Kraken is India’s first band that married cosplay and live music. A brainchild of Moses Koul, Kraken is also the first multi-genre band from Delhi.
The band started including elements of the art of cosplay after it was suggested by Madhura Rumde, Mumbai-based artiste manager. The two first exchanged messages on Instagram and Rumde spoke as a fan, not a manager. Koul was not keen on implementing her suggestion, but after fixing the nitty-gritties of a three-city tour, Koul thought of giving the idea a try.
He then contacted Rumde who put him in touch with the country’s rather niche cosplaying community. Thus, Appearance Disappearance was born, India’s first series of concerts that combine cosplay and live music, reported Mid Day.
Kraken toured three cities, Bengaluru, Delhi and ending in Mumbai. The show consisted of three acts, one set each by Kraken and two hip-hop artists Enkore and Hanumankind. In between musical performances, a bunch of cosplayers enact anime scenes with a narrative. Audience members are also encouraged to dress-up and come for the performance.
"The idea is that every city has its own story, and we have divided the shows across cities into three chapters, each of which has a theme that ties into one overarching story. Every gig is being hosted by a main character, a protagonist who will be in costume. So, it's going to be a travelling Cirque de Soleil of sorts," Koul says.
Rumde explained that cosplaying is relatively new in India and just emerged as a hobby around six years ago. "Many of these cosplayers have day jobs, and do this as a side project. But even though it emerged as a hobby, it eventually stayed with a lot of them and that's how a community was built. These days, I see quite a few people who look at it less casually. They are trying to pursue it and develop it into a full-time thing," she said
As the cosplaying scene is growing in India, events like Kraken’s concert can lend it a helping hand. Cosplaying and music seem to be inter-linked arts as several anime shows prominently feature music. If they go hand-in-hand, then the two entities should successfully function separately as well. If a music enthusiast comes for the music but ends up enjoying the cosplaying, it is a boon for the growing cosplaying community.
"There are so many small communities existing in silos that the only way they can come to the forefront is when intersectional events are held, so that common fan bases can interact with each other and see whether they like a certain thing or not. It's like testing a fragrance at a shop. You won't know whether you like it or not unless you smell it," concluded Koul....