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by Michelle Baker and Lucifera Elena

Based in New York, Mahavatar (Karla Williams, Lizza Hayson, Peter Lobodzinski) is a band playing metal steeped in deep, dense and exhilarating tribal influences. Fronted by a vengeful earth goddess of effortless vocal strength, Lizza, Mahavatar is like an intoxicating combination of Soulfly and My Ruin. Currently in the recording studio working on a new CD. The CD will contain five songs: Control Fix, Anger, Jungle, Thirst, and The Prophecy.-M.B.

Mahavatar has been around since 1999 under the name Foresight. Why did you change the name to Mahavatar?
Mahavatar: The band name Foresight was already taken. As for the name Mahavatar, well... it was destiny.

How did the members meet?
M: Lizza auditioned drummers and found Peter. In the summer of 1999 Karla was recommended to Lizza by En Esch (KMFDM), a mutual friend. Eddie joined the Mahavatar November 2000.

Where does the name Mahavatar come from?
M: It has its origins in India. It represents immortality.

Mahavatar represents immortality, so is this what your band wishes to achieve? It almost seems vampire-like but is it the opposite, instead of draining energy, you wish to give it?
M: We want humanity to achieve immortality, but first we must believe we can. We want global not only personal immortality. We want to give energy and get it back.

Do you all relate to Lizza's lyrics? Do you find yourself saying, "yeah I get it" or "what is this"? Are you planning on colaborating with the lyrics for your next release?
M: We all can relate to her lyrics in some way. So far Lizza has been the only one writing lyrics. We don't have any plans to collaborate with her on that, but we never plan how any song will turn out musically or lyrically so... only time will tell.

Would you say the lyrics are humanistic? If so, what is it about humanity, love, politics, religion, personal experiences, justice, racism and emotions that you wish to bring across in your music and lyrics?
M: With our music we want to reach the unreachable... change the unchangeable. We speak about a spiritual revolution in every topic brought forth. We want to remove the vale from humanities eyes with tender and furious hands.

Aside from listening to other people's music, what inspires you?
M: The sounds of the universe... life itself, nature, endless cycles of sound and emotion.

Your music is very diverse. Do you consider yourselves part of the Metal music genre? What bands do you enjoy within the Metal scene? What bands influence you aside from those of the metal genre?
M: We leave the genre labeling for the music critics... we have no need for them. We are influenced not only by music, but by life itself.

What are your fans like?
M:The best! We love our fans because they understand... they are true seed of the Revolution.

Do you feel that women in the underground music scene should get more support? Do you feel there are more women being taken seriously as musicians?
M: We're in 2001... the beginning of this millennium... a point in time where opportunity is not based on gender, but on the degree of hard work... determination.

Where's your favorite place to do a live show?
M: The lost city of Atlantis...

Mahavatar has played numerous live shows in the NYC area alone?
M: No, we've also played in NJ.

Which is your most memorable show?
M: Our last show.

Which one was your worst show?
M: Our last show.

Do you get tired? lol
M: Only the lights and heat tire us. lol

When you're not working on promoting the band and writing/playing Mahavatar's songs, what is a typical day like for you?
M: Hell! We only live for the music.

Tell us a little about each of the members. What are your hobbies? What do you do when you aren't working on Mahavatar?
M: Lizza enjoys underwater quilting. Karla is an avid lint collector. Peter is fond of making paper mache animals. Eddie likes to gather up pointy sticks.

How has being in the band changed you?
M: We've all learned that sometimes you have to use lube. Would you say you are deeply influenced by Eastern religions?
M: No. We are not religious.

How important are the visual aspects of your show, like clothes, etc to you?
M:We all have a natural feel for what we want to wear or how we want to look individually. And it all seems to flow together, just like the music... we don't really think about it much.

Do you use any unique instruments during your live shows other than the usual vox, bass, guitar, and drum combination? Would you be interested in using any special instruments to achieve a certain sound for a song in the future?
M:At the moment, we use a traditional set up, but when we record we experiment with all types of sound sources. We are open to using different ethnic instruments and different techniques to create sound. We we haven't had the opportunity to realize this in a live situation, but we hope to some day.

What's the best advice anyone has ever given you about being a musician? Anything that really stands out?
Lizza: Be free. Eddie: Do it for the love. Karla: Just play. Peter: Don't think, feel.

What goals does Mahavatar have for the future?
M: ... tour the world, spread our message, touch as many people as possible, give and receive energy, groove and have a good time.