By Prasanta Phukon
Adroit shone in the local music industry after winning the Shillong Lajong Football Club’s theme song competition in 2012. There was no looking back for the band members after that. The melodic rock band went on to win several competitions in the state.
The four members — vocalist Finnally Hubert Kharbani, drummer Eric Sohtun, bassist Bashemphang L Mawlong and guitarist Dondor Lang Khyriem — regularly took part in musical events their respective schools. The 34-year-old vocalist said even at that young age they had decided to be musicians and it is what they are doing. The band has two albums to its credit. The first one, The Adroit, was released in 2007. Four years later, the four young musicians were ready with their second album, Forever Rock.
“We were so enthusiastic… we still cherish those moments. Forever Rock is basically about the essence of the band. The single has a punch of melodic rock with a blend of melodic power metal. The band has always had a kind of a trip down memory lane reviving classic rock ’n roll that will never die and legends are indeed immortal icons,” said 23-year-old Mawlong. Apart from melodic rock music, the band plays covers of Helloween, Mr Big, Rainbow, Fire House, White Lion, Deep Purple, Great White, YNT, Skid Row, Riot, Mass, Roxus and Guns ’n Roses, among others.
“We would listen to their songs in school. Then we had cassettes. We just love the way these songs were composed, the melody and the lyrics. This is the reason why we thought of performing covers too,” said 35-year-old Khyriem. “When we are on stage, we perform every song, be it an original or a cover, with equal sincerity. We want to give our friends and fans the best. If we get the chance to collaborate with any international band, it would be great for us but to single out any favourite will be difficult because there are lots,” he replied when asked about the band’s favourite artiste. Adroit takes inspiration from all the bands that they listen to and the members believe that if they did not choose music as career, “then only God knows where we would have been today”. According to the members, the best musician in their category of music genre is difficult to mention because there are a lot of great musicians with different skills and techniques. “But we believe in hard work and achieving perfection. When we started our journey as musicians, we faced many ups and downs but our sheer determination and hard work helped us beat every adversity on our way. We made two albums and in the next five years, we are hopeful that we will release more albums and do many shows,” said 27-year-old Sohtun, adding, “A young musician should just keep doing what he or she loves. Don’t lose hope easily and keep trying and above all keep practising.” Adroit, said Kharbani, means skilful. “The name was suggested by a former member. In 2000, when we started the band we were all students. We were searching for a name and each member was asked to suggest one. The former drummer, Benny Rangad, suggested the name Adroit and we all loved it instantly. So here we are,” he narrated the story behind the band’s name. The skilful musicians have lived up to the name. They were winners of the Amlarem (Jowai) Beat Contest 2007, the Flames of Rock Beat Contest held in Shillong and the Hero Honda Campus Rock Idol regional finals in 2007, among others. “We want all our fans and music lovers in Shillong to keep supporting us and we will also give our best and deliver good music,” said Mawlong.
Photo courtesy: Adroit