|This article relies on references to primary sources. (July 2012)|
|Origin||Kochi, Kerala, India|
|Genres||Rock, Progressive Rock, World Music, Carnatic Music|
|Past members||Suraj Mani
Motherjane is an Indian rock band from Kochi, India, formed in 1996. The band consists of John Thomas (drums and percussion), Clyde Rozario (bass guitar), Deepu Sasidharan (guitar, backing vocals), Santhosh Chandran (guitar), and Vivek Thomas (vocals). They have released a total of two studio albums, and three singles. Since their formation, genres like progressive rock and Carnatic music have influenced their music.
Formation and early days
Motherjane was formed in 1996 by drummer John Thomas and bassist Clyde Rozario to "fill in" for another band which had backed out from a college festival at St. Albert's College, Kochi. The initial line up consisted of John Thomas (drums), Clyde Rozario (bass), Mithun (guitars) and Laji (vocals). Vocalist Laji soon left the band and Motherjane had to continue as an instrumental band without a vocalist. In 1999 lead guitarist Mithun left the band and was replaced by Baiju Dharmajan. Around that time, Motherjane used to jam at a restaurant called Ancient Mariner at Marine Drive, Kochi. In 2000, Suraj Mani a HVAC engineer by training, who used to perform with Bangalore based rock bands, shifted to Kochi and chanced to meet the band at the Ancient Mariner. Thomas invited Mani to sing with the band, but he was not satisfied with the band only doing covers and not writing original material. Mani became the bands vocalist and wrote Motherjane's first original song "Disillusioned" soon after. About the same time, Motherjane recruited yet another guitarist, Rex Vijayan. Things took a slight detour after six months, when Mani moved back to Bangalore, but they continued to meet and jam as a band.
Insane Biography (2002-2003)
Motherjane released their debut album, Insane Biography in 2002 under Kan & Will Records. The songs "Maya" and "Soul Corporations" had strong Indian musical elements which would continue in later albums. "Soul Corporations" was featured in Geki-Teki Metal, a compilation album released in Japan in 2004. Soon after the release of Insane Biography, rhythm guitarist Rex Vijayan left the band in 2003, and was replaced by Deepu Sasidharan. Sasidharan, at that time, was playing with the Kochi based Hard Rock band 13AD. Insane Biography was the only Indian album to be featured in the Asian Rock Rising Festival in Japan on November 1, 2003. The band also headlined Levi’s Great Indian Rock 2003.
Maktub which was released in 2008, marked a change in Motherjane's musical style. Influence of Carnatic music was prominently seen in the guitar, vocals and percussion, and native instruments like the chenda were used. In 2009, Rolling Stone India named Maktub as the album of the year.
In 2008, Motherjane opened for Megadeth and Machine Head in Rock in India 2008, Bangalore and for Opeth in Saarang '08 at IIT Madras. Motherjane has been a frequent headliner of college rock festivals across India.
Motherjane was ranked No. 1 in Rock Street Journal's bands of the decade in 2010. In the 2010 AVIMA Awards, Motherjane won the award for the Most Popular Act of Asia, and lead vocalist Suraj Mani was awarded Best Rock Vocalist. In the 2009 AVIMA Awards, Motherjane was awarded the Best Rock Act.
In November 2010, Motherjane on their website announced guitarist Baiju Dharmajan's departure from the band to work with his new band Wrenz United. In January 2011 Motherjane announced that Santhosh Chandran has joined the band as the band's new guitarist. Motherjane's vocalist left the band in November 2011 citing health problems. He was replaced by Vivek Thomas who joined Motherjane in December 2011.
- John Thomas – Drums (1996–present)
- Clyde Rozario – Bass (1996–present)
- Deepu Sasidharan – Guitar (2003–present)
- Santhosh Chandran – Guitar (2011–present)
- Vivek Thomas – Vocals (2011–present)
- Suraj Mani – Vocals (2000–2011)
- Baiju Dharmajan – Lead guitar (1999–2010)
- Rex Vijayan – Rhythm guitar (2000–2003)
- Laji – Vocals – (1996–2000)
- R. Mithun – Lead guitar – (1996–1999)
- Biju Peter – Vocals
- Deepak Dev
- Insane Biography (2001)
- Maktub (2008)
- Tribes of Babel (2010)
- Jihad (2010)
- No Contest (2011)
- "Official Band Profile" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-10-24.
- "Suraj Mani Engineers". Retrieved 2010-10-24.
- James, Bobin (25 July 2009). "Motherjane: An Indian Tale". Rolling Stone India. Retrieved 2012-07-14.
- "Aum-i Artistes:About Us". Retrieved 2010-10-24.
- "Motherjane enthrals Sunday crowd". The Hindu. 2007-10-08. Retrieved 2010-10-24.
- "Ethnic Spirits, Global Rock" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-10-26.
- "Not Megadeth enough". The Hindu. 2008-03-23. Retrieved 2010-10-24.
- "RSJ Band of the Decade". Retrieved 2010-10-26.
- "FULL AVIMA 2010 Winners List (Official Release)". Retrieved 2010-10-26.
- "AVIMA 2009: And the winners are...". Retrieved 2010-10-26.