Back from their 250-seat sold out concert at the Esplanade last year, Singapore’s pop rock string quartet will be taking you back to the 90s – well beforeOn August 24, 2014 / By Nookmag
Back from their 250-seat sold out concert at the Esplanade last year, Singapore’s pop rock string quartet will be taking you back to the 90s – well before the internet ate our brains and made us slaves to Google and viral videos. Presented by Stella Artois, their show will be held at Zouk, 7.30pm on 27 September 2014.
Blending their sound of adrenaline, energy and raw emotions, VOX pledges a night of epic proportions, complete with their modern-classical experiments backed by a full band and featuring hits from our favorite 90s songs.
The Livescape Group, the organiser behind Future Music Festival Asia, is upping the ante of music festivals by having their next one on a ship. Taking place aboard oneOn August 19, 2014 / By Nookmag
The Livescape Group, the organiser behind Future Music Festival Asia, is upping the ante of music festivals by having their next one on a ship. Taking place aboard one of the world’s largest – the Royal Carribean International’s Vogayer of the Seas – IT’S THE SHIP will have a line-up as impressive as the cruise liner.
Say ahoy! to international acts like Aeroplane, Alex Metric, Chvrches, Crookers, Lil Jon, louisahhh!!!, SBCR (The Bloody Beetroots), and Tropkillaz. Regional acts include Dangerdisko, H3, and Twinkies from Malaysia, and Rave Republic from Singapore. The good news is that this line-up is not even complete, so stay tuned for more.
IT’S THE SHIP embarks from Singapore on 21 November 2014 and will return to the sunny island on 25 November via the straits of Malacca. It’s highlight (as if it needs any more of it) will be on 23 November, when the cruise liner will dock in the tropical island of Langkawi for an epic beach party.
Muhammad Iqbal, Group CEO of The Livescape Group, describes it as a the merging of a vacation and a world-class music festival. We can’t agree more. Guests can look forward to a Vegas-style casino, full sized sports courts, an ice skating rink, a 3D cinema, a FlowRider surf stimulator, and a rock climbing wall 200 feet above the ocean. All of these during your five days four nights on board IT’S THE SHIP.
This experience is yours for an early bird price of USD430 to USD4000 per person if you’re booking the luxurious royal suite. Prices are also inclusive of main meals, selected non-alcoholic drinks, and free usage of most of the ship’s facilities. A registration system at IT’S THE SHIP website, is now in place in order to encourage mixed diasporas on board the cruise. Over 10,000 people have registered their interest to purchase cabins on board, and 60% of them are expected to come from outside of Singapore. Have fun with people all over the world during the floating music festival!
Calling all electronic music enthusiasts! Other Sounds is thrilled to announce the debut Singapore performance of Montreal electronic duo, Blue Hawaii, this September. Blue Hawaii formed when BraidsOn August 17, 2014 / By Nookmag
Calling all electronic music enthusiasts! Other Sounds is thrilled to announce the debut Singapore performance of Montreal electronic duo, Blue Hawaii, this September. Blue Hawaii formed when Braids member Raphaelle Standell-Preston and producer Alex “Agor” Cowan came together to release an 8-song EP, Blooming Summer, following the pair’s travels in South America.
Their latest album, titled Untogether in 2013 was actually written over two years! Interestingly enough, it was written through the couple’s experience of growing apart (as a couple) and discovering who they want to be as a band.
Their first show in Singapore will be supported by newcomer producer FZPZ, who combines the best of jazz and boom gap into the chill trap genre, with his bass heavy and synth elements creating mystical vibes.
The performance will be held at Life Is Beautiful, 99 Duxton Road on Sunday, 14 September 2014. Tickets are at SGD 30 (standard) and SGD 40 (at the door) and doors open at 8pm. Ticketes are available via Peatix.
Runners and soccer players aren’t the only athletes. Music is a tough business, and they produce athletes too. This weekend, GEM BAR will be host to Japanese label andOn July 22, 2014 / By Nookmag
Runners and soccer players aren’t the only athletes. Music is a tough business, and they produce athletes too. This weekend, GEM BAR will be host to Japanese label and retail/record store Jazzy Sport and here’s where you’ll hear what turntable athletes sound like. Representing Jazzy Sport are Grooveman Spot and Masaya “Fantasista” Kobayashi, two turntable pundits ready to bring the cool hip-hop, rare groove, and house tip to GEM BAR fans.
