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By Shamma M. Raghib

Apart from Kamal's hobby of comics' collection, Shishir's love of food, and Sumon's hobby as an ardent movie-watcher, their common hobby is music and their common shell is Aurthohin. Rising Stars managed to grab an opportunity for a teatime discussion with the band Aurthohin.

Present Line-up:
Sumon: Vocals, Base, and Acoustic Guitar
Rafa: Vocals, guitars
Shishir: Lead Guitars, Keyboards
Kamal: Lead guitars
Shuvo: Drums

It all started back in 1993 when Sumon started a side project called “Sumon O' Aurthohin”. The prime reason for naming the band Aurthohin was because of the song 'Aurthohin' which he had a soft corner for, since the song had the contributions of eight of the most prominent guitarists of all time, and also various other musicians. In fact Sonjoy (Warfaze) and Sumon gave the vocals there. The album was released in 1997 and got a huge response. In 1998 Titi and Sentu of 'Faith' came forward and Sumon started performing under the name of “Sumon O' Aurthohin”. After a while the full-fledged band Aurthohin was born! The initial line-up was pretty unstable but somehow the band's debut album 'Trimatrik' was released in 2000. From then on the band released four albums in the next four years. The albums were 'Biborton', 'Notun Diner Michiley' and 'Dhrubok'. From 2004, the band hasn't released any more albums but they have already started their works for the next album.

As you may have heard, Aurthohin stopped playing gigs for quite some time due to Sumon's health degradation. We started the discussion by asking him how he was now. He said he was feeling better.

Aurthohin's last concert was in December last year. We asked Aurthohin when they would make a comeback in gigs.

Q. Well, there are listeners who are confused about what type of band Aurthohin really is, meaning should we categorize it as 'rock' or 'heavy metal'?
Aurthohin: Well, Aurthohin is basically rock, just plain rock band. But there are different categories in rock like pop rock, hard rock, and soft rock. We do have some songs, which are pop-ish, but we would rather call it pop rock, there are songs like 'Guti from hell', which are heavy metal tracks, while there are others which are progressive rock. But basically Aurthohin categorizes itself as a rock band.

Q. Every Aurthohin album is different from its predecessor, how would the upcoming album of Aurthohin be different, if at all different?
Sumon: The upcoming album will definitely be different. The main problem with Aurthohin is probably that none of us really work on an album in a prolonged manner. Possibly none of the bands in Bangladesh give so little time to their recordings as we do (hehe). We worked on the first album for most probably only one and half months and that was possibly our highest time. The second album was completed in 17 days, the third in 15 days, I don't remember about the fourth though. Basically last time since both Rafa and Shishir just joined the band, they could not give their full potential in the last album, so this time, hopefully they would. Also Kamal bhai is here and he is working with us for the compositions that is a plus point. Apart from some usual soft songs, we are planning to have alternative, new age numbers as well, so for sure the next album will be very different from the previous ones.

Q. Shishir and Rafa are both studying, so how do they manage to give their time to their band?
Shishir: Basically we manage to give time apart from our studies. Likewise, Sumon bhai also has business, and so does Kamal bhai, we all basically try to give our max to the band.

Q. When Aurthohin goes outside Dhaka for tours, how do the younger band members manage?
Aurthohion: Well, first of all Aurthohin tries not to do gigs outside Dhaka unless they are in tremendous pressure. The last two times when we went outside Dhaka, Rafa could not join us and so we had to take in proxies. So you can now say that Aurthohin does not do any gigs out of Dhaka anymore. You see we are not like some bands, which depend on only one or two members. When we decide on something we decide together. When we compose something five of us sit down and do it together. Whenever there are only two members available, we do not sit down together for the compositions. We never took Aurthohin professionally and possibly we never would. We play whenever we feel like it. About concerts, we try to manage even though all of us have different work hours.

Q. So does Aurthohin have any plans of doing solo concerts for their upcoming album similar to Artcell's?
Aurthohin: Technically speaking, Aurthohin is amongst the most <>'dhila'<> bands in Bangladesh. We were supposed to do a solo concert almost two and half years back, but we still couldn't do it. So know we are thinking that we should definitely do a solo concert.

Sumon has coordinated the Aguntuk 3 album, and has plans to coordinate further. We got the hint that possibly the series would end at Aguntuk 5, since there are no more good bands for a few more mixed albums. Aurthohin had come a long way from the beginning, so they think that they have achieved something so far?

