Today, I've got an interview with Indian Christian hardcore metal band Rueban! This is one of the few where the bands have not been in the same country with. I've a done an interview with a South African band (Forfeit Thee Untrue), a Swedish band (Pantokrator) and now an Indian band! I've got an interview with a band that was originally from Finland. Give ya a little teaser. Alright here's the interview:
TBD: Who am I speaking to? (For the readers)
Rueban: Hi Mason, you are speaking to Rueban Issac; the Vocalist, Abishek Allapanda; the Rhythm Guitarist and Emmanuel Ojo; the Lead Guitarist of the band; “Rueban.” Thank you so much for doing this interview with us.
TBD: Could you give a quick background on the band?
Rueban: Rueban is a metal band that brings a blend of hardcore punk and alternative metal, with lyrics that focus on sharing the message of finding Hope, Strength and Salvation. Rueban comprises of Rueban Issac on Vocals, Abishek Allapanda on Guitars, Emmanuel Ojo on Guitars, Shawn Vivian on Guitars, Stephen Rahul on Bass and Bobbin Jaydev on Drums. Rueban strives to spread the ethics of hardcore; PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) with the inspirational teachings of Jesus Christ and further breathe fresh music into a generic scene, pushing both music and lyrics to the fullest potential.
TBD: I read an interview on a blog spot site saying that the band started as a solo project of Rueban Isaac. And the band turned into a six-piece band. I love it! You go from one to six guys. The three guitarist thing is something that I totally love! It reminds me of Haste the Day, A Thousand Times Repent, and xDEATHSTARx. My question here is, how did you guys go from one to six?
Rueban Issac: I started Rueban primarily as a solo project when I had the time off from my previous bands Onslaught and In Heavens Eyes. Following the breakup of In Heavens Eyes and Onslaught going into hiatus, I decided to make my solo project into a full-fledged band. I connected with the members purely through Facebook, primarily from posting ads in groups and through referrals from friends. Since, there was online identity already present for the name; “Rueban” that was built over the years, we decided to stick to it and continue. I am grateful to my band mates for allowing the name of the band to remain, without coming up with something new and starting from scratch.
Abishek Allapanda: Rueban posted an ad on a Facebook group called Musicians in Hyderabad, and the rest of us responded.
TBD: Who are your guys influences?
Rueban Issac: Terror, Hatebreed, Madball and Six Feet Deep.
Abishek Allapanda: Nevermore and System of a Down.
Emmanuel Ojo: My guitar playing is heavily influenced by Slash and Tremonti. These days, more towards Tremonti and his blend of Heavy riffs and soulful melodies.
TBD: I found your guys Bandcamp. Do you have other releases? Maybe an upcoming release?
Rueban Issac: Rueban as a solo effort released 2 albums that include; Stronger Than Ever and Indestructible. Indestructible is available on bandcamp as a digital download whereas our latest album; Stronger Than Ever is available as a digital package on itunes, amazonmp3 and spotify. For non-itunes users (India only), it is available on www.oklisten.com/rueban
As a band, we are currently working on a new album. We intend on hitting the studio late November to record our new material.
Abishek Allapanda: We’re working on 8-10 track album.
TBD: Are there plans for it to come out on a label?
Rueban Issac: Yes, we intend on bringing the new album out via the support of a label. We intend on taking a strategic decision with regards to the choice of label for the release of the new album.
TBD: Are there any other Christian heavy bands in your area? Final Surrender (Rottweiler Records) is from India are you guys friends with them?
Rueban Issac: There are quite a few Christian metal bands in India that include; Whitenoiz, Final Surrender, Transitpoint and D’Whetstone. Most of the bands find it difficult to keep the music going, due to lack of a proper platform or support system.
We are familiar with Final Surrender and have connected with the boys via facebook, but, we have never had the opportunity to play live alongside them (or) share a bill together.
TBD: How would you guys describe your style?
Rueban Issac: Straight up Christian Hardcore Metal.
Abishek Allapanda: Exploring the fringes of hardcore Christian metal.
Emmanuel Ojo: Now that we have 6 members in the band, the ideas we generate tend to vary according to the personality of the band members who brings the idea. But predominantly, we find ourselves in the avenue of heavy riffs with more emphasis on melody and groove.
TBD: What artists/bands have you been listening to lately?
Rueban Issac: Off late, I have been listening to more alternative metal and a few hardcore bands. Some of them include; Non-point, staind (more of dysfunction, break the cycle and their self titled album), freeze the atlantic, helmet, P.O.D and snapcase.
Abishek Allapanda: Witchrider and Born of Osiris.
Emmanuel Ojo: It's been Mastodon and Gojira on the heavy side. I have also been listening to Lecrae and Lupe Fiasco and some old school rap. I know it's odd, but you like what you like.
TBD: I know that over there in India, there is a lot of persecution for being a Christian. Are you guys persecuted?
Rueban Issac: I would not say we are being persecuted. For a matter of fact, the place where we come from is great for accepting Christians. I always believe, never to take things too far. It’s always the religious fundamentalist nutjobs who take things to extremes, which land them in trouble. I do not approve of religious extremism. I believe in God and the principles of being a Christian through the teachings of Christ.
Emmanuel Ojo: We as a band have not faced any direct challenge yet. But there are a lot of problems that are raised against the church in India. Please do remember us in your prayers.
TBD: Is there anything else you would like to say?
A. Rueban Issac: When life throws you a beatdown, always remember, to pick yourself up and rise above it all. We are all born strong. Hardcore forever.
Abishek Allapanda: Hardcore still lives.
Emmanuel Ojo: Dream Big and take that step of Faith to achieve it. You'll never know what's around the bend, if you never left your driveway. God bless you.
That was Rueban! Go give those guys some love! The links to their sites are below, until next time, stay metal!
The Bearded Dragon