the Enmachined kids were stuck with what to come up with or who to approach for their debut shirt. It was actually Abir (the vocalist of Enmachined) who shared the problem with me and our talks progressed and I asked him as a brother if they needed my help with their artwork. I asked for a day to come up with a draft but ended up doing the final one instead. I think I called him after half an hour later and handed it over to him.
You were the co-founder of Weapon and now you have founded Nafarmaan. Whats that particular thing in Black / Death Metal that made you choose this path and has kept you in it for this many years? How do you define this sub-genre of Metal?
Black / Death Metal is not everyone’s cup of tea. I mean one just does not like this form of extreme metal. Personally, it always had a huge impact and significance in my life and I felt the most comforting in expressing myself through this extreme art form. I have always led life in a rebelliously turbulent and hostile way and always sought the most pleasure exploiting and indulging in the extreme; may it be perception, religion, war whatever. Black / Death Metal is a vile form of art and it’s the last thing for soothing ears and timid cupid hearts.The relation and the connection has to come from within. This is what best defines me.
I would like to ask you a question that I have asked in my earlier interview with brother Skullbearer. What do you make of the decision that Vetis Monarch has taken to let go of the Metal musician’s life for good?
Well it is his life, so it is his Decision. But I am proud of the fact that he took Weapon where it is today.
During the Weapon era in Bangladesh; Vetis Monarch and Nohttzver during their practice sessions!
What are the future plans for Nafarmaan?
As you already know we have also recorded two extra tracks apart from the four tracks in the EP, so the obvious judgment for those unreleased tracks would be either be a Compilation or a Split. I can vouch for the band and say that Nafarmaan is productive and active than ever. The songwriting is going simply great. Five songs have already been written for the Full-length, three amongst them are good for recording. Apart from that and as you already know, Nafarmaan is live ready and we are keen on impaling our flag of Nafarmaany on foreign territories as well as participate in worthy domestic onslaughts from now onwards.
Gratitudes for your time Brother! Eagerly waiting for the EP and looking forward to the debut performance. Ave! Would you like to say anything to your fans?
Gratitude to you and GMA, your support have been much appreciated. The wait for the EP will soon be over and I can also assure you that Nafarmaan will have some great news for you in 2014. As for the fans ...Stay true, if not to metal at least to yourself !! Check out the EP teaser here.
“In metal there are a handful of successors. Most of them fail to reach out to the listeners. This isn’t because they are fated to do so, but because they took the wrong turn!”
By GMA's Bangladesh Correspondent Nabil Abaddon
Morbidity is one of the vilest Death Metal bands existing in Bangladesh who are keeping the ancient torch of OSDM still alive and held high in this region. As they like to call themselves ‘Skull Crushing Death Metal’, Morbidity surely got that flair in their sound and attitude to match up-to their promise of bringing forward pure Old School Death Metal massacre!
Formed in 2011, Morbidity earned accolades at home and abroad in 2012 with their demo ‘Pits of Eternal Torment’ and are going to release their debut full length album next year via Me Saco Un Ojo Records! If that’s not all for OSDM fans, then they should know that Morbidity are going to perform at the Banish The Posers Fest on 16th November after their short hiatus, which is going to be the country’s first international Extreme Metal show featuring bands from Bangladesh, India, Thailand and Malaysia. I managed to catch up with Azerate, the guitarist of Morbidity and had a chat about the band and their music.
Apocalyptic hails to you Azerate! How is the band preparing for the upcoming event Banish The Posers Fest? How excited is the band for the gig? Also tell our readers what you exactly mean by the moniker ‘Morbidity’.
Greetings, brother Abaddon. We are content for the gig and the rehearsals are going well. I think you know the actual meaning of Morbidity, that it is the state of being Morbid and that’s what we follow.
I have noticed that Morbidity always maintains a very low profile and only performs in gigs put up by Primitive Invocation. What are the reasons behind these?
Yes, we do maintain a very low profile; we like to keep things this way. Primitive Invocation is the only organizer who puts the kind of show that we like to perform. If there was some other organizer who would put some good lineup, we would definitely give it a try.
