|About: PENTAGRAM (a.k.a. Mezarkabul)
In 1987, when there wasn’t much speaking of metal music in Turkey, two childhood friends,
Hakan Utangaç (guitar, vocals) and Cenk Ünnü (drums) came together to name themselves Pentagram. When Tarkan Gözübüyük joined up later that year on bass, the core of this
legendary band was formed in İstanbul.
In three years, they drew attention with a string of performances and signed with Nepa Music
(which had been prosecuted by the government for publishing Kurdish music) for their debut.
This self-titled album, strongly supported by the Turkish metal scene, quickly became a local
trend with widespread press coverage and performances on national television. It was already
clear that Pentagram would become one of the essential metal bands in Turkey for their
developing ensemble, influenced by progressive rock and 80’s metal.
Pentagram recorded the Trail Blazer album in 1992 with Demir Demirkan on the guitar and
Ogun Sanlısoy on vocals. Nuclear Blast of Germany took a chance on the record and extended
its reach to the European head bangers. In 1995, Murat İlkan replaced Ogün as the lead singer.
In 1997, their signature touch, blending heavy metal with Anatolian and Mesopotamian musical heritage, reached a point of maturity on the Anatolia album. Released by Raks Music, the most important local label of its time, the album was well-received by fans from a wider circle than
metal enthusiasts alone and was embraced in fifty-two countries spanning five continents after Century Media of Germany licensed it for an international distribution. Pentagram released
their 10th anniversary live album/video, Popçular Dışarı,
both on CD and VHS.
After the success of Anatolia, Pentagram was no longer just a favorite of the local scene, but an internationally acclaimed metal band. They came to be known as Mezarkabul outside Turkey and were signed to Sanctuary Records. The albums Unspoken(2001) and Bir (2002) were recorded at Sierra Studios in Athens.
Between 2003 and 2006, Pentagram went on a hiatus, but when Sony Music Turkey decided to compile their full catalog, the band started back up with a new release. They put out an iconic live album/video titled 1987, marking their 20th anniversary, on CD and DVD before returning to the studio and making the MMXII record in 2012 with Gökalp Ergen on vocals and Metin Türkcan
on the guitar. This album was named the album of the year by Headbang readers. Two years later,
an album featuring live performances titled MMXIV was released.
In 2017, the band reunited with their former members (Demir Demirkan, Ogün Sanlısoy and Murat İlkan
, who are living legends in their own rights) to celebrate a 30th anniversary and
released the album, “Akustik,” which contained unplugged versions of their classic songs. The
band also shared a documentary on YouTube called 30 Years of Stories, which includes early
archive footage and exclusive interviews.
Following a successful tour and the “Akusik Konser” live album/video, Pentagram played over
100 electric-set shows in Turkey and Europe with a chronological set list, featuring each vocalist singing their own era, and then all hit the stage together for an epilog. This gathering has driven
them to make their 8th studio record, Makina Elektrika,” as a 9-piece band with 4 lead vocals
Pentagram has been a ‘metal music performing act’ for many years and has opened for legends
such as Judas Priest, Whitesnake, Accept, Manowar, Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, Anthrax, Queensryche, Guns N’ Roses, Alice in Chains and Rammstein at local and international stages. Sharing musical and lyrical insights for 35 years, the band stands its ground together with a fan
base from every age and every walk of life.
Pentagram, current lineup:
Gökalp Ergen (vocal)
Murat İlkan (vocal)
Ogün Sanlısoy (vocal)
Hakan Utangaç (vocal, guitar)
Demir Demirkan (guitar)
Metin Türkcan (guitar)
Tarkan Gözübüyük (bass)
Cenk Ünnü (drums)
Ozan Tügen (keyboard)
Pentagram (Nepa, 1990)
Trail Blazer (Nuclear Blast, 1992)
Anatolia (Century Media, 1997)
Popcular Disari Live (Raks, 1997)
Unspoken (Sanctuary, 2001)
Bir (Universal, 2002)
1987 Live (Sony, 2007)
MMXII (Sony, 2012)
MMXIV Live (Sony, 2014)
Akustik (Sony, 2017)
Akustik Konser (Sony, 2022)
Makina Elektrika (Sony, 2022)