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Centigradz : A Unique Unity of Euphoria

Centigradz : A Unique Unity of Euphoria

Centigradz : A Unique Unity of Euphoria
Forming a music band can be an easy thing to do, but continuing it maintaining a good standard? Now that’s hard! Large number of bands which slowly faded away after their few days’ fame proves that very well. That is where Centigradz silhouettes high with a style that’s unique for them among many of the bands today in Sri Lanka. Amila ,Ishan,Isuru, Thilina and Thusith together forms this vibrant and innovative band. We at Xtream Youth got the privilege to meet these wonderful people for an interview while their hot new release “Hadaganna Me hitha” is streaming still!

What’s new with you guys these days?
These days we are working on our 3rd album. This must be the very first time you guys get to hear this. We are working on a new concept. Sri Lanka has seen many concerts, both local and internationally known artists performing. But don’t you guys see that there’s something missing? Some link missing, the energy level and the urge we Sri Lankans used to have. There’s some boringness coming in. We are going to change that. We are working with few leading artists in Sri Lanka to bring a whole new level of performing arts in Sri Lanka. I know it’s easier said than done, but things are looking promising at the moment.
Talking about Centigradz of cause, we got lots of shows confirmed. As a matter of fact we have set a new ground record or rather a band record for most number of shows ever in our performing career. For the last seven years. So, good times!!!

Let’s talk about the beginning of Centigradz. How did you guys form this band and how you came up with this name?
If I tell you something like this, would you ever believe it? We never dreamed that we will ever come into this position. Getting this much love you know. Sometimes the audience is even louder than us! We have made lots of mistakes in the beginning. Even now we make mistakes sometimes. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. You are bound to make mistakes. If you never make mistakes you are not going to learn anything. But you got to rectify the mistake and you got to understand that you have done a mistake. Then only you are going to be better. There’ll always be a person who stands up and points your mistakes you did in the past. Those are the things that made us. That’s how the game is.

We started back in our school days. St.John’s College. We were kind of known to the school community back in the years. Then we got some very good feedbacks from the audiences. I can recall that we got invited from some of fellow schools to come and perform. Now, how cool is that! Those were the times; I mean we felt that we belong here, that why we can’t do something distinctive, something that they have no seen back then. Then out came some tracks. It was very tough to get air play back in those days. Getting air play was like a dream coming true. Now it’s really easy. But you have to feel that hardness you know. Then only you try to do new things. There should be made a solid foundation.

Coming back to the question, we started in our O/L days, we performed covers of cause we didn’t have any originals. Did a lot of mistakes. Learned out of the mistakes we made. Initially, our very first foundation stone was laden back in 1998, but forks got to know us once we got air play for a track titled “Tradition”. It was the first track that we got air played for. It was played in Sun fm with all the international tracks. Then out came “Dark Angel” and it was like wild fire. Then started the mayhem or the craziness and all these things. That’s how we got here.

The name Centigradz of cause, it’s the same name we started with. We were doing western music back in those days and that market was different. And when we started performing; people began to ask what our name is. So we got together and did a brain storming session. Out came the names, ASC, Aurora, Northern Lights and some tongue twisting names like Farenhide, Celsius and Centipedes and all that. Then came the name Centigrade and I said what about Centigradz with a Z after the D, it sounds cool and we have a name. That’s how the name came into the being.

Centigradz : A Unique Unity of Euphoria What if I ask you about the hardest thing about being a band?
Well, a lot of things. It’s very hard. Even you do have the prefect set of friends, it kind of like get stuffed sometimes. It’s not just the friends you know. It’s the families of friends and friends of friends. The society and how we handle the pressure. So likewise there are lots of things. It’s very important as a band to know or rather to sense what the other person is up to. You have to be with the world and the society and how the things change. Here if you can’t understand what the other person is doing you should ask. We can’t jump into our own conclusions. A good communication and transparency should be there. When it comes to brotherhood it’s a total different story. And of cause the financial back ground. Because it’s not easy at all if you don’t manage your things well. So basically being a band is a touch more difficult than going solo.

