Bollywood is the largest film producer in India and one of the largest centers of film production in the world. Bollywood is the informal term popularly used for the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbai – formerly known as Bombay -, Maharashtra, India. The name “Bollywood” is derived from Bombay and Hollywood, the center of the American film industry, but unlike Hollywood, Bollywood does not exist as a physical place. Slumdog Millionaires anybody? Going to Bollywood? Or… Bloodywood?
It was only a matter of time till India begun delivering also rock bands on the conveyor. And here we go, we’ve got Pentagram. Not very original band name, several other bands all over the world use it, but “Bloodywood” is a quite catchy album title. I didn’t take too seriously this one, but well, I was wrong. “Bloodywood” is an excellent modern rock/metal album.
Regarded as one of the pioneers of original Indian independent music, Pentagram is a four piece Indian rock/electronica band started in 1994 in Mumbai, India.
Fronted by Vishal Dadlani (one half of the film music producing duo Vishal-Shekhar) with Randolph Correia (also of Shaa’ir + Func) on guitars, Papal Mane on bass and Shiraz Bhattacharya (also of Shkabang) on drums, Pentagram received recognition and fame by winning three major rock competitions at the Kanpur, Delhi and Bombay IIT’s. Of these, Livewire, the annual band competition at IIT Bombay, secured them a record deal with Plus Music and led to the release of their debut album “We Are Not Listening” in 1996 which became the fastest selling rock album in India.
The second album, “Up” released in 2002, it was rated by Indiecision as one of the top 25 albums of the decade. Following their increasing popularity they headlined the Sundance Music Festival in Estonia in 2003. In 2005 were invited to, and played at the Glastonbury Music Festival where they shared the stage with international contemporary giants like Coldplay, Chemical Brothers, Tori Amos, Fat Boy Slim and White Stripes.
Pentagram released their third album “Itâ€™s OK, Itâ€™s All Good” in 2007 on their own record label, Pentagram Music.
The band released their fourth studio album, “Bloddywood” in March 2011. It’s sound familiar, kind of intimate and friendly. And it’s rock, it’s metal, it’s a breathing mixture of quite different styles and sounds, but sounds like nothing else. While “Technology â€“ I Get You” reminds me of Sting, “Mental Zero” could find it place on any Clawfinger album for instance. That’s how colorful, how intense it’s this album.
02. This Could Get Ugly
03. Mental Zero
04. Tomorrowâ€™s Decided
05. Lovedrug Climbdown
06. Paper Toys
07. Human Failings
08. Must I
09. In My Head
10. Technology â€“ I Get You
11. Let Go
12. No 2 Ways
They said about the album: “Bloodywood. Strange name. Catches the eye, no matter where you’re from. Which is sorta why we chose it. More than that, through all the thought we’ve put into it, and through all the chats we’ve had about it, it’s come to mean the exact conceptual counterpoint, or even antidote, to the overwhelming mainstream.”
And it’s something very catchy, very pulsing, very alive about “Bloodywood”. Quite a surprise, a band to keep an eye on.