Jazzy Sport started out as a record label in Morioka City, Japan but has since become a hub for hip underground beats after they opened a flagship store in the Shibuya district of Tokyo. Recently relocated to nearby Gohongi, the beat boutique has turned into a production house, amassing Djs, MCs, producers, and designers into its team.
Together, they put out tunes infused with jazz, hip-hop, downtempo, and house. In addition to breaking Japanese artists like DJ Mitsu the Beats, Grooveman Spot, Gagle, Cro-Magnon and Budamunky Jazzy Sport has released a steady stream of collectible records by international cult artists including Count Bass D, SA-RA Creative Partners, Steve Spacek, and IG Culture.
Be part of this uber cool gig, 26 July 2014, at GEM BAR. Event starts 10pm. There’s a free entry for all and Shochu-Bombs are going at SGD10. Don’t forget to commemorate the night by bringing home some Jazzy Sport merchandise!
Those who’ve swooned over the melodious rendition of “Find You” by YouTube sensations Alex Goot and Against the Current (ATC) should thank their lucky stars. Come August, AlexOn July 21, 2014 / By Nookmag
Those who’ve swooned over the melodious rendition of “Find You” by YouTube sensations Alex Goot and Against the Current (ATC) should thank their lucky stars. Come August, Alex will perform alongside Chrissy Costanza, Daniel Gow, and William Ferriand of ATC in Singapore, and it is one sonic collaboration we can’t wait to hear live.
If you don’t already know, Alex is a multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter who won over the hearts of millions by reimagining big songs like “Beat It” by Michael Jackson and “Lights” by Ellie Goulding on his YouTube channel. In the span of four years, these unique covers have been uploaded alongside a handful of thoughtful originals – all of which are self-produced in his home studio.
With a following of 1.8 million subscribers Alex is one of Youtube’s Top 200 channels. So it’s no surprise that Alex has recently released his second EP Wake Up Call, a follow up to 2012’s crowd-funded LP In Your Atmosphere.
Dueting with Alex is Chrissy Costanza, the well-loved front woman of ATC. With the skilled strumming of guitarist Daniel Gow and the powerhouse beats of drummer William Ferri, the trio has been unstoppable ever since their first video in 2012. ATC has covered a diverse range of songs, from “Chocolate” by 1975 to “Not Over You” by Gavin DeGraw, each video showing off Chrissy’s versatile vocals.
No matter the song, ATC maintains a pop-rock vibe and has been active members of the traditional rock touring community. The band released their first album the Infinity EP in the summer of 2014, pleasing over 550 thousand subscribers (and counting!).
ATC and Alex Goot will perform a co-headlining concert at SCAPE, The Ground Theatre on 21 August 2014, 7pm. Get your standard tickets at SGD78 or buy them at the door for SGD98.
If you haven’t heard the smooth vocals of Joel Tan aka Gentle Bones, you’re missing out. We have the 20 year old’s folk-pop tunes on repeat while we hum along (not sing,On July 16, 2014 / By Nookmag
If you haven’t heard the smooth vocals of Joel Tan aka Gentle Bones, you’re missing out. We have the 20 year old’s folk-pop tunes on repeat while we hum along (not sing, never sing… we’re leaving that up to him). His singles Until We Die and Elusive have gotten thousands of views on YouTube, but that’s barely enough for someone as talented as Joel.
Nevertheless, this overwhelming success has prompted Joel to release his self-titled EP. Significantly funded by the National Arts Council’s EP Grant, the album contains three upbeat anthems and two love songs – no doubt his best work so far. The EP was produced and mixed by Roland Lim at Sync Studios, whose portfolio includes 5 #1 and 20 Top 10 hits in Asia and Australia. We’re glad Joel is in good hands!
In celebration of this milestone, Joel will be performing the full album plus other favourites on a one night only concert at TAB. Produced by The Linch Agency and co-presented with Audiotechnica, Joel will be accompanied by special guests Samantha Rui and Gareth Fernandez.
The concert will be held at TAB, on 30 August 2014. Tickets are SGD25, SGD30 (including autographed EP), and SGD35 (at the door, EP not included) and will go on sale on 17 July 2014, 9am via Peatix.
The EP will be on sale via iTunes on 19 August 2014 and limited autographed physical copies will be available online at Gentle Bones Cartel page. In the meantime, wait for the release of his third single Save Me, slated to be out on 31 July 2014.
