The sixth edition of the celebrated music-meets-motorcycle event, Harley Rock Riders, took place in Mumbai recently, and Bike India was at hand to witness the motorcycles, metal and mayhem first-hand. Here’s how it went down
Story: Harket Suchde
The deafening revs of large-capacity V-twins, the thump of the double-bass, the excited murmur of gearheads and metalheads alike, and recurring chants of me-ga-deth, me-ga-deth, me-ga-deth. These were the scenes greeting me as I walked into the repurposed Richardson and Cruddas metal foundry (oh, the irony, literally) in Byculla.
A teeming mass of black, either wearing metal-tees ranging all the way from Breaking Benjamin to Cannibal Corpse and everything in between, including a large swathe of Metallica ones in a move that would have been seen as rank heresy but a few years back, or sporting the leathers and badges of a HOG rider spilled in to a count of 10,000 strong as this festival of motorcycling and music was kicked off, all against the backdrop of that iconic Bar & Shield emblem.
All of this was forgotten once the bands started weaving maniacal metal magic, though, from India’s greatest metal export in ‘Demonic Resurrection’ to the more punk-oriented ‘Skrat’ and many, many more of India’s finest. Reggae royalty, ‘The Wailers’, had everyone groovin’ to the beat, but all of this paled in comparison to the real headliners, one of the cornerstones of the Thrash Metal movement: Megadeth. Dave Mustaine and crew absolutely slayed (pun absolutely intended) it in a set at the end of which I, and a majority of that crowd, could barely stand, and my neck was stiff and body was sore from all the headbanging and moshing that the power-packed performances induced over the two days.