Sumon: Well basically when we started Aurthohin, we had the plan that people will appreciate this band for around five years or so and they would love our music. So whatever we are doing now I think it is a bonus for us.

Kamal: I am very happy about Aurthohin. I joined about a year back and so far I have done almost eight shows with Aurthohin. I like the atmosphere here. Initially I wondered about how it would be with a new band since I was with Warfaze for around twenty years now. But they really welcomed me with lots of…

Shishir (in full smiles): Food…
Kamal (sighs): …yeah food. But, the best thing about Aurthohin is that there is no pressure. It is not that there is a show the next day in Mongolia and you have to do it, if you don't want you can just say so and it won't be done. It is as simple as that.

Q. What was the main reason for Piklu leaving the band?
Sumon: It was mainly because of work and family pressure. His new job demanded lots of time from him and so often he used to come late to recordings and jamming. In fact most people do not know that almost 80% of the keyboard works in the album 'Dhrubok' was done by the then newly joined Shishir rather than Piklu. So Piklu let us know that he could not really give time to the band and that it was better for him to leave. This is basically the main reason why he left the band.

Q. When on-stage, what is the thing you think about?
Aurthohin: Money!
Kamal: Amar jonno kokhon bashae jabo
Sumon: The best thing about stage is that even if you do something wrong, the audience won't notice since they are busy jumping around and head banging (heehee).

We came to know that Sumon, Shishir and Arafat (The Watson Brothers) are involved in a side project known as 'Side-project'. On the other hand Rafa is involved in quite a few side projects. Sumon is also involved in another side project with Fuad (Zephyr) on an album. Kamal will bring out a mixed album and an instrumental album.

We mentioned about Rocklink before, which was still aired when we took Jewel'sl (Miles) interview. Sumon is also one of the anchors of Rocklink, which unfortunately is not telecasted anymore. The reason we came to know, is the fact that Banglalink, for some reason did not renew its quarterly contract. However, we were assured that after three months, either Rocklink will return or else Rock-something will be aired. We also came to know that the same production house for Rocklink is coming up with another TV show pretty soon, but for that we have to keep our fingers crossed.

The new bands need to consider something before planning on an album…
First of all it is not that easy. The bands need to put into consideration the production house, their audience and their popularity before releasing an album. It is best that they release five or six singles before even considering an album.
The most important is of course performing on stage in lots of concerts. Let people know that you guys exist and that you are a good band.

Well folks, we do hope that this senior band keeps on inspiring you for years to come, in the end the bottom line is to bring out a unique music style which you can call your own. Who knows? Maybe someday soon you will get to see your band in centerfold…that is if you have one. Till then I am off…

Superman Returns

Review by Gokhra


Superman - Brandon Routh
Lois Lane - Kate Bosworth
Lex Luthor - Kevin Spacey
Richard White - James Marsden
Perry White - Frank Langella
Martha Kent - Eva Marie Saint
Kitty Kowalski - Parker Posey

Finally got the watchable print of Superman Returns and can't say I have not been holding my breath.

The producers having spent $200 million it should be decent. So what's it really like? It is a decent comic book movie if nothing else though those who were fans of the Christopher Reeves starring flicks will end up nit picking a little.

The plot:
Superman left Earth to check out rumors regarding his old planet, presumed destroyed. He comes back after a few years and manages to take up his old job as reporter at the Daily Planet as the goofy Clark Kent.

In the five years that he has been away a lot has changed. His love Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth) has got a Pulitzer Prize for her editorial, "Why the World Doesn't Need Superman." She also has a handsome boyfriend or something of that sort in the form of James Marsden who also works at the paper. And to tie it all up there is also the matter of her little son (Tristan Lake Leabu). Only things that have remained the same are his boss Perry White (Frank Langella) and Jimmy Olsen (Sam Huntington) as the Planet photographer.

Oh yeah, and Lex Luthor (Kevin Spacey), Superman's arch enemy, is still bald. You would think a guy with so much power, money and vanity would do something about it. Luthor has been sprung from prison and has a another plan to create a continent in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. He will do so out of a single crystalline shard of the exploded planet Krypton. He wants to have his own country and be something akin to god. He is still hell bent on conquering the world. This time he is aided by Kitty Kowalski (Parker Posey).

The verdict:
Brandon Routh's Superman looks amazingly like the original Superman: Christopher Reeve. Although he looks the part he does not quite play the part. He is not that funny. Whereas Reeve had brilliant comic timing Routh depends on the special effects. But then again he doesn't really need to work so hard as the rest of the movie pretty much makes up for it. But Routh does don the cape with authority and grace.