July started on the right note for some 250 fans of Malaysian-born, Australian-raised Guy Sebastian. Backed by a five-piece band, the singer-songwriter gave his fans an intimate and stunningOn July 9, 2014 / By Nookmag
July started on the right note for some 250 fans of Malaysian-born, Australian-raised Guy Sebastian. Backed by a five-piece band, the singer-songwriter gave his fans an intimate and stunning one-hour set for the popular MTV Sessions.
It was Guy’s first performance in Singapore, and the set at the state-of-the-art Waterfront Studio, Resorts World Sentosa was no short of wonderful. He belted out his hit songs – “Battle Scars,” “Who’s That Girl,” “Get Along,” and “Like It Like That” – and gave his fans something to look forward to when he teased them with, “Like a Drum”, a song from his upcoming album.
The stunning set was proof that Guy is one of Australia’s bestselling artist, but what made the event a wholesome one was his interaction with his audience. Guy engaged the attentive audience with anecdotes about his songs and joked with them throughout the live recording session. The evening ended with a bonus duet for the audience with back-up singer Carmen Smith for “Art of Love”.
MTV Sessions: Guy Sebastian premieres on MTV Asia on Friday, 18 July 2014 at 9pm (WIB), 10pm (SG/HK) and 11pm (MAL) with additional content available online at MTV Asia. Repeat airings of the show will be aired on Sunday, 20 July at 10am (WIB), 11am (SG/HK) and 12pm (MAL), Tuesday, 22 July at 3pm (WIB), 4pm (SG/HK) and 5pm (MAL), and Saturday, 26 July at 3am (WIB), 4am (SG/HK) and 5am (MAL).
It’s hard when your favourite band decides to disband. Especially when you’ve been a fan of their music since the beginning. What better way to celebrate them thanOn July 6, 2014 / By Nookmag
It’s hard when your favourite band decides to disband. Especially when you’ve been a fan of their music since the beginning. What better way to celebrate them than by rocking out with them on their last tour?
Upsurge Production presents Anberlin, Live in Singapore at TAB on 12 September 2014 for their farewell tour. The alternative rock band formed in Florida twelve years ago and have since released six innovative and sincere albums that have affected fans in deeply emotional ways. Lowborn, the band’s seventh full-length, will be their last release.
Don’t worry, the disbandment of Anberlin was not due to an argument or a disagreement. It was more like looking back at the twelve years that the band has had together, agreeing that they’ve achieved so much together, and deciding that it’s time for them to move on. It’s a celebration of being Anberlin for the last twelve years. In the new album, the song ‘Atonement’ addresses the band’s end and history. The last thing Anberlin wants is for their fans to think that they’ll forget them.
Tickets went on sale on Sunday, 29 June 2014 at 3pm. It’s still fairly early, so head over to Peatix and try to get your hands on the early bird tickets at $58. Standard tickets are at $68.
Here’s to Anberlin, and their twelve years of music that has touched the lives of so many fans all over the world.
No longer will you have to listen to Hokkien songs or a weird rotation of oldies and techno during your taxi rides – unless you want to, ofOn July 4, 2014 / By Nookmag
No longer will you have to listen to Hokkien songs or a weird rotation of oldies and techno during your taxi rides – unless you want to, of course. Global music streaming service Deezer is about to change your taxi playlists, making your journey a hip and enjoyable one. Deezer is collaborating with the largest Southeast Asian taxi-booking mobile app Grabtaxi to provide users an unlimited stream of music through its Premium+ subscriptions. With Premium+, GrabTaxi users will be able to listen to over 30 million tracks on their computer, phone, and now…taxis!
“Music is a perfect travel companion for many music fans, especially during their daily commutes. Through this partnership with GrabTaxi, we’re proud to bring additional enjoyment to taxi rides by giving passengers in Singapore and Malaysia direct and easy access to their favourite tracks without the worry of a stable Internet connection,” said Dona Inthaxoum, Deezer’s head of label relations for Asia and Oceania.
From 1 July 2014, GrabTaxi and MyTeksi users in Singapore and Malaysia have the chance to win a two-month Deezer Premium+ subscription through a month-long contest. First-time GrabTaxi users in Singapore will need to download the application, which ia available from https://www.brockenhurst-station-minicabs.com/ as well at the official Deezer site, then activate their account and complete one successful ride to qualify. In Malaysia, both first-time and existing MyTeksi users will need to complete one successful ride as well as refer a first-time user to download and activate a MyTeksi account. All users are only allowed to participate once, so good luck!
