The music industry, a long fiefdom of record labels and distributors, was rescued by podcasts, to ensure that a good listener base built up. Now, an Indian podcast that has featured metal music from the Indian subcontinent, is taking it forward to an international level.
The latest episode of the Flaming Skull podcast, titled, The United Metal Nations, released online on September 26, and has already been downloaded more than 300 times. The response to the episode has been overwhelming, with listeners from South America and Finland writing in with their best wishes.
The podcast, available at www.tfspodcast.blogspot.com, first went on air in July 2009, and has released six episodes ever since. The primary aim is to bring out hidden talent from the extreme metal genre of music from around the world.
The United Metal Nations has one song each by Communal Grave from Karachi, Pakistan; Funeral In Heaven from Colombo, Sri Lanka; and Chromatic Massacre from Dhaka, Bangladesh. Two other artistes featured are De Profundis from the United Kingdom and Eccentric Pendulum from Bangalore.
Religion of metal Malcolm Soans, one of the seven co-founders of the podcast, says that international bands were on the agenda since the inception of the project. “None of the musicians give a d*** about the religious and cultural dissimilarities. We stand united under one religion — metal,” Soans emphatically declares.
The members of the podcast ran searches on networking sites to find metal acts from the subcontinent. Getting in touch with them was a breeze, but signing them on proved an ordeal. “It isn’t easy for musicians to give away their tracks for free listening. They took some time to go through the website and reverted to us in a few weeks,” Soans says.
Extreme metal, as it were, has a massive listener base in all these countries but hasn’t yet become as popular as in the West. This is reason neither side had to pay money to put the episode together, except for the costs incurred to mix and edit. Although the bands share the same influences, each has evolved a distinct sound of its own. And this diversity is what the podcast aims at capturing.
The podcast has now also begun a distribution unit where listeners get to place orders for albums cut by lesser known bands.
Podcasts are essentially like radio shows that you can download off the Internet, or stream online. They’re released in episodes and can also have videos in them. Some popular Indian podcasts are:
1. www.iup.mypodcast.com — The Indian Underground podcast
2. www.podbharti.com — The Podbharti Hindi podcast
3. www.podmasti.com — A podcast on Hindi cinema
4. www.mypodcast.com — Another podcast on Indian rock music
5. If you’ve installed iTunes on your computer, you have access to a host of free podcasts