Nov 12

Diwali in Bangalore – A pictorial

Just a few shots I took on the night of Diwali outside the apartment complex I stay at. All the residents had gathered at the public park in front to burst firecrackers.

Public park Diwali celebrations Bangalore

Quite a few families had already begun with the noise

Mickey Mouse firework Diwali

Mickey doing his magic

Arkere Mico layout Diwali celebrations

Nithin Anand lighting firework

My brother (in the back) and his friend lighting a firework

Shadow firecracker on ground Diwali India

Sparkler stick closeup Diwali celebrations

Sparklers are of course, a perennial favourite. I hate the bombs – mostly because I can’t stand the noise. Sadly, with fireworks costing as much as they do come festive season, I can see why Diwali gets louder and louder each year.

Kid holding sparkler stick Diwali Bangalore

TV Tower firework Bangalore India

The names they come up with for fireworks these days. This one’s called ‘TV Tower’.

Red firework Bengaluru India

Surprisingly this one isn’t called ‘S.O.S’

Fountain fireworks Diwali in Bangalore India

Foreigners playing with fireworks Diwali Bangalore

Even visitors couldn’t resist joining in on the festivities

Fountain firework Diwali BangaloreMan walking fireworks Diwali Bengaluru IndiaSparkler fireworks spinning Deepawali India

Colourful fireworks bursting in the sky

Whereas up in the sky…

Fireworks bursting Diwali Bangalore IndiaFireworks Diwali night Bangalore IndiaFireworks night sky Diwali Bangalore

Yellow firework Diwali Bangalore

I got tired of the noise and returned home

L & T South City apartments Diwali lightsHope everyone celebrating had a prosperous, and more importantly, a safe Diwali this year!

Nov 12

IndiBlogger Meet in Bangalore, hosted by Nokia

Date: November 11th, 2012

Considering I have been a member of IndiBlogger since 2010, I had yet to attend one of the many blogger meetups the popular forum hosts in cities across India (and occasionally abroad). This being an event sponsored by Nokia and hosted by one of my favourite NDTV anchors Rajiv Makhni and a Michelin-starred chef by the name of Vikas Khanna, I just couldn’t make excuses this time around.

A ‘gadget guru’ and a celebrity chef thrown together summed up what Nokia India’s Apptasting theme was all about. Given Nokia and Microsoft’s combined efforts to popularize the Windows Phone OS, I had a hunch what was in store. But I’ll be honest, part of the reason I immediately signed up for the event was in the hopes Nokia would have their Lumia phones on display – especially the much anticipated Lumia 920.

You see, I’m at the stage where I have to upgrade from my Nokia E72 – a 2009 smartphone, but has since been ‘outsmarted’ by the many touch-based devices that have now become the norm for mobile phones these days. I’m no fanboy but important to me were a stable ecosystem with a healthy dose of good quality apps, a good screen and an excellent in-built camera. The Samsung Galaxy S3 is tempting but Android is way too open a platform for me, Nokia’s Lumia 920 blew me away with its camera features, and seeing what the complete package of what the iPhone 5 offers… I’m tempted to go for it. Sadly, I need both my kidneys, which is why I’m open to learning more about the alternatives.

Anyway… after an epic (and tiring) Saturday night, I made my way to ITC Gardenia hotel which was to be the venue for tonight’s IndiBlogger meet.

ITC Gardenia hotel Bangalore

The 5-star ITC Gardenia on Vittal Mallya Road

ITC Gardenia hotel lobby

Quite a posh setting for a bunch of bloggers! :)

ITC Gardenia Mysore hall

We were directed upstairs to the Mysore Hall

Continue reading “IndiBlogger Meet in Bangalore, hosted by Nokia” »

Nov 12

Above & Beyond Live in Bangalore: Photos and videos from TATW 450

Date: November 10th, 2012

Finally! The last time Above & Beyond played in Bangalore, I missed it. I hoped they would return but I never expected my favorite trance outfit to return like this. I couldn’t believe Submerge managed to snag an epic event like this and bring the group down to Bangalore for it! Trance Around the World, my favourite trance podcast, episode 450 – which they announced at the end of episode 449 would be their last – was going to be transmitted live from Bangalore!

