Three-time Grammy nominated American metal band, Queensrÿche, will be performing in India for the first time at the ShiRock Festival in Ukhrul district of Manipur.
Queensrÿche will be joined by fellow American band, Steelheart in their Indian debut at Bakshi ground of Ukhrul district headquarters during the rock festival due to be held from April 24 to April 28. Ukhrul district is situated in the Northeast direction of Manipur, about 84 kilometres from Imphal.
Many, particularly the Ukhrulites, are excited about the international event taking place at their hometown and for some it is like a dream come true. Theithei Luithui, contemporary folk singer of the district said she is so excited to hear that “Steelheart and Queensrÿche” are performing in Ukhrul. “I grew up listening to classic and progressive rock. I am gonna rock away to glory. Yeah!” she exclaimed. She is one of the local folk artistes who will also perform during the music festival.
Formed in 1982 in Bellevue, Washington, Queensryche sold over 20 million albums worldwide, and 6 million in United State alone. The band received worldwide acclaim after they released their album Operation: Mindcrime in 1988, considered the greatest metal concept album of all time.
According to a reliable source, Eddie Jackson, Michael Wilton, Casey Jack, Anthony Bander and Parker Scott comprised the lined up for the April 28 Ukhrul gig, on closing day of the music festival. The same sources also informed that the band would be performing for about 80 minutes.
Steelheart, another mega feature of the ShiRock 2018 will open the festival on April 24. Although the band lineup is yet to be released, it is confirmed that the frontman Miljenko Matijevic will be leading his band.
He released a video on Instagram announcing their April 24 gig in Ukhrul. “Hello everybody out there of beautiful India my name is Miljenko Matijevic, I am the voice of Steelheart. I am happy to say that we will be in India for the first time ever at the ShiRock festival. Looking forward to seeing you all and singing to you all. Rock and Roll,” he said.
Tenno Pheiray, a rock lover said, “This will be a once in a lifetime opportunity for many of us. An international rock band performing for the first time in our hometown is dope,” he quipped.
ShiRock is an international rock festival of Manipur which is a part of the Shirui Lily Festival organised by the Tourism Department of Manipur. The rock festival is ticket-free to promote the conservation of the endangered state flower Shirui Lily and to promote young talented artistes, which will, in turn, promote eco-tourism in Manipur. After the success of the last edition of ShiRock 2017, the organizers expect a crowd of over 40,000 per day.
Shirui Lily is the state flower exclusively found at the peak of Shirui hills in Ukhrul. Yuimi Vashum, blogger and freelance writer said, “Shirui Lily Festival is definitely putting Ukhrul on the global map, particularly with ShiRock 2018 bringing home Steelheart and Queensrÿche for the first time to India.”
The major attraction of the ShiRock Band Competition is the battle of the bands from the entire Northeast regions for the ShiRock 2018 title worth Rs 10 lakh. “Perhaps, this is the first of many steps to bring our local rock bands into the global arena, and for the world to finally realize that we are serious about music,” he said.
The winners of the competition will open for Queensrÿche on April 28. (Courtesy: IE)