Sangharsha are a Hardcore band from New York with roots in Nepal. I’ve been a fan of ’em ever since a Nepali friend of mine made me hear their split record with Kathmandu based HC goons Jugaa. They’ve been a regular in my playlist ever since, and interviewing them was one of the first things on my mind when I started this blog/zine. I managed to interview Sangharsha’s guitarist and founder Kshitiz Moktan and talked to him about the past, present and future of his band.
Hey Kshitiz. How’s everything at your end?
Enjoying Life and Fatherhood, dawn of a new era!
Despite being around for a few years, Sangharsha remains somewhat of an enigmatic entity. Can you give us a brief summary concerning the history of the band?
One night in the hot summer weather in 2004 in Alabama, a vision struck to me, what if four meteorites would stuck together hit the earth, what would happen, this is when the vision started to take a reality.
The sound has evolved quite a bit since the band’s nascent days. The first demo was no-frills hardcore but you’ve flirted with heavier, sludgier, doomier sounds since then. With this in mind, what sort sounds do you see Sangharsha exploring in the future?
Beautiful, minimalistic but powerful and spiritual songs of love and realization.
Sangharsha’s lyrics were expressed purely in the Nepali language in the past. You’ve started to incorporate English songs lately, however. What inspired this shift?
So that we can harness and fine tune some of our accentuated, articulated and grammatically perfect Eng-Lish!
You recently put out the Ghalazat (Urdu for Filth) compilation with a bunch of rad hardcore, grind and death metal bands from Nepal and Pakistan. What was the purpose behind the compilation, and when can we expect a sequel to it?
Ghalazat was envisioned as a love for humanity with a ray of hope of music to celebrate that we together can co-exist in this world full of extra terrestrial beings. Expect Ghalazat II to be back in 2014 with more songs and bands supporting our vision.
Despite making a lot of noise, you lads haven’t been too active on the live front, though.
We like to write and create history rather than be on the streets preaching about something.
Right, now let’s talk about your pre-Sangharsha musical endeavors. You and Vishal of Jugaa were in Inside 2 Stoopid Triangles, a really rad Punk Rock band from Kathmandu apparently.
Four wannabes trying to be hipsters back in those days playing hip punk music which people thought was anti-everything which was quite the opposite when we started it and ended it.
Not many people can claim being in kickass hardcore and punk bands in two different countries. What’s the biggest difference you noticed in the scene in Kathmandu and the scene in New York?
Never been a part of a scene, so no comments please.
You’re recording your next record in Kurt Ballou’s (Converge) studio. How’d that come across and when can we expect the new stuff?
Well Kurt does a super job of bringing out a Band’s natural sound to a record, since we are going to record songs that are emotional and full of love and realization, it was a natural choice.
What’s on your playlist these days?
Listening to a lot of MattyB, that’s all in my list, go check out MattyB in youtube, it’s awesome.
Thanks for taking the time to talk to us! Any parting words?
Keep the Faith (George Michael)
– Hassan Dozakhi