GrabTaxi and MyTeksi users in Singapore and Malaysia who have completed the contest requirements need to send their account details (as well as their referral’s account details – only for Malaysia) to a GrabTaxi representative ([email protected]) to redeem the Deezer Premium+ code. Get more deets at the GrabTaxi site.
Calling all band and gig lovers! It’s that time of the year again – Baybeats! This year, Baybeats will be held from 27 Jun, Friday – 29 JunOn May 27, 2014 / By Nookmag
Calling all band and gig lovers! It’s that time of the year again – Baybeats! This year, Baybeats will be held from 27 Jun, Friday – 29 Jun 2014, Sunday. Esplanade has already released the festival line up. Here’s an overview of the bands that will be performing for the festival.
Baybeats 2014 will feature a whopping number of 36 acts from Singapore and the region, with a final act that will be announced closer to the festival commencement. There will be a variety of alternative music genres, ranging from folk, electronic, post-rock to hardcore that will be featured. Over a span of three days, a total of 52 performances will be presented by 35 acts on four festival stages with distinct characteristics.
Baybeats 2014 carries on with the festival’s mission of developing Singapore musicians and music fans can look forward to a wide range of alternative music from Singapore and the region. Through various mentorship programmes – for budding photographers, music journalists, entrepreneurs and video artists – Baybeats 2014 builds on the festival’s efforts to grow a community of music lovers involved in different aspects of the scene. This year, a new programme was launched for budding video artists, engaging Creative Director Josiah Ng to mentor Broadcast Media students from Lasalle College of the Arts to produce music videos for four Singapore bands.
Watch them below:
Now enough of the jibber jabber, here are the performance line ups for Baybeats 2014!
Venue: Chillout Stage (Esplanade Concourse)
27 Jun, Fri
He was asked to perform at the Canadian Music Week 2013 in Canada. Watch his journey here:
28 Jun, Sat
Fall to Fly (Macau)
29 Jun, Sun
Venue: Arena (Esplanade Outdoor Theater)
27 Jun, Sat
Attention! The New Portsdown (Budding Band 2014)
Sphaeras (Budding Band 2014)
Giants Must Fall
28 Jun, Sat
Lost Weekend (Budding Band 2014)
wyd:syd (Budding Band 2014)
29 Jun, Sun
The Livid Sun (Budding Band 2014)
Insight (Yamaha Asian Beat 2013 Winner)
Venue: Powerhouse (The Edge)
27 Jun, Fri
Stopgap (Budding Band 2014)
28 Jun, Sat
False Plaintiff (Budding Band 2014)
Fall of Mirra
29 Jun, Sun
Orangecove (Budding Band 2014)
Earthmover (The Philippines)
Survive, Said the Prophet (Japan)
The Full Pledge Munkees
3-year-old Swedish band Postiljonen is going to be performing in Singapore. The band’s dream-pop/electronic tunes are set to make arms wave, heads bob, and fingers intertwine. Postiljonen hasOn April 15, 2014 / By Nookmag
3-year-old Swedish band Postiljonen is going to be performing in Singapore. The band’s dream-pop/electronic tunes are set to make arms wave, heads bob, and fingers intertwine.
Postiljonen has made huge strides in three years, with tours through their native Europe and as far as China, and shows alongside Beach House, James Blake and fellow countrymen The Knife at Gothenburg’s Way Out West Festival in 2013.
Recently, the trio has made waves with the release of their debut LP Skyer, which features the undeniably catchy ‘Supreme’ and the eighties-influenced electro-anthem ‘Atlantis’. If you’re a fan of M83, The Naked and Famous, or any ethereal music coming out of Scandinavia, be sure not to miss out on a night of hazy chillwave with these Swedes next month!
Malaysian siblings Juno and Hanna will be performing as opening acts, check them out here.
Get your tickets at $35 (standard) here, and $45 at the door. The band will be performing at Pink Noize, 16 May 2014, 8pm.
Run, baby, run Don’t ever look back. They’ll tear us apart If you give them the chance Lyrics sound familiar? You’ll probably be hearing them soon because WeOn April 15, 2014 / By Nookmag
Run, baby, run
Don’t ever look back.
