''Our next album will decide the sound of Avial''

When you think Alternative Malayalam Rock, Avial comes to the mind in a flash. The band from Kerala broke into the Indian Rock scene with the self-titled studio album in 2008, and went on to win several awards on the national stage, building up a huge fan following along the way. But the band has been witnessing several changes ever since their lead vocalist left the outfit. However, things seem to be looking good, as the four-piece band gear to perform in Mumbai on May 22 and later, in Singapore on May 25.

(From left to right) The members of Avial includes Binny Isaac (bass), Tony John(vocals), Rex Vijayan (guitars and synth) and Mithun Puthanveetil (drums)

What’s the secret behind Avial sustaining itself as a leading Alternative Malayalam Rock band?
It’s music. People like our songs. When we started, we were the only Malayali Rock band who didn’t sing in English, and we used original lyrics. Fans haven’t changed much since then - people still want the originality. Besides, we like what we do. It’s the love of music that keeps us going.

Avial’s line-up has undergone several changes since your first album. There’s talk that Avial has lost its touch. How difficult has it been to work as a band while ensuring the sound stays true to what brought Avial into limelight?
A lot has changed since the release of our first single Nada Nada. People have moved out of the band. It has been challenging since we lost our main vocal singer, Anand Raj Benjamin Paul. There was lot of effort put in that voice and the album. But we have been working hard, and our current line-up is
very versatile.

It’s been five years since Avial released a new album or a new track. Can we expect something new soon?
We are working on our new album. It should be out either by the end of 2013 or in the first half of next year. It’s very different from our first album, or anything we have ever produced - in terms of sound, style and presentation. Currently, the group is a mix of different styles, and that will be very clearly visible in the album. Our next alum will decide the sound of Avial.

You always perform live in India. What it is about live shows that you like the most?
It is more challenging to perform in front of crowds. It’s tough, but it’s fun. Besides, Rock is always live in Kerala. Unfortunately, these days, not many shows happen in Kerala, so, we perform mostly outside, travelling to different cities.

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