India's doom mainstays Bevar Sea have raked in global attention since the release of their self-titled debut album back in 2012. The record showcased a fairly young band playing doom with generous influence from 70s hard rock, with all the hooks, melodies and blues-favoured riffs you'd expect from that combo. The positive response worldwide to the album went a long way to putting them on the map, even as far as earning them a slot at the Maryland Deathfest in the USA, one of the .
Two years later, with a bit more experience and skill under their belt, the band wrapped up writing new songs for the second album, and on November 2014, they entered a 10-day whirlwind recording session at Adarsh Recording Studio in their hometown of Bangalore.
Band founder and de facto producer weighed in on the experience: "We went in with way better preparation this time around. With help from our experienced FoH engineer Nikhil Pai, we found the best drum room in town, with the kind of mics and other assorted equipment we wanted, in order to get the sound we had imagined in our heads. The recording process was a breeze, and that’s something we couldn’t have imagined in 2011 during the first album’s production. Matt Lynch (Mysterious Mammal Studios, also the bassist of the amazing Snail) had been on board from the pre-production stage, so we talked and agreed on what had to be done to capture the best tones and performances from everyone, and to have things ready for Matt to do his mixes. We weren’t going to do any editing, sampling, or time aligning, so it was important that we got things right at the source the old fashioned way. I was very happy with the results we got, and Matt has since been able to give us the mixes we deserve.”
Matt Lynch had this to say about things from his side of the fence: “I can tell they worked really hard on the preproduction and tracking process, and after hearing the rough mixes of the new tunes, it was clear that this record is going to turn some heads not just in India, but around the globe.”
About what can be expected of the music on the new album, Panaman said, “It’s still broadly stoner and doom metal, but it’s also completely different from anything we did on the first album. It’s darker, at times faster and more metal, and for complete contrast, we’ve also got two entirely slow dirges.”
“Invoke the Bizarre” is the album title, and its track list follows:
1. Bearded and Bizarre
2. Bury me in NOLA
4. Where there’s Smoke (there’s a Pyre)
5. Sleeping Pool
6. The Grand Alignment
Vocalist and lyricist-in-chief Ganesh Krishnaswamy took a different approach to the album's themes this time around. While it won't lay claim to being a concept album, there's still a discernible string that ties it all together. According to him, "The album is set in Elder Time; time before time as we humans know it, when practitioners of ancient magic and the occult rose up against the greed and might of a system that was knee deep in rot, corruption and avarice.”
The album’s artwork is once again being handled by in-house doodler Rahul Chacko, who continues with the underwater theme that was first explored on the debut album’s multi-panel artwork. Taking time off his busy schedule, he said, “The painting for the album cover depicts the birth of a creature in answer to the cosmic summons to overthrow the despotic regime. In a way, it represents the band's sound on the second album - less catchy, with more of an ugly slithering feel to it.”
As for the remaining artwork for the album: “The first album had illustrations for each song, but all those were done beforehand for projection slides to use at gigs or for merch. This time, the entire album will be unified by one cohesive landscape with elements from all the songs. It'll definitely feel a lot more 'together' than the first, since everything is being done from scratch and specifically designed to take advantage of the physical formats.”
Invoke the Bizarre is set to release later in 2015, with the exact date to be set soon. Until then, the band has released the ten minute song, “Sleeping Pool” on their Soundcloud channel.
Incidentally, this was the song that Matt loved the most from the demo stages. In his own words, “Sleeping Pool is the crown jewel of the record, and I couldn't wait to sink my teeth into the mix to get it as huge as possible. It's ten minutes of sludgy doom that draws you in from the first muted guitar chugs, into the crushing swing and finally the swaggering, pummeling end riff takes you over the edge into a hypnotic, bludgeoned trance-state, devolving into a feast of backmasking and delay loops that sounds like a giant cyclops stumbling through the demonic end scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark.”
Bevar Sea are:
Ganesh Krishnaswamy - vocals
Rahul Chacko - guitars
Srikanth Panaman - guitars
Avinash Ramchander - bass
Deepak Raghu - drums
For queries, interviews, tie-ups, and gigs, the band can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.