They’ll tear us apart
If you give them the chance
Lyrics sound familiar? You’ll probably be hearing them soon because We The Kings is coming to Singapore! The band will be performing in at The Coliseum, 4 June 2014 and hopefully, Check Yes Juliet, which is where this catchy bit is from, will be on the set list!
We the Kings have rung up a string of top 10 rock albums (2007’s We the Kings, 2009’s Smile Kid and 2011’s Sunshine State of Mind) and several hit singles (“Say You Like Me”, “We’ll Be A Dream” featuring Demi Lovato). They took a different approach with their fourth album, leaving their record label to produce Somewhere Somehow independently. Indiegogo was their platform for funds, and thanks to die-hard fans, they reached their goal in just one day. The fan-first approach certainly worked: Somewhere Somehow is already the highest charting record in We the Kings history debuting #6 on the US Billboard Rock Albums Chart.
The album also reveals a personal perspective. ‘Just Keep Breathing” documents how singer/guitarist Clark was bullied as a kid and ultimately, persevered. “It’s a song about getting to see a better tomorrow,” explains Clark. “It’s a song I wanted to hear as a kid, and I didn’t have. I wanted to write that.”
We The Kings also document their everyday life on YouTube to let the fans in on why they do what they do. Of a particular note is bass player Charles Trippy, who chronicles his struggle and triumphs while battling brain tumour on his personal YouTube page.
These personal touches sure add more depth into their songs, something fans will surely appreciate. “The goal of our band since day one, even from the first album, is to make the world a happier place,” says Clark. “This album just takes it full circle.”
We The Kinds will perform live in Singapore, Wednesday 4th June 2014, at The Coliseum, Hard Rock Hotel Singapore. Tickets are $78 (early bird), $88 (standard) and $98 (at the door). GigBuddies bundle deal – the purchase of 4 tickets and above – are at $78 each. Get your tickets at wethekings.peatix.com or Inokii, Far East Plaza #03-30.
You’re wearing that same old black dress, hair to the shoulders and no less and calling out the same name over and over again, and it’s me LocalOn April 3, 2014 / By Nookmag
You’re wearing that same old black dress,
hair to the shoulders and no less
and calling out the same name over and over again,
and it’s me
Local singer-songwriter Joel Tan, also known by his moniker Gentle Bones, is spearheading the local music scene.
His debut single, Until We Die, hit the #1 spot on the local iTunes charts a day after its release in December 2013 and Elusive, with its relatable and melodious lyrics, looks to be another chart-topper.
Elusive speaks of the despair and desperation one gets from unrefuted love. Joel croons about the struggles and despondencies of waiting for an acceptance that might not come. This is a contrast to Until We Die’s story of an inseparable pair of lovers.
Gentle bones will be showcasing his new single (also available on iTunes, click here) at the Esplanade concourse this coming 4th, 5th and 6th April 2014 playing solo, with friends Samantha and Irwin plus his three piece band!
Having played for the Mosaic Music Festival in 2012, and penned, recorded and performed a song for the 2015 SEA Games, Joel’s career in music and style of acoustic, folk and pop music is going to echo through generations.
Those attending Esplanade’s On the Waterfront will be one the first to hear Kuala Lumpur bands The Summer State and An Honest Mistake’s newest material. Their 2013 KLOn March 27, 2014 / By Nookmag
Those attending Esplanade’s On the Waterfront will be one the first to hear Kuala Lumpur bands The Summer State and An Honest Mistake’s newest material. Their 2013 KL tour together was the spark of a friendship both musically and personally.
The Summer State are back with fresh material to start 2014 with a bang! Comprising of Bryan Sta Maria (Vocals), Edwin Waliman (Bass), Victoria Chew (Guitars), Shaykh Akbar (Guitars) and Ritz Ang (Drums), the band is riding high on the success of their song ‘I Do, I Don’t, and have since played festivals such as Music Matters Live and Jakcloth Indonesia, and opened for US bands – A Rocket to the Moon & Yellowcard. A pretty impressive run so far!
An Honest Mistake will be travelling from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on the back of their recent VIMA Music Awards 2014 win to celebrate with Singaporean audiences and fans alike. Comprising of Darren Teh (Vocals & Guitars), Ashley Chan (Vocals), Leonard Chua (Guitars). Tomas Tam (Bass) & Ian Ng (Drums). We can’t wait to hear and see them perform!
