My first metal bands were Metallica, Iron Maiden, Megadeth, Judas Priest etc. I literally still listen to them everyday. As I entered my teens, I became a bit curious of my own country's (Bangladesh) metal scene. I thought, there is just no way our local bands can match up-to the quality of the American, British heavy metal band. But turns out, I was wrong.
There has been actually a strong and passionate metal scene here since the late '80s. Young kids who dreamed idolizing big metal bands and wanted to revolutionize the music scenery here, which was filled with clinched and catchy pop songs. Those firsts bands were Warfaze, Rockstrata, Cryptic Fate.
Among those, Warfaze is the most successful and still the biggest metal band in Bangladesh.
WarfazeFounded by Ibrahim Ahmed Kamal (who is widely hailed as the best guitarist of Bangladesh), this heavy metal had a very successful self titled debut album in 1991 and continued to dominate the metal scene in the '90s. Their popularity went down a bit in the early 2000's but they made a huge comeback with "Pothchola." In this album, they re-recorded their old songs and re-introduced themselves to another generation. Their music is considered heavy metal with a slightly "Maiden" touch. They add rather an interesting touch with their keyboard and music in general. Their best known songs are "Boshe Achi" (trans: Sitting Here), "Hotasha" (trans: Depression), "Moharaj" (trans: The King) and more hits. They are like the "Black Sabbath of Bangladesh." Their recent album "Shotto" was by far the best selling album in that year, here in Bangladesh.
ArtcellThis progressive metal band was founded in the late '90s and probably the most popular band in Bangladesh. They broke new grounds in the to the metal genre and their musicianship is just insane. They were just an underground band when they released their debut album "Onno Shomoy" in 2002 (trans: In Another Time), it consisted mostly heavy metal album with an progressive touch. But their real breakthrough came with their 2nd album "Oniket Prantor" (trans: No Man's Land). The album was sold out in a couple of hours when it was released. It broke them to mainstream and this album is probably the best selling metal album of all time here in Bangladesh. Their best known songs are "Oniket Prantor," "Onno Shomoy," "Chilekotha Shepai," "Dhushor Shomoy" etc.
I gotta talk about the song "Oniket Prantor." This 16 minute song, simply is the greatest metal song here. It follows the "metal ballad" formula like "Stairway to Heaven."
AurthohinFounded by Sumon (affectionately called "bassbaba" (trans: Father of Bass) by fans. It has been one of the most consistent and versatile bands here in Bangladesh. Sumon's bass guitar playing just beyond awesomeness. He employs a slap-style bass technique, which creates an interesting twist in his music. There are songs are sometimes very very heavy, sometimes progressive, sometimes very simple. They are known to have create ballad songs as well. There well known songs are "Chaite Paro," "Guti From Hell," "Guti (The Finale)," "Oshomapto," "Odvut Sei Cheleti," "Shat Din."
The song "Shat Din" (trans: Seven Days) nearly clocks in over an half hour and is inspired by Rush's "2112." My personal favorite song of their is "Guti (The Finale)."
NemesisThey are music is more alternative than metal. But, still deserves a mention. Their blend of soft rock with heavy metal creates a great vibe. Not to mention their guitar solos... Their best knowns songs are "Obocheton," "New Day," "Gone," "Kobe," "Bir" etc.
There are more bands here, like Cryptic Fate, Powersurge, Black and more. There are more young bands as well who are evolving into great bands. It's rather exciting to be a part of something that's so good. But, sadly it doesn't have the international recognition.
At last, I would like to conclude my article with this advice "Don't just be stuck with the American/English metal bands." There are just so many bands around the world who are very underrated and are so marvelous. Like I was just blown away by this Australian progressive metal band Ne Obliviscaris and Japan's X Japan. There are so many bands in Europe and Middle-east too. If you'd watch the Sam Dunn's "Global Metal," you would know that metal is now becoming a part of globalization.
It's bigger than anything you can dream of. So it the best course of action for you, is to get on with ride and explore.