History of the Band

 

5grs is one of the Iranian Heavy Metal/Thrash Metal Bands formed in 7.Sep.2004 in Tehran by Pooyan Madadi, band's lead guitarist & composer with their discriminating factor being the first Metal band in Iran benefiting from female lead vocal.

The initial lineup of the band consisted of electric guitar players Pooyan Madadi & Mazdak Sadeghi, bass guitar player Navid Naeima, drummer Omid Shahifakhr and front man Arash. They started their gigs with the purpose of covering songs from some Grunge bands including Alice in Chains, Pearl Jam & Audio Slave. These gigs took about a year and during this time the ban's lineup underwent some changes. Shahin Efatian replaced Omid Shahifakhr as drummer, but after just some sessions he decided to drop out due to personal reasons and Aydin Radkia replaced him.

Eventually, on 01.09.2005 the band was able to get their first performance opportunity in Taraneh Hall. Upon performing, like the ritual common in Iran, the band experienced the second alteration in its lineup. Arash dropped out & Ali Azizian joined 5grs as the front man. The aim for having gigs now was performing cover songs from bands such as Megadeth, but this time Pooyan and other band members were composing their original songs as well. The gigs were not as successful as they thought them to be, and by Ali & Aydin dropping out, the band faced hiatus.

After a short-term halt, in 2006, Shahin Efatian, joined 5grs for the second time and Hadi Kiani joined for vocal. With the new lineup and the goal of performing songs from bands such as Iron Maiden, Savatage & Bruce Dickinson and composing their own songs, the band once again kick started their gigs. The offspring of these gigs were two singles called "My Dreamful Place", composed by Hadi Kiani & "City Creeper", composed by Pooyan Madadi with song arrangements done by the band. At this point, the main complication was that, Pooyan, who was considered the fixed & main member sensed the productivity in the band's works cannot be detected as it should be, so once again he decided to put a stop to their activities and he was left to be the sole member with the second phase of crisis approaching.

Meeting Sanam5049 in 2007 was considered to be a focal point in the band's history and the first full-length album from 5grs titled "Access Denied" was released consequently. Capability of Sanam5049 in vocal performance & writing lyrics on one hand, and the interrelation of their attitudes, on the other hand resulted in quickening up the pace of gigs.

 

1st Album - Access Denied - 2008

 

In the first gigs of Pooyan & Sanam5049, a single called "We Are Freaks" was born. The basis of this song was generated beforehand, but it still didn't reach the maturity it required. After Sanam5049 started creating vocal line & writing lyrics, the structure of the song completely changed and the title was altered to "Runaway" which was the starting point of an energetic era for the band. Afterwards, the gigs were held frequently. At this stage, Pooyan composed the songs and Sanam5049 arranged vocal lines for them and upon spending a year like this, in 2008, 5grs debut album was recorded, mixed, mastered and released. But this process is not a routine one in Iran, since no Metal band formerly was able to release an official original album and this created complication for the band, to the extent that Pooyan calls it "the most complicated procedure overall". Luckily, Pooyan met a publisher through a studio-owner, but even by having that opportunity; it took him 6 long months and great deal of money & energy to release the album on 25.07.2008 in the underground scene.

The next important event was a one-day exhibition held with audio/video products of 5grs in Tarrahan Azad Gallery with 600 visitors. In the said exhibition "Access Denied" album, together with the first music video of the band called "Judgement Day" which was one of the songs in the album and the commercial T-shirt were put on sale. The first video was composed by Pooyan & Mazdak, arrangement of Pooyan & directed by Pedram Etemadi as an animated video & was aired on PMC & GEM TV channels. What was strange in the video was absence of Sanam5049, since appearance of females as singers & performers is against the rules. In this regard Pooyan Madadi stated "Everybody said Pooyan was really selfish, but the truth was that she refused to appear in the video herself." the debut album consisted of 9 tracks which overall was 51 minutes. Theme of lyrics which were written by Sanam5049 was basically dark social & political criticisms. Among these songs "Judgement Day" & "Access Denied" were popular ones. Some guest musicians assisted the band in Access Denied: classic guitar player Mazdak Sadeghi, Violinist Kiarash Ghorbani. Sanam5049 performed the vocals & Pooyan Madadi played electrical guitar, composed, arranged & programmed the songs and even produced the albums.

Pooya Abbasian was the graphic designer who assisted the band regarding album cover and in designing them the works of art of Pooyan's dad, Mohammad Ali Madadi, was used as the main theme and the name of the band was the impression of one of his paintings as well. Pooya designed the logo of the band and did the lateral designs too.

Another peak following Access Denied was radio BBC interview with the band in a program called "Children of Revolution" in which the works & struggles of the band and in particular "Funeral" single was discussed and was aired in the first episode of the program.

