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If you’ve never heard Monks of Mellonwah, it's hard to put them in any one boxed up genre of music--listen to "Downfall", you might think alternative rock; but listen to "I Belong to You", you might hear the hints of soul in the lead singer's voice.
The up-and-coming quartet from Sydney, Australia is comprised of lead vocalist Vikram Kaushik, Joe de la Hoyde with backing vocals and on guitar, John de la Hoyde on bass, and Josh Baissari on drums.
Their first EP, "Stars Are Out” was released in 2010, but it was their second EP “Neurogenesis”, released in 2012, that gained them international radio play and a tour in Australia and in the United States.
Their third EP “Sky and The Dark Night”, released earlier this year, seemed to be the right transition for the band that led to them being signed with A&R Worldwide.
The band decided to release its debut full-length CD “Turn The People” in three volumes: “Ghost Stories”, released in late June; “Afraid To Die”, due out in October; and volume three is due out soon after.
The latest EP, “Afraid To Die”, is made up of four tracks, the lead “Afraid To Die”, “Downfall”, “Alive For A Minute”, and “I Belong to You”. There’s something really special about the title track “Afraid To Die” that’s almost bigger than life, from the strong vocals to the guitar and drum build ups.
“Downfall” is great for two reasons: it’s a strong alternative/indie rock track, and because the track was produced by Grammy-winning Keith Olsen, who has worked with the likes of Fleetwood Mac, Ozzy Osbourne and Santana. “Alive For A Minute” and “I Belong To You” are both soft, melodic records that greatly showcase Kaushik’s voice.
The group won ‘Best International Act’ at the LA Music Awards and ‘Best Indie Rock Band’ at AIM Awards in 2012 and has played Singapore's Music Matters Festival. Currently, they are planning another tour for the United States and Australia.
They cite Led Zeppelin, Muse, Pink Floyd and Red Hot Chili Peppers as musical influences, and if you listen to them long enough, their sound can even take to the same space that Incubus and the Black Keys does.
Their love for classic rock is evident in their song styles, but they have the potential for a great pop-rock career.
Listen to the “Afraid To Die” EP here: monksofmellonwah.bandcamp.com
Image courtesy of Monks of Mellonwah