19 April, 2014: Besides housing bars, pubs, designer studios and mall – the erstwhile cotton mills of Mumbai have found another calling. As a music venue. Richardson & Cruddas Mill Compound, Byculla hosted it’s first Indian indie gig last week, The Road To Converse Rubber Tracks in India featuring performances by Pangea, The Superfuzz and Zero.
The gig was in part a competition by Converse to promote a band through a recording deal with the company’s own recording studio, and in part the venue’s inaugural gig with three headliners. For the competition bit of the gig, the five bands that took part included Bengaluru’s post rock act Space Behind The Yellow Room, Kolkata’s Bollywood kitsch pop band, The Ganesh Talkies, New Delhi indie pop act Frisky Pints, Chennai’s electro rock act The F16’s and Mumbai’s Spud In The Box. The F16’s from Chennai were the band to win the competition leg of the gig, and besides a very awesome looking trophy, the band also gets to record an album at The Converse Rubber Tracks Studio in Brooklyn, New York.
Pangea were the first headliners for the night. The prog metal outfit started their set off with a bang, even though they faced slight technical issues in the beginning. The audience was treated to some technically insane music, and it did not take more than five minutes for a massive mosh pit to form, a rarity even by Pangea’s standards. New Delhi’s punk three-piece act The Superfuzz were the next band on the line up, and the act played a set complete with constant ramblings and street smart vocals. What was interesting to hear was the use of djent riffs in their music.
Mumbai’s rock icons Zero were the main headliners for the evening, and it was phenomenal to see how the entire venue filled up during their set. A band that has been going through the motions of disbanding and forming again from time to time, Zero’s set was nothing short of a shot of nostalgia veiled in the awesomeness of good acoustics, light and a general feel good factor. The band played their all time hits including Christmas In July, Not My Kind Of Girl, and a cover of Harry Belafonte’s Banana Boat Song. No surprise then that the venue resonated with unabashed cheers when the bass line for PSP 12 began, and the mosh pit that followed was absolute pandemonium.
For a venue that could hold 2000 people, the place was packed to the hilt, and all of that in a structure that is 156 years.
Pictures – Sushant Sawant Photography/PopSplat.in
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