29 Mar 14, Saturday
7:30 – 8:15 pm: An Honest Mistake
8:45 – 9:30 pm: The Summer State
10 – 10:45 pm: An Honest Mistake
30 Mar 14, Sunday
7:30 – 8:15 pm: The Summer State
8:45 – 9:30 pm: An Honest Mistake
Singapore has seen a surge of concerts and gigs, making music fans – no matter what genre – very, very happy. With big names headlining music festivals likeOn March 25, 2014 / By Nookmag
Singapore has seen a surge of concerts and gigs, making music fans – no matter what genre – very, very happy. With big names headlining music festivals like Laneway and Camp Symmetry, and individual acts like Empire of The Sun and Taking Back Sunday making trips to our little red dot, we can’t help but want more.
And more we will get! Experimental post-hardcore group La Dispute is leaving the US and will be hitting Singapore for an exclusive, one-off performance this June. Presented by Other Sounds, their gig at The Substation Theatre is not only the band’s first ever show in Asia, it is also their only stop in the region. We feel blessed!
The band formed in 2004, and have since released two albums – Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair (phew, what a mouthful!) and Wildlife. Soon, La Dispute will release their third album, Rooms of the House, which has already garnered critical acclaim from the likes of Alternative Press, who have called it “a success on all levels” in their 5-star review of the album.
La Dispute’s first show in Singapore will be supported by local indie/punk act False Plaintiff who have recently been selected as one of eight finalists who will perform at this year’s Baybeats Festival.
La Dispute live in Singapore (with False Plaintiff) will be at The Substation Theatre, on Thursday, 5 June 2014. Doors open at 8pm. Tickets are $45 (early bird, limited tickets available) and $55 (standard). Get yours now via Peatix.
Presented by Other Sounds, Canadian lo-fi musician Dirty Beaches will be performing “live” for the first time in Singapore on Wednesday, 16 April. Dirty Beaches, AKA Alex Zhang Hungtai, startedOn March 23, 2014 / By Nookmag
Presented by Other Sounds, Canadian lo-fi musician Dirty Beaches will be performing “live” for the first time in Singapore on Wednesday, 16 April.
Dirty Beaches, AKA Alex Zhang Hungtai, started off as a one-man band in 2005, and has since released five albums and countless EPs. His most recent album Drifters/Love Is The Devil sings about his life on the road over the past two years and follows him down the rabbit hole of heartbreak, rebirth, and masochistic existential self-reflection.
Dirty Beaches’ music could be described as a fascinating dissection of blues, rock, soul, RNB and hip hop mixed with drone instrumentals and film scores, giving the listener a psychedelic feel. And as you can imagine, his live shows are just as immensely intense. So what are you waiting for?
Dirty Beaches “live” in Singapore will be happening on Wednesday, 16 April at Pink Noize (744 North Bridge Rd). Doors open at 8pm. Tickets are priced at $35 (standard) and $45 (at the door).
Mention quartermasters and you’ll think of the military and its well-equipped storehouses. Charles J Tan & The Quartermasters are something else, though equally filled to the brim withOn March 18, 2014 / By Nookmag
Mention quartermasters and you’ll think of the military and its well-equipped storehouses. Charles J Tan & The Quartermasters are something else, though equally filled to the brim with lyrical zest and voices ready to serenade.
Local acoustic singer-songwriter Charles J Tan has toured China and Hong Kong, and will now be premièring with his new band to showcase the new sound, new songs, and a new chapter of his musical journey.
The Quartermasters consists of local, full time indie musicians who bring with them a storehouse of musical talent and stage experience, including Kelvin Ang (of Giants Must Fall, formerly of SIXX), Tim De Cotta (of TAJ, LAB, formerly of SIXX) and music startup entreprenuer Stefan Lim, who founded GigOut, a concert discovery app for Asia. The band is completed with the addition of soulful vocalist, Amy Joy Myers from South Africa.
With individual and unique expertises in this new outfit, Charles J Tan & The Quartermasters’ first live performance as a quintet will surely set the stage for a great musical endeavour. The audience can expect new arrangements of songs spanning ‘The Pelham Sessions'(2011) and ‘Maybe Somewhere North’ (2013).
Charles J Tan and The Quartermasters will also be previewing 2 new songs before they are released later in the year. Each performance is 45 minutes, at the Esplanade Waterfront Stage. The performance will span both nights sharing the stage with favourite local musicians, Kevin Mathews and Shimona.
The performance also coincides with the anniversary of the new album (Maybe Somewhere North) that was released one year ago at an album launch show on the very same stage.
