“It’s that classic heavy metal sound that, hopefully, a wide group of people can enjoy.” Canadian rockers Kobra and the Lotus’ major label debut came earlier this year in April 2013 and was released on Simmons Records/T-Boy Records/Universal Music Enterprises (UME). An A&R rep from Universal who had gave the band some very constructive criticism, brought them to the attention of Gene Simmons. The rise of Kobra and the Lotus has been steady since.
Having played stages all over the world with bands such as Judas Priest, Slash, Black Label Society, Primal Fear, Buckcherry, and Steel Panther, the Calgary, Canada-based metal band is well-acquainted with the road. The band recently completed a tour Fear Factory and Hate Eternal, and will begin a tour in mid-July performing in several smaller venues in the U.S.
Kobra and the Lotus’ music crosses over to a wide range of listeners. With such influences like Dio, Judas Priest, Iced Earth, and ’80s bands Ratt, Van Halen, and Lita Ford, to name a few, the young band salutes the masters while bringing speed, power, and regality to the stage their way.
Check out the song “Forever One”
The band took its name from lead singer Kobra Paige. “It’s legally Kobra,” Paige cheerfully insists, of her band’s namesake. “It’s actually inspired by the things that I grew up with in India. I’ve been to India several times and there were two things that really stood out, and I’ve seen time and time again around in the world, and they were the lotus and the cobra. And to me it’s fierce beauty, because the lotus grows out of mud and the cobra is very protective. It always has its hood up, it doesn’t back down. It’s fearless. And I feel like metal is very fierce but very beautiful at the same time.”
“When the band started there was tension to make sure it was heavy metal,” Kobra says. “We wanted to keep that classic sound that people from metal genres and not just metal could enjoy. That’s what we’re aiming towards and we still have that goal as our sound.” Charlie Parra del Riego, one of Latin America’s most highly respected guitarists, recently came into the fold. Alongside Kobra axeman Jasio Kulakowski, a venomous duo has been formed.
“I used to play in a hardcore punk band, hardcore metal styles. Not that melodic. It’s been a total new experience for me because I think it’s very classic heavy metal,” admits del Riego of his new group’s sound and style. Some years before, back in his native Peru, the guitarist played in a hardcore/punk band.
“It’s pretty fun. I got into the band just before the European tour. I had to learn the songs. We rehearsed six times before the tour. And I don’t think we’ve even had 20 rehearsals since then because we’ve been constantly touring.”
Kobra’s vocal development is audibly different since her band formed in 2009, yet she has always preferred singing rather the raspy, guttural vocal delivery used by many of her contemporaries, both male and female.
“We had recorded an independent album several years ago and I had created a different voice for myself, trying to put rasp into it, thinking that I needed to be something more aggressive, and I wasn’t being authentic to myself. Actually what I learned when we went on the first tour after that album was that being genuine and authentic is the most important thing – above all. So everything fell off during that tour and by the time I came back I was singing exactly the way I was supposed to. It was a good lesson for me. If people aren’t going to enjoy the music they aren’t’ going to enjoy it. But I need to be authentic to myself. I think about that sometimes and I feel there is pressure, but at the same time I can only be me.”
Check out the song “Welcome To My Funeral”