The recently released video of their song, ‘Monster he becomes’, beautifully portrays the feelings of a human who has left his path, but confidently knows of the fact that he still has it deep inside. Acronym-ed for ‘A Strange Monster’, ASM primarily sings of the life experiences and states of a human and the relationships that are usually abstract. Thematically written by the band, ‘Anubhav’ speaks about the bonding between a father and his son; likewise, ‘Bhram’ recites about an individual in a state of confusion. The band portrays these feelings in quite a spectacular mix of elegantly balanced music that isn’t so complex, whilst being not that simple, either. Incorporating the heaviest of heavy to the chilliest of soft elements, ASM doesn’t quite belong to a particular musical genre; in a way, this band is trying to come out with its own sound. Although the band could be best described as being closer to groove rock, the members admit they’ve been experimenting much and have only a vague idea where their music is heading towards from the perspective of their sound. But, whatever they come up with next surely will be something artistically outstanding. ASM is a band that gets better with time, with each show they perform; having seen the band from its early stages, that’s something I can say without doubt.
Fronted by Abhishek S. Mishra, a name coming out steadily in the music scene here, with involvements in other ventures like Leo Aries and Spirit X, to name two; the band has Simon Upreti on bass, Saiyed Shakya on guitar, and Nikesh Manandhar on drums, all very capable musicians in their respective fields. Picked carefully by Abhishek himself, the members have put on their musical parts to the songs written by him and given them the soul and sound of ASM. Their songs, as they explain, build up from a point of motivation. Be it an emotion or a verse, the head start gradually leads to something meaningful in terms of lyrics and sound upon exploration and improvisation. As a band, ASM doesn’t just jam and try to write songs, they plan everything. As the first one to do the head start, usually the singer himself comes out with the basic framework of the new song; the ideas are circulated to everyone. Within the time the band sits for their next jam session, everyone already has their individual parts sorted and planned out for the new material. Sometimes, even in just one jam session, like one of their songs, ‘The Eye of the Storm’, the new song is ready; if not, the arrangements are sorted out together.
For a while, ASM only wrote in Latin script and English language. Only serious followers of the band know that they’ve started writing in Nepali, as well, and that they did beautifully. I believe this band could be a household name here if they come out with more Nepali numbers, knowing their music is a perfectly balanced fit in respect to the level of aggression and mellowness they have with them. Throughout last year, they have come up with new songs, and numerous times they have had performed for themselves and for audience, have stolen shows, built their loyal fan base, and proved the very essence of the band. The band will be undertaking the tough job of executing their major and much needed actions and plans this year. The video for ‘Monster He Becomes’ has already been out recently, which is enjoying a fair amount of views at the moment and have been praised for the band’s effort by many.
On the schedule are a few new Nepali songs that should also come out; the band has already started working on it. Meanwhile, the band is also looking forward to a few tours outside the valley. Sticking together, the team is very alive and carrying forward with a passionate spirit to create something meaningful for them and the band. In a nutshell, the band’s music is something you can relate to, they are more of an experience, rather. ASM is all about exploration of self and what they can do together as a group. It would be right to say that ASM is a genre in itself.