If you grew up listening to the likes of Blink-182, Simple Plan and Sum 41, then the sounds of Aspectrum’s latest EP “Prologue” may leave you with aOn August 18, 2013 / By Gracie
If you grew up listening to the likes of Blink-182, Simple Plan and Sum 41, then the sounds of Aspectrum’s latest EP “Prologue” may leave you with a bitter-sweet aftertaste. Sweet because these adolescent boys possess potential and talent way beyond their youth, and bitter because you realise that the music era of your youth is rapidly translating into a history book of its own.
Rino Darusman (vocals, bass), Tejo D’Cruz (vocals, guitar), James Barker (lead guitarist) and Shaun Sloane (drums) emerged into the local music scene as Godzilla two years ago, presenting their own crafted blend of alternative rock music. Musically and lyrically, the band has made palpable progress from its debut EP “Something New” to the current one – “Prologue”.
With several accolades under its belt including being winners of the inaugural School House Rock competition, Aspectrum has performed at various music events such as Baybeats 2012, “Make Some Noise!” and Converse’s “Get Dirty” gig and is not shy to reach for the stars.
Talent and ambition aside, the band shines in its colourful personality. Genuine and down-to-earth, the boys are candid and cheeky, armed with a valuable life essential – a good sense of humour. Here’s Aspectrum in their own words – untainted and frank, as the boys discuss about their music, song-writing and love.
Nookmag (N): The band has emerged with a brand new name and a new EP, what else has changed for the four of you since you started out as Godzilla?
Rino Darusman: Nothing really changed; we are still made up of the same members and still share the same ambitions. I think it’s better to say that we ‘evolved’ into Aspectrum. Since the band started out as Godzilla, just about two years ago, we did not really know where we were going nor what we were trying to achieve with this band. But as time went by, and because we gained experience from being, playing and meeting a lot of people in the local scene, we were able to create a more refined identity. On the musical side of things, you’ll find that this EP was a lot more different than our previous release as Godzilla. We’ve kind of matured with our song writing alongside with everything else. We now find that we put a lot more thoughts into the song-writing process than we used to. Rather than a change, it was more of us growing up, which is inevitable. This started long before the new name even came around.
N: And how have you grown as musicians?
Rino: As mentioned in the previous question, I think we now understand a lot more the process of song-writing. And personally, I find myself listening to a lot more different genres of music, in order to broaden my knowledge of music in general. For example, I enjoy listening to bands like General Fiasco, Phoenix, The Wonder Years, Mumford & Sons and artistes like Matt Corby, Flume, and even Jamie Cullum. And I also get to listen to music from the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical period as part of my music course at school so that’s even better. I think each of us always brings something different to the table when we are writing. And when it comes to the technical side of things, we’ve found ourselves trying to find new ways to express an idea musically, especially on the guitar work; James is often very meticulous about his pedals.
N: Let’s talk about your new name, Aspectrum. How was this name selected and what does represent?
Tejo D’Cruz: The word ‘spectrum’ refers to a wide range of something, usually the spectrum of colours. We felt that this word being the basis of our band’s new name would be a really good representation of not only what the band as a whole is, but also of each member in the band. We are all of different cultural backgrounds and are into vastly different genres of music, while sharing the same tastes which are heard through our musical works. It is the variety in our thoughts, tastes, and preferences that we seek to mould together into one product that is the music. ‘Aspectrum’ sends this message across in its meaning while also maintaining certain uniqueness as a word in itself.
N: How has the response been for your new EP, Prologue?
Shaun Sloane: The response has been quite good, actually. It’s been out for a little over a month now and I think it’s been doing well especially since we’re still quite a small and up-and-coming band. Surprisingly we’re in the bestsellers section in the alternative genre on iTunes (for Singapore), which is pretty cool. I think we’ve still got a lot of things to do to push the EP as far as we can, and to revive it in the near future maybe by releasing a music video or something in the likes.
N: It’s impressive that you write your own songs. Are the lyrics reflective of what you guys personally went through?