What it’s really like to be a professional in this field? What are the things that one should know about it?
If you want to be a professional in this field, you have to know what you are doing and you have to get your basics correct. Now it’s of cause competitive. It’s tougher than the days we kicked in. But the exposure is so much and you can be heard. If you form a band today you can be known tomorrow. But in a week’s time, people will forget you. That’s how it is now. That’s how quick the society is changing and the new trends are coming in so you really have to work hard.

What’s the best achievement you guys have had so far?
It’s the award we won in Penang Malaysia. The title was “The Excellent New Singer” . We competed with 40 countries in all around Asia pacific region. We were kind of cool and we sounded quite good. And we won the award of excellence. It was like a learning session, sort of a mile stone for us. When only you go out there then only you get to know how artists perform on the stage, how well the get managed by their management companies, how tough the vocal trainings are and how professional they are. From the costume to the way they talk to their PR skill. How tough it is on their own communities to make a name for themselves. Because they could sing like hell and we were like my goodness! That’s the standard. We were quite alright. I mean, we went there with the vision to show them what Sri Lankan music is.

Once we go internationally they have heard basically all genres of music. When you represent your country you have to show those folks what you are made of. We can’t go there and show them what hip hop music is or how to do an R & B act because it’s their thing. So we blended our own things and did something of our own which made us like ‘the talk of the town’ or something. The plus point we had is that we had our own share of stage performance experience here in Sri Lanka. It’s not only about how you look or sing. It’s an overall game. We went there and showed them like we are overall performers. We had the basics covered and we had something more the others. It was sort of a lengthy process. We stayed there for a week. Throughout the week they have monitored us. We didn’t know that we kind of have the sense. So we were prepared for their surprise package. It was kind of a rigorous training and an experience that we will never forget.

Centigradz : A Unique Unity of Euphoria As a band who or what was your biggest inspiration?
Internationally we can say, Black eyed peas, Back Street Boys, Linking Park, Mark Anthony, Usher, Jay Z, Kanye West… there are a lot of cause.

Here’s a fun question. If you could perform with anyone in the world, dead or alive, who would it be?
With the dead folk of cause no point! I’d prefer it to be a band. With guitars, live performances, singing at the highest level and with a bit of technology coming into their performance, it got to be Linking Park.

Can you describe your lyric writing process to us? Personally that’s what I believe as the most important part in a song and you guys do it so well!
It’s basically we work with a lot of professional lyricists. To name a few, Duka, Kalum Srimal, Nilar N Kasim, Sajith Dilpahan of cause owns a lot of our hits. He started off with Nage. It was like one of the biggest hits of us.

Shall we talk about “Hadaganna Me Hitha” track?
Basically it sounds a bit different, with the recent changes of cause. We haven’t release a video for quite some time now. The song is getting a very good response. The music maestro did his magic in it. There’s this chemistry inside the song which give a gothic feeling. We have used the violins and live guitars. Anyway from laying the foundation for this and to the finally production it’s a lengthy process. Ultimately when you listen to this song then it gives you this overall feeling of listening to it once again and again. The video looks promising and we are getting good response. It’s something different to what you guys see nowadays. The production company is CS Pictures. Chothira Shanaka directed the video.

What are your immediate goals?
Centigradz : A Unique Unity of Euphoria Immediate goal is to release the album. Easier said than done of cause! We are working on our tour to Europe probably around next year. And we’ll be coming out with a brand new studio where will be having drums, piano and live guitars. It’ll be spacy to have it all at once. That and the concept we that we are working on with the established artists here in Sri Lanka.

Finally, you can leave a message / advice to your fans in youth.
We love them. We are here because of them. Their positive or even negative feedback made us who we are. They showed us for a certain extent that we are on the right track. We are making a change in their lives. We do get a lot of letters, lyrics and comments from them. We love hearing from them.
We aren’t perfect. We all make mistakes. But once you got though them, you will see that those are the days. Always try to learn something. Get inspired by masterpieces. Listen to right kind of music. There are no short cuts. I don’t believe in short cuts. Once you are properly established, and then you can use the short cuts. Don’t use anything for money or the sex appeal. Perfect the basics and give the best you have always. Best advice we can give for you is to be a person of quality, be a person of knowledge with a balanced mind set. If you are a hard working person, if you do your share of hard work and the basics covered, luck will come to you. But you will have to be a deserving person. So, be a deserving person!

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