“The best musical metal band this side of Mars. Amazing bass player. Brilliant vocals. Searing guitar. Thundering neutron drums. This band feature instruments which are weapons of mass destruction…. Oh, to be so young.”
Ian Anderson/Jethro Tull/ presents Dogma on its official website
Dogma’s music is an extremely unique and a compound fusion of Armenian ethnic melody and progressive metal elements, which can transfer the listener from a powerful mountainous landscape to a serene apricot garden in the blazing sun.
The Classic Rock Presents Prog Magazine describes it as: “Aggressive riffs, ethnic vibes and psychedelic soundscapes all wrapped up with stunning delicate female vocals”.
“It doesn’t matter how much or how little you know about Armenia, there is one thing that you can add to the list if you have not already done so: a band called Dogma! […] I’d say Dogma’s music is more like a slow acting but highly addictive drug that you just can’t get enough of”. […]There is no mistaking Dogma’s music for anything else, and unless another band comes along that successfully combines Armenian folk music with intricate and powerful Progressive Metal with a 70s edge, it is likely to stay that way. Femme Metal Webzine / Italy
“They are a very melodic balance of yin and yang, the fierce sound of the music punctuated by peaceful overtures and interludes, while the power and sensitivity of the vocals blend with the varied pace and rhythms of the guitars like water follows the terrain of a mountain valley, while never actually becoming the mountain itself”. Chris Tricket /Blogger
In the beginning of 2010 Zara was invited by Ian Anderson, from the legendary British band “Jethro Tull”, to do the guest act for his show in Yerevan on September 24. During this fantastic concert Zara performed together with Ian, presenting two songs of Jethro Tull (“Locomotive Breath”; “Mother Goose”) and two Dogma songs (“Renaissance”; “Awakening”).
In 2012 Dogma was invited by the German world-known “Wave Gotik Treffen” Festival and played a concert at the Leipzig Central Theater on May 28. In fact, Dogma has been the only band from Armenia to ever partake in such a huge international festival.
In 2012, Dogma made part of a musical project “A to A: The World in Harmony”. The project was a synergy between the Luys Foundation, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the United States Embassy in Armenia, the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra and Dogma band. Dogma presented four musical pieces composed with “Hyperscore” by the children from the United States and Armenia, led by renowned Composer and Inventor Tod Machover.
In 2012 Dogma was the guest performing band for Red Bull X-fighters Jams in the Republic Square of Yerevan.
In 2015 Dogma started an unprecedented tour in Armenia, performing in almost all Armenian regions, thus bringing the culture of giving a high quality concert technically complying with the highest international standards into the farthest cities of Armenia and the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh.
Dogma was nominated in “Phoenix’ Caucasian Music Award” annually held in Georgia and won awards “For The Best Video 2012 (“Renaissance”)” and “For Music Development” 2014 (Melancholy)”.
In 2018 Dogma toured in Poland, performed at Wschod Kultury festival in Bialystok and Krakow.
DOGMA is an Armenian ethnic progressive rock/metal band created in 2008 in Yerevan. It was found by two famous in Armenia musicians – bassist Vardan Grigoryan and guitarist Heno Grigoryan, who both played in the legendary in Transcaucasia MDP band from 1994 to 2007. In December 2007 a young and charming vocalist Zara Gevorgyan, who was totally unknown to the music sphere, joined Vardan and Heno. Soon after that Derik Vardumyan, who is a famous musician and drummer in the metal sphere of Armenia, teamed up with them, thus making up a four piece which defies its relatively small size with thundering music so potent it seems to come from an army of musicians.
The first private concert was on January 5, 2008, in front of an audience of just friends, musicians and journalists. It turned out to be something impressive indeed, something rather unexpected. And this was Dogma’s triumphal start.
Very soon after a number of sold-out concerts, private concerts in their studio and well-received festival appearances (also as organizators) and active public engagement during one year, in the beginning of 2009 the band celebrated its 1st anniversary and started the studio work on the debut album, which was unleashed in December 2009 with the unordinary title “Ethnic-Methnic”. Օn December 2, 2014, after another year of recording Dogma released its second album titled “Under Dogma”.
Later in 2014, after 6 years of togetherness, drummer Derik Vardumyan decided to take a time-out & leave the rock scene for a while. Very soon Dogma invited Gor Avetisyan - very young drummer, who grasped their attention by his keen drumming, smooth technique and bright personality, who gladly accepted their offer to make part of Dogma. Soon, along with Gor Dogma released its 3rd album titled “Na Ne”, on July 14, 2016.
Dogma is a desired guest of all big local and international festivals taking place in Armenia. Dogma’s concerts are always sold-out and long-expected by its fans. However, Dogma avoids partaking in glamorous music industry gatherings and music award ceremonies, finding them ridiculous and having no connection with real music and its creation, this way preferring to stay somewhere between the underground and the mainstream. Their videos on their YouTube channel are mainly of live concerts, considering it the best and honest way of giving real emotions. Nonetheless, Dogma has music videos as well, when felt like doing it and not dictated by music industry game rules.
DOGMA AND VIBROGRAPHUS
Dogma band members are founders of “Vibrographus” company, which for the past 17 years has made all possible efforts to keep the rock scene in Armenia alive by constantly organizing international rock festivals, rock concerts for new local bands and concerts of world-known artists such as Jethro Tull, Uriah Heep, John McLaughlin, Deep Purple, etc..
Vardan Grigoryan, the bass player, is the president of the Armenian Rock Association, the aim of which is to develop the rock sphere in Armenia. The biggest international rock festivals organized by the efforts of Vardan are “Yerevan Summer Music Festival”, “Music Drive Festival”, etc.
Since 2008 Dogma has been the initiator and organizer of the rock stage for “Erebuni Yerevan” City Day celebrations marked every year.
In 2019 the band started a new initiative and shot a 4 series documentary film about all the rock musicians and bands ever existing in Armenia, concluding it with a 2 days open air “Journey To Armenia In Rock Festival” with the participation of all old and new Armenian bands.
All of this, of course, takes huge efforts, time and investment. But, nonetheless, Dogma band members are hard-working and optimistic people, who are devoted to their mission and enjoy doing it and sharing with others.
It was October, if I’m not mistaken, I was in the studio working on one of the «masterpieces» of the Armenian rock, when a charming, original, a bit strange and tiny girl appeared on the threshold.
She wanted to present her pieces and get recorded… She sang a song… read her lyrics… and everything was clear to me… I found what I’d been searching for many years… beautiul voice, pure Armenian way of thinking, healthy logic… in a word – she was our type… Zara became the treasure of our band…
During the same period one of the best metal bands in Armenia breaks down. I knew their drummer Derik for a long time, and liked him both as a musician and as a human, who has an immense sense of humor, and, something more improtant for us, has a good command of Armenian spiritual and folk music. As a matter of fact, I offered Derik to join our newly created band. The offer was accepted.
Heno… A guitarist who doesn’t resemble anyone… we’ve been playing, thinking, creating together for over 20 years… I guess it says everything…
By Vardan Grigoryan