 

Live in Armenia – Metal Front Festival - 2008

 

One month after releasing the debut album, an invitation was received by band from Metal Front Festival in 2008. The headliner of this concert was Melechesh from Netherland; other bands from Iran such as Mordab & Vaspooher were attending as well. Pooyan once more started attracting musicians in order to perform in the festival and Sanam5049 decided not to attend for security reasons and instead Maral & Arezoo attended as lead & back vocalists respectively. Other members attending in Metal Front were: electric guitar player Kasra Momeni, bass player Ali Sanaee & drummer Saeed Piltan. The concert was considered a different experience for the band. Upon returning to Iran Maral left the band and Arezoo remained. By proceeding the gigs, working on the second music video was proceeded which was postponed because of the Armenia's performance. In directing this video which was called "5grs”, 4th song in the debut album, as opposed to the previous video all members of the band were present. The video was directed by Samad & produced by Pooyan & Samad.

 

2nd Album - Let's Crush - 2011

 

In this era, Pooyan was insisting on having frequent gigs and during 15 sessions the band covered some songs from Arch enemy & composed some of their owns, but once more two members of the band ,Saeed & Arezoo, dropped out and Sanam5049 & Kasra continued as the key members. At this time Pooyan & Sanam5049 started working on the new album called "Let's Crush". As before, in this album Pooyan composed & arranged the songs and Sanam5049 wrote & voiced the songs. The theme of this album included contemporary incidents in Iran in summer of 2009. Before releasing the album, a single called "It's Time to Change" was released and a video was released by an anonymous director. Most of the songs were composed and the band members are looking forward to release it in the next 6 months.   

 

Upon passing this phase, a new vocal called "Nelly" was auditioned and joined the band as the lead vocal. the band members entered a series of tight gigs of "let's crush" album with the new vocalist for making a live DVD of the album, in which all the songs were recorded live but for some technical and financial problems the project left unfinished.

 

Unplugged - Tehran - 2011

 

After nelly joined the band, Amir Kharrazi who is a live manager arranged three unplugged gigs in three different café in Tehran which faced a lot of positive feedback from the audience. The lineup for these gigs included Pooyan, Nelly and Mohammad.

 

RAM Battle – Dubai - 2011

 

After a while on July 29th, 2011 the band got ready to participate in an international music contest called “RAM Battle” in Dubai. The contest was headlined by the Doom/black metal band from Jordan named “Belocate”. Meanwhile Mazdak rejoined the band as the guitar player and also Soheil as the drummer. After about one month of hard practice, the band played at RAM battle and hit the 3rd place among the eight bands.

 

Live At Unirock Festival – Rock ‘n Rolla Bar and Dorock bar - 2011

 

After the contest, Soheil left the band and Mehdi Tehrani replaced him. The band continued their practice routine, until September 2011, when they got the opportunity to play at Unirock open air festival, Rock 'n Rolla bar and Dorock bar, in Turkey. Their first performance was at Rock ’n Rolla bar which was a successful one, but just only one day was left for the big show at the third day of Unirock festival which was headlined by Mayhem, the band received bad news concerning some security problems back in Iran

 And because of that Mazdak refused to play for the show and the band played with four members including Pooyan, Nelly, Mehdi and Mohammad. After the festival the band had two other gigs in turkey, but due to that security problem in Tehran, all the members including Mazdak, Mohammad and Mehdi left the band and returned to Iran, but Pooyan and nelly had to stay in turkey for four months. After that nelly could make her way out to France in such a mysterious way and Pooyan was left alone with the band once again.

After residing in Turkey for 4 months, Pooyan returned to Iran with help of some Turkish bands. Soon after his return, he formed a band named Night Crawlers which was a cover band with some songs of Iron Maiden and Judas priest. The lineup included guitar/lead player Arash Radan, guitar/lead player Pooyan, bass player Faraz Jabbari, Drummer Yashar Mojtahedzadeh and vocalist Farid Fahim.They played in a musical institute in Tehran for three nights in a row and received a very good feedback from the underground Iranian metal heads. Night Crawlers were the starting point for Yashar and Faraz to join 5grs.

 

Live at Persian Metal Festival – Armenia - 2012

 

On September.14.2012 the band traveled to Armenia, for participating in the first Persian Metal Festival, but before that the band needed to get another guitar player and Arastoo Hanafi joined the band.

Interesting is that, this was the first time for Sanam5049 appeared as the lead singer of the band.

The lineup for the festival included Pooyan/ Guitar, Faraz/ Bass, Yashar/ Drums, Sanam5049/ Vocal and Arastoo/ Guitar. This was one the most successful performances of the band. After that Arastoo left the band and was replaced by Soheil Olfat (former guitarist of Azhirock), then they went to the studio for recording their 3rd single track called Hazy Town. This song was written by Pooyan during his 4 months stay in Turkey and was released at the end of 2012.Arash Radan played the solo part for this track.

After a short while a film director asked the band to write a title song for his short film called “The Dark Side” which was another new musical experience for the band.

 

Live at Arm Rock Festival – Armenia - 2013

 

In 2013 the band traveled to Armenia again and this time they hit another International music contest called Arm Rock Festival. Eighteen bands from different countries like Armenia, Georgia, Turkey, Russia and two bands from Iran were participating in the contest. The band won the best Drummer and the best scream singer title at the festival.