Shaun: What’s really cool about this band is that 3 out of 4 of us write lyrics. Although the other members call me ‘the main lyricist’ of the band, I think it’s cool that we get different stories and perspectives into our songs. For me, before we wrote this EP I really wanted to start taking the lyrical process seriously and eventually found a passion and interest within it. The lyrics are quite relative to not only what I’ve personally gone through, but probably a majority of people. To give a few examples, I wrote More Than My Name about my long distance girlfriend and the love and joy I feel when I’m with her and the sadness and void I feel when I’m not. Although she erases those feelings when we’re together, they soon come back after we have to say our goodbyes again. But it concludes with the thought that she’s worth all of that, she’s worth more than myself. Shaping Change is basically about the passion I found within music and the troubles that come with growing up and realizing dreams are hard to achieve. Which in my case, is wanting to be a musician. Lastly, Streetlights is about (to put it bluntly) me leaving Singapore. Basically having to leave the people you love and having to regain the sense of familiarity in a new setting.
N: What inspires you to write your music?
Shaun: Honestly, I think inspiration comes from everything. What you feel, what you see, or the pure awesomeness and excitement of an idea that could come from anywhere, or anytime haha.
Tejo: For me, the lyrics don’t have to be just about personal experiences. Yeah, it is important in music to get your feelings across – and with the power of lyrics you can do so extremely easily – but I try to have a more open-minded approach when it comes to lyric writing. It’s a story. And the best part about it is that you can make up as much of it as you please. It’s no different to when an author writes a novel. I love knowing that I have complete power over what goes on the paper and I don’t like to restrict myself to just personal experiences. For example, I wrote a song (that hasn’t been worked on as a band yet) about the death of Captain America. I was reading this comic and I thought to myself, ‘Why not?’ So I put myself in the shoes of Captain America and wrote with the intention of taking the listener through all these different phases, feelings, and perspectives. What I’m saying is that having the opportunity to write a story for a song is such a privilege because you have complete control over the premise, and it is something that I thoroughly enjoy doing in the band.
I noticed that there are a few songs about love. How would you respond to someone who comments that you are too young to know much about love?
Shaun: Well for me personally, I think there’s probably a difference between loving someone and being IN love with someone. I try to avoid my lyrics being too mushy as well when it comes to that topic. It’s quite a stressful process to reasonably explain how you feel when it comes to a relationship. I understand the judgement and to see younger kids claiming to be in love and whatnot. But I think we are at an age where we’re mature enough to understand what’s reasonable to claim. On the other hand, we also understand that we are still young. We don’t write songs claiming we’re in love, but more of our individual relationships. It’s natural to be all googly and stupid about a girl that makes you feel good though, isn’t it? And maybe even to eventually be clobbered by it. I don’t think anyone has the right to define what being in love is, I don’t even trust the dictionary’s definition. It’s probably different for everyone. This is definitely the toughest question haha. But in conclusion, we’re writing how we feel. And at least if it’s honest, what’s the harm in that?
N: What does love mean to you right now?
Tejo: Do you mean the love between a man and a woman? Or the love between a man and a chocolate fudge sundae with Kit-Kat, gummy bears, and a topping of nerds?
N: How do you juggle between school and your pursuit of music?
Tejo: Sometimes, it’s really stressful, difficult and even frustrating to try and maintain a balance been the two. Thankfully we have extremely supportive parents who are enthusiastic of our musical pursuits, so it makes it more of a motivation for us to return the favour through maintain our academic standards.
N: What does the road ahead look like for the band?
Tejo: The main focus for us right now is getting shows, everywhere and anywhere that we can. It’s so important for us to get ourselves playing live in front of as many people as possible and to get the EP out there. We’re hoping to head outside of the country and do shows around the region in Malaysia and Indonesia, and somewhere on the horizon hopefully head down to Australia to party with some bands we know down there. In this day and age there are so many ways of getting your band’s work out there and we are exploiting every social media avenue available to us. Hopefully we can use Singapore as a base for what will be operations all around the region and in time further than that.
N: Finally, what do you fancy about your Converse kicks?
James Barker: Converse basically represents what we stand for as a band and the reason we write music. It encourages people to express themselves and also encourages them to have fun. We love wearing the shoes because they look great and the values that Converse stand for are perfect for us as individuals and as a band.
Converse rocks hard this Fall with the Chuck Taylor All Star Rock Craftsmanship collection. Celebrating the spirit of raw rock ‘n roll, these latest Chucks are adorned with studs, zippers, leather and popping colours. Sounds like the perfect way to ‘Get Loud’ this season!
Conversation seeks out inspiring individuals who possess a creative spirit and brim with passion. It offers an insight into the lives of these individuals and the things that drives them. This edition is proudly sponsored by Converse.