Picture 7

Say Anything was significant for being Cameron Crowe’s debut film as director and John Cusack’s breakout movie as well. In 2002, Entertainment Weekly ranked Say Anything… as the greatest modern movie romance.

Well, Say Anything 20th Anniversary Edition arrives on Blu-ray Disc (for the first time!) and DVD on November 3.  Starring John Cusack, Ione Skye and John Mahoney, and with an eclectic soundtrack featuring the classic In Your Eyes by Peter Gabriel as well as Cult of Personality by Living Colour, Taste the Pain by Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stripped by Depeche Mode and more, it is a must-have for movie and music lovers alike!  You can sample the soundtrack here.



This weekend, we’ll be in for a musical smorgasbord coming from *SCAPE as an eclectic variety of bands from the Philippines and Singapore come together for *SCAPE PRESENTS A SIDE SHOW.

Having graced our sunny shores in August as part of the Baybeats lineup, Taken by Cars will be back with fellow Pinoys, Chicosci, this Saturday at *SCAPE’s Lab for a show presented by *SCAPE and Wake Me Up Music.At Baybeats, Taken by Cars wowed the Singaporean audience with their fun and upbeat music from their first album, Endings Of A New Kind. Citing their musical influences to Electro, Indie and New Wave, you can’t go wrong with music this good, especially when The Fire Fight’s front man, Josh, danced to most of their songs.

Having recently released their 5th album, Fly Black Hearts, Chicosci are back in Singapore for the 3rd time and better than ever! Their popularity in the region and the Philippines has been growing since they started out, winning for them Favorite Artist of Philippines from MTV Asia last year.

They’ll be sharing the stage with our local favorites, Plainsunset and The Fire Fight, representing our best in punk rock and indie respectively. With successful tours in the Philippines, Plainsunset are back with their exhilarating stage performances and their inspiring songs.

Following the SOLD OUT launch of Henri, our favourite quartet have been gigging regularly, having played for Ben Sherman, Gap and the Esplanade.

It’ll be an interesting mish mash of music featuring a few of the best bands Singapore and the Philippines have to offer from their respective genres. I look forward to the musical smorgasbord, and interviewing Chicosci before the gig.

Sat 24 Oct. Doors open 730pm
*SCAPE Youth Centre: Lab
$18 entry
Limited tickets!
( CONTACT _Con-3936AC451 \c \s \l Rebecca Lincoln)

Taken By Cars



The Fire Fight
Official site

Latest Music Video of Chicosci’s song, Diamond Shotgun.

Latest Music Video of Taken by Car’s song, Shapeshifter.


_MG_2325v7 copy

The Beatles Box Of Vision® is the deluxe companion to the newly re-mastered Beatles CDs, and will be available as the ultimate Beatles gift in the UK and Europe this Christmas from and, plus select retailers.

Click here for the official full colour UK press announcement.

Officially licensed by The Beatles’ Apple Corps Ltd., the stunning collection, previously only available in North America, includes the following Beatles’ collectible content: The first book in the box is the LP Sized Album Artwork Book includes 200 pages of the Beatles’ LP artwork – the first time all the Beatles’ UK and US album artwork has been collected together in one LP sized book. The Album Artwork book includes front and back covers, gatefolds, inserts and the complete LP booklets from Magical Mystery Tour and many more.

The second book, ‘The Catalography’, is an extensive, all-new, full-colour guide jam-packed with photos, text and track-listings providing the first-ever side-by-side presentation of the U.K. albums and their U.S. counterparts.

The third book is entitled the ‘The Box of Vision Storage Book” – a highly collectible, unique and stylish way for Beatles fans to organize and display all 32 discs of The Beatles’ core catalog. Beatles fans will have the opportunity to insert CDs and booklets from their existing Beatles collections or the recently released digitally re-mastered versions.

Ideal for fans, collectors and Christmas gift giving, all three Beatles books are housed in an elegant black, linen-covered box with silver embossed Beatles logos and faux Beatles LP spines. The 13” x 13” box features the iconic image of The Beatles photographed by Robert Freeman.




Disc 1:

• Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut Film (includes Tales of the Black Freighter woven in)

• Audio Commentary with Zack Snyder and Dave Gibbons

Disc 2: Over 3 Hours of Special Features

• The Phenomenon: The Comic that Changed Comics

• Real Super Heroes, Real Vigilantes

• Mechanics: Technologies of a Fantastic World

• Watchmen: Video Journals

• My Chemical Romance Desolation Row

• Under The Hood

• Story Within A Story: The Books of Watchmen

Disc 3: Digital Copy of the Theatrical Version

Disc 4 and 5: Watchmen: The Complete Motion Comics

Thanks to /Film for the heads up.