So Morbidity’s full length album is coming out soon. The teaser on YouTube sounds quite promising. Please tell us more about the album. Is it going to be a conceptual one? What do the lyrical themes deal with?
Yes, it’s coming out via Me Saco Un Ojo Records (UK) in LP format. Though it was fixed to be released this year but due to some unavoidable circumstances it will be releasing the year after. The album has that Scandinavian, especially Swedish and Finnish Death Metal sound that is rare to hear in these parts of the globe along with distinctive morbid flavors of our own, in one word it will be “CRUSHING”. The lyrical theme deals with Death, Darkness and Occultism.
Readers can view the morbidity album teaser here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTmaTvsuBDc&feature=youtu.be
Being an Old School Death Metal band in 2013, with all the modern technology available now, do you think releasing demo tapes with muddy production is still necessary? Or is it just to make the ‘Old School’ statement?
Haha! The term “old school” obliterates the moment the production and sound quality is polished and glossy. The mission statement of OSDM is to create the sound as our forefathers shaped which is raw, dark and evil. For me a demo should be created as raw and filthy that it can be.
Well tell us a bit about yourself Azerate! What gears do you use for live and recording? Also tell us about your influences in music.
My prized possessions are Dean Razorback 255 and Pod XT Live which I procured back in 2010. I have used them ever since both in live and for studio sessions. If you ask me as a guitarist then Yngwie J. Malmsteen, Jason Becker, Buckethead, Gary Holt and the list goes on and on. As for bands, one name - Iron Maiden.
What are your five most favorite albums that you’ll never stop listening to?
Azerate: Tough answer indeed.
Iron Maiden – Seventh Son of a Seventh Son
Sodom – Persecution Mania
Asphyx – Last One on Earth
Crypt Of Kerberos – World of Myths
Gammacide – Victims of Science
You joined Morbidity in 2011. What are the changes that you have noticed in the local scene since then? How difficult is it to find Metal musicians of the same taste in Bangladesh?
Well, to begin with I was about to join Morbidity back in 2010 but due to working with two other bands I couldn’t do so. Though, the concept and the music always allured me. After joining them what I realized was how little knowledge I possessed about death metal especially OSDM and how far, out-reached its realm was, which made me astounded. Yes, the scene changed drastically during 2012. Every other band was doing old school metal and people’s taste was reaching to newer limits. They finally realized which was true and which was not. And I’m glad to be a part of it. And about finding musicians with similar tastes, It isn’t difficult to find them if u look in the right places haha. Yes, I do believe 2-3 years back it was hard to locate them but now every other guy I know does good music and I always support music which is good.
You also have an Old School Thrash Metal Band called Nuclear Winter right? Would you like to tell us a bit about that band? What’s that particular thing in Old School era that attracts you so much and made you be parts of two different outlets of Old School Metal?
Nuclear Winter is a straight out Thrash Metal project which aims to deliver fast paced nuclear thrash attack, distinctive in nature. The band is busy with the rehearsal tape which would be out soon from Hellhouse666 Productions.
Old school music has that raspy, gruesome, evil sound about it that allures me the most. The fact is that, in metal there are a handful of successors. Most of them fail to reach out to the listeners. This isn’t because they are fated to do so, but because they took the wrong turn. Reasons are obvious, I think you know that too. As a rule, they have no actual artistic drive and they try to imitate other superior acts. Sadly, they won’t be getting any of it and would wind up somewhere else. Old school music defines my ideas and creates an atmosphere, a platform for me to pass it to the listeners. Both of the bands know what they preach and will triumph evidently.
What are your future plans for Morbidity apart from the full length album? Any chances of performing overseas?
All will be unveiled pretty soon. We ask our supporters to hold onto their sits. As for the shows, we are already taking arrangements for performing overseas.
Thanks for your time brother! Much appreciated. The last words are yours….
Thanks to you too for the immense support and the interview. Only death is real.