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By The Telegraph Online
  • Published 28.02.08
The Avial album cover

If you know your Indian rock, chances are you’ve heard a good deal of Avial already. The fivesome that named themselves after a Malayali vegetable dish created a storm with their super-catchy single, Nadanada, and their debut eponymous album, released in late 2007 on Phat Fish Records. The band is also the toast of the live circuit, with its most recent gig being a rocking set at the three-day Eastwind Festival at Delhi.

Anandraj Paul (vocals), Tony John (vocals, turntable and synth), Rex Vijayan (guitar and synth), Naresh Kamath (bass) and Mithun Puthanveetil (drums) play what they call “alternative Malayali rock”. Avial’s earthy folk melodies, enveloped in a guts-out, ballsy rock blanket with some crisp playing and great production is definitely one of the most exciting sounds to emerge from these shores in the past 12 months. It is unique, it is funky (blame the turntable if you want to get up and jump) and these guys sing in their mother-tongue.

The “original Indian rock band” tag aside, as the band’s MySpace profile puts it, there’s a “good chance” that the global listener relates to Avial “simply because it’s musically sound”. Rock on, machas.

Arka Das