death metal, bombay style


SAHIL MAKHIJA, the band’s songwriter, guitarist, and chief growler, formed Demonic Resurrection at a time when extreme metal was unknown to the sub-continent. Albums by bands like Cradle of Filth and Cannibal Corpse had to be downloaded at a snail’s pace from dial-up chat rooms in the late ’90s and early ’00s. India’s exposure to metal and hard rock was limited to the mainstream acts showing on MTV, like Metallica and Guns N’ Roses. Makhija wanted to launch his own brand of metal, but DR was too weird for record labels here. So Makhija, who dropped out of college in 2002, started his own: Demonstealer Records, after the metal moniker he, then 19, had given himself and still uses today. While starting a record label is generally regarded as a very ambitious venture, in Makhija’s case it was entered into in a spirit of DIY, with the first edition of the band’s first album, Demonstealer, put down on Kodak Gold CDs that he purchased for Rs40 a piece. His mother helped him assemble the CD sleeves and casings so that he could peddle them at the Strawberry Fields festival held at Bangalore’s National Law School.

more from Michael Edison Hayden at The Caravan here.