Spacey adds great depth and presence to Luthor although his maniacal attitude is quite different though refreshing from that of Gene Hackman's version from the 1978 original.

What you will love are the occasional iconic shots that are bound to find their way into some spoof movie. Take for example the shot where he floats above Earth and listens to the millions of voices below like an otherworldly creature which incidentally he is. I could place bets that the scene where the bullet hits Superman's eye and crumples will be used somewhere, somehow.

The movie is a bit long at a full 2-1/2 hours especially with Luthor's long drawn out speeches. But it is also good to see character development in movies that are usually dominated by action. It also has its fun side such as an instance where a 12-year-old kid with a cell phone camera takes a better picture of Superman's heroics than Olsen does.

The movie isn't anything groundbreaking such as the last Batman movie. But it is a great looking albeit a bit lengthy high-flying picture. It is your usual satisfying Hollywood blockbuster.

The movie is dedicated to Christopher and Dana Reeve for their unbelievable courage it the face of adversity.

By Tausif Islam

Only a short time back, mobile gaming was strictly limited to a few popular ones such as 'snake' and 'bounce'. The colour phones had a small collection of built-in simple java games, which were good enough for the times when you are stuck in a traffic jam or sitting idle during a load shedding. In spite of the poor graphics and all-too-simple gameplay, some of these such as the snakes were quite addicting.

It's amazing how dramatically things have changed within a short period of time. Nowadays mobile gaming is fast becoming popular, owing simply to the advancement in graphics and gameplay. Following is a quick review of some of the best games currently available for cell phones. Checkout the screenshots provided to have a better idea.

1. Mission Impossible 3:
Genre: Arcade , Rating: 8.6, Close rivals: Splinter Cell CT, Prince of Persia TT Released by Gameloft, one of the leading producers of mobile phone games, MI3 is based on the storyline of the recently released Hollywood blockbuster. The game boasts quality graphics matched with an exciting gameplay where you get to choose from an array of weapons and unleash lethal combat moves on your enemies. The game is divided into 10 levels, and there are three mini games where you'd need to generate a facial mask of an enemy, or rearrange components of a circuit to transmit a signal. Although it is marginally behind its rivals in the official ratings, it still gets the thumbs up for being the

latest in the block.
2. 2006 Real Soccer 3d:
Genre: Sports, Rating: 8.9, Close rivals: Real Football 2006, Fifa 2006

2006 real soccer 3d is first of its kind. Unlike the earlier versions released by Gameloft and EA Sports, this one offers a 3D perspective to the much loved soccer game. Choose from 32 national teams or one of 16 prestigious clubs to participate in six different competitions available in 5 game modes. Develop strategies and coach your team accordingly. As a coach you could also talk to reporters or vote for the player of the game. All in all, this game is one that would keep you tapping for hours.

3. Need for Speed Most Wanted:
Genre: Racing, Rating: N/A, Close rivals: Asphalt Urban GT2, NFS Underground 2

Based on the underground tuner car culture, this game is primarily focused on completing the race challenges presented in the story mode. Earn money by winning and buy upgrades to create the fastest, coolest car possible. One word of caution though, the flipside of the swashbuckling graphics is that it may not run properly on most cell phones.

4. The Sims 2
Genre: Simulation, Rating: N/A, Close rival: New York Nights

Possibly the best game of its kind, the Sims 2 looks just as good on a cell phone. The classic Sims 2 gameplay allows players to create and customize their own sims, satisfy their wants, buy objects, develop their Sim's careers and skills, and even develop relationships with other Sims. The intuitive 'one thumb' gameplay combined with an immersive 3D Sims world will let both old and new players enjoy the game of life on their mobile phone.

Genre: 1st person RPG, Rating: 8.9, Close rivals: Might and Magic,

Doom RPG is a first-person turn-based role playing game set in the Doom universe where you reprise the role of the Doom Marine made famous in the groundbreaking id Software titles Doom, Doom II, and Doom 3. Engage in over 8 hours of intense gameplay divided into10 action packed levels filled with dangerous monsters, incredible power-ups, and secret areas to explore, and other incredible options.

The games are available for downloads in their official websites. Check out www.gamemobile.co.uk for more info. You can also browse wapsites that offer free downloads (if available). To browse wap sites from pc, visit www.wapsilon.com



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