Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 7th 2015 Contents Faraz Abdool on bass.
June 7, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
If you ve never heard of Spectral Vibes, it is prob-
ably because this is the first time the band is playing
together after a six-year hiatus from music. They
started in 2004 with their first gig at a Naparima
Boys College graduation ceremony and then played
the local rock circuit, building up a following until
2009 when they parted ways.
"Being in a band like this you don t really get
income from it," said vocalist Yadav "Cutter" Mohip.
"So we had to pull up our big people pants and
go get jobs."
Mohip is a teacher, while his brother, guitarist
Sharad Mohip, is a medical doctor, Faraz Abdool on
bass is a wildlife photographer and drummer Khalid
Pahalwan works in the law fraternity.
"We were always friends and we knew that one
day we would start back jamming and that happened
late last year."
The catalyst that brought the band back together
seemed to be fate, and a consequence of each band
member being in the right place at the right time.
"Everyone had the time to play again. Spectral is
a band that, even though it s the four of us, if there
is one missing, there is no Spectral Vibes," added
They describe their sound as progressive rock with
overtones (and undertones) of a wide range of musical
styles and genres. They invite anyone who can swing
by a gig to take in their unique style.
The band has public performance dates listed on
their social media page for June as part of their Obeah
Pahalwan, known for his eclectic drumming style
of multi-time signature rhythms, admitted that while
he, like all the members of the band, only has a "sur-
vival level" literacy in music, he possesses a deep
understanding of music by ear.
"It s a lot of the riffing is based on rhythmic stuff,
like African drumming, even some soca... that s why
our stuff takes that pattern because we re from T&T."
All the band members agreed that limited music
literacy has never restricted their musical creativity.
"We were first influenced by rock music straight
from the 60s era," explained guitarist Sharad Mohip.
"Straight from the Beatles to probably even heavy
metal of today. So we had a lot of influences from
all the subgenres. That s why we call ourselves Spec-
tral , because we are part of the spectrum of so many
The Mohip brothers write most of the music, but
the music melody and chord structure is usually
written in collaboration with all band members.
According to Cutter, they are mostly "reactionary
"It started off with just me. I ve been writing since
I was very young," he said.
"As the band progressed everybody got more mature
in their craft to put things toward the song writing,
and now we write songs where Sharad brings the
music and I bring the melody. Then we have songs
where Khalid comes up with a drum beat first and
Faraz always brings in an element with his bass
playing that we never heard before."
While the band has received some airplay support
from Mike Ross of 95.1FM, they do not believe that
having their music played more frequently on radio
or "going mainstream" is very important at this stage.
As such, Spectral Vibes has remained largely appre-
ciated by smaller, very loyal audiences. The focus of
the band seems to be a preference to speak passion-
ately about their music and the possibilities of there
they can go in developing their sound.
"Utishta was the first song where we actually saw
Sharad bring a body of music that was totally mind-
blowing, and the progressive nature of that song is
such that it really was a crowning moment in song
writing. That s the one song, when we play it, it
takes us to another place."
Written in 2007, the chorus lyric includes the
words, "Complacence in silence leads to disturbance."
"I think Utishta came at a point where we were
coming of age," added Abdool. The band describes
their lyrics as heavily internal and reading like inner
dialogue---a place few local artistes dare to explore,
in their opinion. They doubt they will ever write a
"It s more introspective like strife, life, struggle..."
After the interview last weekend, the band per-
formed a one-hour set at the ten-month concert
series On The Road to SKYY Rock Festival, staged
by Schmitt Entertainment, pouring out their sound
and hearts to the small but enthusiastic crowd at D
Vibes at Sky Lounge in San Fernando.
Spectral Vibes launches
OBEAH TOUR 2015
Yadav "Cutter" Mohip on vocals.
Khalid Anderson Pahalwan on drums.
Spectral Vibes performing at the event On The Road to SKYY Rock Festival, at D
Vibes at Sky Lounge in San Fernando, May 29. Sharad Mohip on lead guitar.
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