Six hours of amazing trance with other Anjunabeats artists such as Jody Wisternoff, Andrew Bayer, Norin & Rad, Mat Zo, and finally Above & Beyond taking the stage for a two-hour set. Since I knew I couldn’t dance for six hours straight, I only made it to the venue at around 5:30pm just as Andrew Bayer was on stage.

Andrew Bayer Tatw 450 Bangalore India

The stage setup, the sound, the impressive venue… it was all really well put together

Andrew Bayer Tatw 450 Bangalore

I really enjoyed Andrew Bayer’s set — pure trance at it’s finest

Norin and Rad TATW450 Bangalore India

Next up was American duo Norin & Rad

Norin & Rad Tatw450 Bangalore live

Didn’t dance a lot to their set, although they were great in getting the crowd pumped up

Norin Rad Tatw450 Bangalore concert

A good hour-long set none the less

Submerge says dance bucket Bangalore

Submerge says dance, and dance we did!

Above & Beyond TATW 450 live in Bangalore

I still couldn’t believe after all this time I waited to see Above & Beyond in concert, it would be for a live recording of the final episode of the trance podcast I’ve been listening to since 2006!

Mat Zo TATW 450 live in Bangalore

Mat Zo, the final ‘warm-up’ act took to the stage for his hour-long set

Mat Zo TATW 450 Bangalore

His set was much better!

Crowd Tatw450 Above & Beyond Bangalore concert

They had streams of colourful cloth spreading through the crowds. It was symbolic for it is the graphic that represents Group Therapy Radio – Above & Beyond’s new radio show

Above and Beyond stage group therapy

As the clock struck 8pm, it was now time for the main act. The crowd went wild as three men took to the stage.

Paavo Jono Tony Tatw 450 Bangalore India

(L-R) Paavo, Jono and Tony – or better known as the legendary Above & Beyond! I won’t mention their DJ Mag ranking… mostly because I don’t give a shit how high they rank!

Above & Beyond Tatw 450 Hello Bangalore

Needless to say all of us were going bonkers seeing all three of them on stage together (Usually two of them go on tour while one stays back in the studio)

Above & Beyond group therapy Bangalore concert

The end of Trance Around the World and the beginning of Group Therapy Radio episode 001

Above & Beyond stage Bangalore Tatw 450

The played classics from like “Liquid Love” and even some world-exclusive first listens. If it weren’t for ‘Tri-State,’ I wouldn’t have heard of Above & Beyond.

Above & Beyond live Bangalore India

But of course, there’s always that one moron who keeps shouting for “Sun and Moon” right from the start. Ugh. (They played it towards the end of course)

Above & Beyond confetti concert India

Epic six-hour long live broadcast ended with an epic shower of confetti!

Paavo hugging Tony end of TATW 450

Paavo and Tony seemed pleased

Above and Beyond members Bangalore concert

So were we

Above & Beyond Group Therapy Bangalore India

I began to leave the venue as they closed out with “Good For Me” (from ‘Tri-State again). I was kinda disappointed they didn’t play “Good Day” as it was the one song I was so looking forward to singing as loud as I could.

Above & Beyond Group Therapy radio Bangalore

But this being a ‘good night,’ play “Good Day” they did. Although it was the vocal mix. Still, it didn’t stop I or anyone else from singing along.

Jaymahal palace concert venue Bangalore

Nikhil Chinapa, who is one of the men behind Submerge, then took to the stage to thank his home crowd for an amazing night

This year marked the 10th anniversary of Submerge, an institution that started out as a platform for Indian DJs back in 2002 and which has since grown into a tour de force in the promotion of electronic dance music in India. You’ve really got to hand it to them. Even Nikhil Chinapa said he never expected they would get this far, but all the applause he got from the crowd was well deserved. Sunburn Festival, all the international DJs they bring to India, and the Submerge nights… Nikhil has done EDM in India a world of good!

As for videos from the night, here are a bunch of clips recorded on the Samsung Galaxy SII (also used for all the above photos). You might want to turn down the speakers as I was close to the stage, and so there’s a lot “brrrr brrr”. Also, if you’re epileptic, you have been warned!

You can listen to TATW 450/Group Therapy 001 in full here.

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