By A. Akbar

The annual global Hard Rock Rising competition is back for another round of neck-to-neck live-wire battles between the best acts across the globe.

Past installments of Hard Rock Rising have flung many local bands such as Kyoto Protocol, Oh Chentaku, and Tasya’s Ink into the limelight. This time around, a new batch of bands will battle it out for a ticket to the regional level of the competition.

The final four bands have been announced yesterday, with metalcore juggernaut Massacre Conspiracy being the obvious favorites for their earth-shaking performances and discipline.


Amongst their contenders are KL-based grunge band Juxtaposed, consisting of Malaysian line artist Ajim Juxta, and Raja Nazrin and Nazmin Shah from SOG – alongside their two brothers. The band has some serious experience under their belt, and Ajim’s Eddie Vedder-like vocal prowess at their disposal.


Announced yesterday was grunge band Maddame, hailing from Kuantan. Spearheaded by actor Joe Hogan, Maddame looked fierce yesterday as they beat a number of worthy opponents to clinch the last spot to qualify for the finals.


Alternative outfit Spooky Wet Dreams got lucky when they received a wildcard from the organizers – going straight to the finals against three giants of the local scene. Being

the youngest of the finalists, the band has never been short of energy and intensity on stage – giving them a fighting chance to clinch the title against more experienced competition.


With the bands locked and loaded, who do you think will represent Malaysia at the world finals of Hard Rock Rising?