Warfaze

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Warfaze
Warfaze current.jpg
Background information
Origin Bangladesh
Genres Heavy Metal, Hard Rock, Progressive Rock,
Years active 1984–present
Labels G-series, Ektaar Music Ltd
Associated acts Rock Strata, Aurthohin, Legend, Miles, Bassbaba Sumon, Iqbal Asif Jewel, Aces, Russel Ali, RBR, De-Illumination, Vibe, Winning, In Dhaka, Metalmaze, Artcell
Members Mizan Rahman (vocals)
Sheikh Monirul Alam Tipu (drums and percussion)
Ibrahim Ahmed Kamal (guitar)
Shams Mansoor Ghani (keys)
Naim Haque Roger (bass)
Oni Hasan (guitar)
Past members Babna Karim
Sunjoy
Russel Ali
Fuad Ibn Rabbi
Bassbaba Sumon
Iqbal Asif Jewel
Balam
Biju
Cezanne
Sazzad Arefeen

Warfaze is a Bangladeshi hard rock band. The group consists of lead vocalist Mizan Rahman, Ibrahim Ahmed Kamal (lead guitar), Sheikh Monirul Alam Tipu (drums and percussion), Shams Mansoor Ghani (keyboards and vocals), Naim Haque Roger (bass), and Oni Hasan (lead guitar). Multiple changes have taken place in membership since its founding in 1984. Since their inception, the band has released eight albums, including seven studio albums and one compilation album. In addition, they have released several singles in band mixed albums.

Over the years, Warfaze has featured some of the finest Bangladeshi musicians in the genre, most notably Kamal, Khaled 'Bassbaba' Sumon, guitarist Russel Ali (who currently works with Elliot Yamin), the metal vocalist Sunjay aka Sunjoy etc.

The band has experimented with different subgenres of Hard Rock and Heavy metal over the years. Warfaze's role in the development of progressive metal in Bangladesh has been an inspiration for several Bangladeshi bands, such as Artcell.[1][2]

History[edit]

The First Decade & Breakthrough – Warfaze & Obak Bhalobasha (1984–1994)[edit]

The initial membership consisted of Kamal playing bass, Helal on drums, Mir and Naimul sharing lead and rhythm guitar duties, and Bappi singing vocals. This initial line-up underwent the first of many changes with Helal, Mir and Bappi having to leave the band for personal reasons. The band was far from breaking through to the mainstream music scene in Bangladesh dominated largely by pop acts. Heavy metal music was not much popular in Bangladesh back then.[3]

Kamal took up lead guitar duties for the band at this stage and the rest of the positions were filled with Babna Karim as the bassist, Tipu as the drummer and Rashed as the vocalist. This second line up had to be discontinued when Naimul emigrated to the USA. At the time, there were three other Dhaka-based metal bands: Rock Strata, In Dhaka and Aces. Mashuk, lead guitarist of In Dhaka, and Fuad (of the same band) volunteered to help Warfaze as guest members. At the time, Warfaze was mostly a cover band, covering bands such as Whitesnake, Dokken or Iron Maiden.[4]

Most of the band members, including Kamal had made arrangements for further education in the United States by 1991. However, inspired by Maksud, former vocalist of Feedback, the band performed their own Bengali songs at a concert arranged by BAMBA at the University of Dhaka on 26 April 1991.[4] The bands at this concert decided to make a mixed album, but as it turned out Warfaze had enough songs to be able to release a solo album. The band went to release their self-titled album, Warfaze, in 1991. The album featured the songs Boshe Achi Eka and Ekti Chele. At the time, Bangladeshi music listeners were still new to metal. Any lyrics other than those inspired by romanticism or patriotism were rare. It took several weeks for the album to gain popularity but later succeeded.[3]

The album was followed up by a concert on 7 January 1992 at the Rawa Club.[citation needed] By this time, Russel had joined on keyboards. The next album, Obak Bhalobasha, was released by Sargam in around 1993–94.[3]

Jibondhara, Ashamajik & the Departures of Sunjoy, Babna Karim & Russell Ali (1994–1998)[edit]

The band released the album Jibondhara in 1997, the last time the line-up of Sanjoy, Babna Karim, Russell Ali, Imbrahim Ahmed Kamal, Tipu and guest keyboardist Fuad would play together on the same album.[3]

Iqbal Asif Jewel joined as a guitarist and vocalist from another heavy metal band Legend. Babna was replaced by the bass guitarist Sumon for the next album, Ashamajik.[5]

Russell Ali left the band at this stage to start a music career in the United States later that year and Sumon left to pursue a career both as a solo artist and with his band Aurthohin.[3][5]

Frequent changes in line-up- Aalo & Moharaaj (1999–2007)[edit]

The band underwent many changes in line-up over the next 8 years. Balam, a guitarist, replaced Russell Ali.[6] Mizan replaced Sunjoy on vocals while Shams became a full-time member from 1999 on-wards on keys. This line-up released the album Aalo in 2001.[3]

However, 2002 saw marked changes in the line-up once again with Mizan leaving the band for personal reasons & Kamal taking a break after almost 20 years of continued activity. Kamal joined Sumon's band Aurthohin in 2006. Balam was forced to take up vocal duties & Sazzad was recruited from Metalmaze as a second guitarist. All the while Tipu held the band together and recruited the services of Cézanne, bassist of the upcoming progressive metal band Artcell.[3] Later Balam departed to pursue a solo career in commercial pop.[7]