 

3rd Album – Built on Blood - 2016

 

After Arm Rock, the band returned home and started to work on some new stuff for the third album. During this process Soheil Olfat left the band and meanwhile Sanam5049 and Pooyan had a lot of arguments and conflicts concerning the style of the vocals of the third album. These arguments resulted in almost one year of delay for the project and the band decided to replace Sanam5049 which after a long time of searching, they couldn't find any replacement for her. After a long term negotiation, the band could convince Sanam5049 to sing for the third album. Meanwhile on October 17th, 2014,Pooyan went to “Mordab” studio to record the guitar parts, then Faraz hit the same studio for bass parts and Yashar recorded the drum parts at Hadi Kiani’s “Dream Wave“ Studio and finally Sanam5049 recorded the vocals. At the final step the album went to Ali Esfahani’s “Mordab” studio for mix and mastering and the whole project was done on March 28th, 2015.

Then the band sent the album for their manager, Leonardo Ferri who was involved with the whole process since the beginning and he started looking for some promotions like getting a record label and managing some gigs in Europe. He also made a music video for “Leaving my town” track from the second album “Let’s Crush”. While the band was working on the third album, they had an interview with a program called “le petit journal” from France canal +.they had the interview at the band’s practice base and the performance of the band really surprised the TV staff. The band once again was invited to “le petit journal” and this time in a show called “Young Creative People around The World”.

The theme for the third album is totally about “War” and as the band stated the album started with warning alarm at the time of Iran and Iraq war which had a huge impact on them.

 

After the 3rd album was done, Leo traveled to Tehran for two weeks, and soon he started to record all the

Material for video clips and a documentary, he was supposed to make for the band.

Leo started to work on the video clips and the documentary soon as he returned to London. He also got some footages collected by the band.

 

At 23rd Aug 2016 the documentary was done and Leo starts working on the video clips and he did some great job. The documentary is supposed to take part at some short film festivals.

Meanwhile the band is getting ready for a European tour and Leo searching for a vocalist in Europe.     

  

Current Members:

 

Pooyan Madadi: Guitar

Faraz Jabbari: Bass

Yashar Mojtahedzadeh: Drums 

 

Ex Members:

 

Guitar: Mazdak Sadeghi, Kasra Momeni, Arastoo Hanafi, Soheil Olfat

Bass: Navid Naeima, Ali Sanaee, Mohammad Halaji

Drums: Omid Shahifakhr, Shahin Efatian, Saeed Piltan, Soheil, Mehdi Tehrani

Vocal: Arash, Hadi Kiani, Maral Afsharian, Arezoo, Nelly, Sanam5049

 

2004 - Live at Taraneh Hall – Tehran - Cover songs

 

Members:

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Mazdak Sadeghi: Lead Guitar

Navid Naeima: Bass

Aydin Radkia: Drums

Arash: Vocal 

 

2008 - Live at Metal Front Fest – Armenia – Yerevan

 

Members: 

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Kasra Momeni: Rhythm Guitar

Ali Sanaee: Bass

Maral Afsharian: Vocal

Arezoo: Vocal

Saeed Piltan: Drums

 

2010 - Lets Crush - Live Performance for Making DVD - Tehran

 

Members: 

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Mazdak Sadeghi: Lead Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Bass

Shahin Efatian: Drums

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Let's Crush Unplugged - Cafe Chi - Tehran

 

Members: 

Pooyan Madadi: Acoustic Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Acoustic Bass

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Let's Crush Unplugged - Cafe Aria - Tehran

 

Members:  

Pooyan Madadi: Acoustic Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Acoustic Bass

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Let's Crush Unplugged - Cafe Piadero - Tehran

 

Members:  

Pooyan Madadi: Acoustic Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Acoustic Bass

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Live at RAM Battle - Dubai

 

Members: 

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Mazdak Sadeghi: Lead Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Bass

Soheil: Drums

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Live at Unirock Festival – Turkey - Istanbul

 

Members:

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Bass

Mehdi Tehrani: Drums

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Live at Rock 'n Rolla Bar – Turkey - Istanbul

 

Members: 

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Mazdak Sadeghi: Lead Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Bass

Mehdi Tehrani: Drums

Nelly: Vocal

 

2011 - Live at Dorock Bar – Turkey - Istanbul

 

Members: 

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Mazdak Sadeghi: Lead Guitar

Mohammad Halaji: Bass

Mehdi Tehrani: Drums

Nelly: Vocal

 

2012 - Live at Persian Metal Festival 2012 - Armenia - Yerevan

 

Members:

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Arastoo Hanafi: Lead Guitar

Faraz Jabbari: Bass

Yashar Mojtahedzadeh: Drums

Sanam5049: Vocal

 

2013 - Live at Arm Rock Festival – Armenia - Yerevan

 

Members:

Pooyan Madadi: Lead Guitar

Soheil Olfat: Rhythm Guitar

Faraz Jabbari: Bass

Yashar Mojtahedzadeh: Drums

Sanam5049: Vocal