If you happen to follow Samir Hafiz, guitarist of Powersurge and Warfaze, on Instagram, chances are you may have come across a post of his on Friday night where he uploaded a picture of his scraped knee, captioned, "It was worth it."
How did it happen, you ask? Well, he attempted a powerslide on stage while performing for Warfaze. Yes, at times that's how crazy things got at BAMBA- Channel i Band Music Fest 2022.
Open air concerts at Army Stadium come with the good, the bad and the ugly; but this time around, it was mostly just the good.
The concert was advertised as the biggest show of the year. It featured 16 bands and all of them are big names in the industry: Nagar Baul, Miles, Warfaze, Souls, Renaissance, Aurthohin, Artcell, Dalchhut, Feedback, Vikings, Obscure, Cryptic Fate, Powersurge, Pentagon, Shironamhin and Maqsood o Dhaka.
It's very difficult to select a certain moment from a show which featured the creme de la creme of Bangladeshi musicians. But it was no surprise that when Nagarbaul took the stage, the audience was at their loudest and was having the most fun.
Everybody went crazy when James performed 'Dushtu Cheler Dol'. People took out their flashlights on their phones to create their very own 'Tarai Tarai moment' with their significant others when James performed the song.
The show brought together all kinds of fans – regular concert goers as well as the casual fans.
"I always heard from people that Army Stadium concerts are not the safest place for women. However, this time around, management was excellent. Going in was hassle-free for me. The crowd behaved. Additionally, they had food and drink stands which was a blessing because you need these for shows that last for hours," said Farzana Meem, a member of the audience.
Time constraints are actually the biggest challenge when trying to cram 16 bands into a single event; this disappointed the crowd who stayed way past midnight only to see their favourite bands play only one or two songs.
Artcell got up on stage after 11 PM only for just two songs. Warfaze got up around midnight and performed their famous track 'Purnota'. The crowd cheered them on to stay on longer, but unfortunately they too had to leave after performing two songs.
It was great to see Ibrahim Ahmed Kamal, guitarist and founding member of Warfaze, on stage. He has been struggling with physical issues in recent times and is not as regular on live shows as he once was.
The entire show was staged after BAMBA (Bangladesh Musical Bands' Association) declared 1 December as Bangladesh Band Music Day. But it felt like a missed opportunity that they did not include any younger and up-and-coming bands, and they did not allocate enough time for each of the bands. If the revival and growth of the industry is what BAMBA is aiming for, we would also like to see talent hunt programmes from the organisation, something we haven't seen in over a decade.