Kamal rejoined the band in 2007 & recruited Oni Hasan of the band Vibe fame, resulting in a major change in their sound, with neoclassical metal influences especially in live performances. This partnership carried on through to the next decade.[citation needed]

Poth Chola (2008)[edit]

Following the release of a compilation album (sponsored by Nokia) which includes re-recorded versions of their songs along with a couple of new singles titled "Tomake" and "Omanush", the band began touring extensively. With a new and stable line up that had stuck together for almost 5 years then, the band went on to celebrate their silver jubilee at a gala concert which featured performances from past & present members of Warfaze at the Winter Garden, Hotel Sheraton, Dhaka.[2] Tipu announced that a live album featuring recordings from the concert was planned, along with a new studio album which later came out in 2012 titled Shotto.[2]

The band continued to experiment with their sound with the release of a fusion album entitled Somorpon merging elements of Heavy Metal with traditional Bangladeshi folk music as a tribute to Hason Raja & Lalon working with Sumon's band Aurthohin and solo artiste Habib Wahid.[8]

Shotto (2012) and beyond[edit]

Shotto, the new album was released on 21 October 2012 featuring the same line-up as in Poth Chola. Tracks from the album include "Agami", "Na", "Purnota", "Shotto", "Jedin", "Rupkotha", "Jonosrot" and "Projonmo". The album also included an unreleased single from the early 2000s called "Protikkha".[9][10]

With Oni Hasan taking a break for his studies in the United Kingdom, and Kamal recovering from surgeries, the band asked Faisal (from Metal Maze) and Samir from Powersurge and Shrapnel Method to perform as guest members on live shows.[11]

At 12:00 am on 13 February 2013, Warfaze performed at the Projonmo Chattar to show their support for the Shahbag protest in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in demand of capital punishment for Abdul Quader Mollah and all the other accused war criminals of the 1971 Liberation War of Bangladesh. It also marked the return of Kamal with his solos.[12][13]

Side Projects[edit]

Kamal has been working since 2006 as a guest member of the metal outfit Aurthohin, who after overcoming recent setbacks regarding former Warfaze bandmate Sumon's health, have released a new studio album Aushamapto-2. He has also been helping out another underground outfit called Moshpit. Shams has already released a new concept album titled Onibarjo with his symphonic metal band De-illumination, featuring ex-Warfaze member and Metal Maze guitarist Sazzad Arefeen and the young bassist Anabeel Sen, of Stentorian.[14]

Musical style and influences[edit]

The band has been consistently cited as an inspiration by most active heavy metal artists today in Bangladesh as one of the first bands to introduce metal to Bangladesh.[4] The band used to play cover versions of bands like Iron Maiden, Deep Purple, Whitesnake and Dokken in their early years. Kamal has consistently cited the late legendary guitarist Niloy Das popularly known as 'Niloyda' to aspiring guitarists in Bangladesh, as a major source of inspiration.[4] Throughout their career, the band has experimented with multiple genres of rock & metal.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Compilation albums[edit]

  • Poth Chola (2008)

Band members[edit]

Current[edit]

  • Sheikh Monirul Alam Tipu – drums and percussion (since 1986)
  • Mizan Rahman Mizan – vocals (1999–2002 and since 2007-Present)
  • Naim Haque Roger – bass (since 2003)
  • Ibrahim Ahmed Kamal - Guitar (since 1984)
  • Oni Hasan – Guitar (since 2007)
  • Shams Mansoor Ghani – keyboards and voice (since 1999)

Former[edit]

  • Sunjay – Vocals (1990–1999)
  • Babna Karim – Bass and Vocals (1988–1996)
  • Russel Ali – Keyboards & guitar (1990–1994)
  • Fuad Ibn Rabbi – Keyboards & guitar (1994–1999)
  • Khaled 'Bassbaba' Sumon – Bass & vocals (1996–99)
  • Iqbal Asif Jewel – Guitar & vocals (1996–99)
  • Balam – Vocals & Guitar (1999–2007)
  • Cézanne – Bass (2002–2003)
  • Sazzad Arifin – Guitars (2001–2007)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Warfaze and its reign of metal". The Daily Star (Bangladesh). Archived from the original on 28 March 2011. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "Warfaze: 29 Years and Still Going Strong"
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Warfaze Biography". banglamusic.com. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d Kamol, Ershad (13 April 2009). "In conversation with Warfaze". The Daily Star. Archived from the original on 16 June 2010. Retrieved 14 March 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Face to Face with Sumon". banglamusic.com. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  6. ^ "Balam 2 Bangla Music Album". banglamusic.com. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  7. ^ "Interview with Balam". banglamusic.com. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  8. ^ "Banglalink launches folk album Shomorpon today". The Daily Sun. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  9. ^ "Warfaze’s Shotto in Banglalink Music Station". AmaderGaan.com. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  10. ^ "Warfaze’s New Album 'Shotto'". AmaderGaan.com. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  11. ^ "Warfaze Official Facebook Page". Retrieved 18 February 2013. 
  12. ^ "Spotlight". The Daily Star (Bangladesh). Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  13. ^ "Kamal's facebook page". Facebook. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  14. ^ ""Onibarjo": De-Illumination’s inevitable journey". The Daily Star (Bangladesh). Retrieved 27 March 2013.