Picture 3

Alright, here’s the skinny on Noise: The Apprenticeship Program.

Mentor. Recording. Performances.

Need I say more?

Okay, maybe I should. In my humble opinion, TAP offers young singer-songwriters and bands a rare opportunity to learn from mentors who have the experience and know-how to pass along a couple of useful tips. Not only that but you will have a multitude of opportunites to hone your craft – all under the guidance of the afore-mentioned mentors.

Believe me when I say that I wish we had something like TAP 30 years ago, when I was 18! So, please, if you’re an aspriring singer-songwriter or band, don’t pass up this chance. All you need to do is to submit a write-up and recordings of two original songs. Closing date is 27 September.

More info at the official site.



Picture 1


Date: 11 Sept 2009

Time: 8pm

Venue: Crawl Space, North Bridge Road – above Straits Records, Singapore

Bands: We GANG, CloseApart, Etc, The Guilt

There’s a decidedly “old-school” 90s vibe about this gig. We GANG is fronted by Adrian Bestium (ex-Rocket Scientists), the Guilt features Dino (out of Force Vomit), CloseApart can boast Harold Seah (formerly of the Dongs) and of course, there’s Ben Harrison’s Etc…whom y’know…

Don’t miss it!


Picture 12

Regular PoP visitors will be aware that I’ve been involved with the National Arts Council’s Noise program for the last 2 years. First, as a judge and then making the transition to mentor in last year’s The Apprenticeship Programme (TAP). Of course, through TAP, I came to mentor Racheal Teo and Nick Tan and the rest as they say, is history!

Anyways, I’m glad to announce that NAC is taking submissions for Noise Singapore 2010 and everything about this sounds exciting.


Winners of Noise S’pore 2010’s 3 main categories – Art & design, Music and Photography – will each receive the Noise S’pore Prize of S$5,000 cash.

Yes, boys and girls, I’ll say it again. CASH!!!

The press release goes on to say –

DJ Aldrin is just one of the 12 big names who are mentors in this year’s TAP. Others include local music luminary Kevin Mathews (*ahem*), Tan Ngiap Heng for photography and Eeshaun Soh for Art & Design. TAP is one-of-its-kind in Singapore and gives young artists an opportunity to be personally mentored by some of Spore’s best in the creative industry. Success stories are written every year of apprentices who go on to become accomplished artists. Singer/songwriter Rachael Teo – Kevin Mathews’ apprentice in Noise 08/09–has developed a following and is sought after on the pub circuit for originals like the breezy (and very infectious) Love and Water. She has an interesting story. She went to NAC to apply for a busking license, stumbled upon Noise instead and, in May, released an EP entitled Awaken The Dreamer – all in 9 months. TAP continues to be a critical and popular aspect of Noise. Last year, out of a record 128 applicants, 20 apprentices were selected.

Believe when I say that TAP is worth getting attached to. Previous apprentices include King Kong Jane and Allura and they’ve done well, haven’t they? I would recommend TAP to every singer-songwriter or band out there. Besides DJ Aldrin and yours truly, other music mentors include Don Richmond, Jason Tan, Jon Chan and Patrick Chng. We’ll be waiting…

Noise Musicians could be selected to record one of their songs in a professional studio, have it played on 98.7FM, and perform at the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre or Concourse. And also be involved with events at next year’s Youth Olympics. International exposure! Are you excited yet?

Check out for more info.


You definitely can’t discount the influence of Japanese anime on Western film and TV, animated or otherwise (Matrix anyone?). Oh and of course, the success of Animatrix and Gotham: Dark Knight projects has proven this fact clearly. Which probably explains Marvel’s own foray into the anime arena with their latest ventures with Madhouse, one of the top anime studios around, which will produce 4 anime series to be released in 2010.

Teasers for the 1st two – Wolverine and Iron Man – have surfaced online and are embedded below.

Whoa! Is that Wolverine? Other than the fact that he has claws, how is this guy Wolverine? Hurm.

Now this is more like it. Way cool graphics.

Comments, anyone?

Thanks to Twitch and /Film for the heads up.




Spurs were given a lesson in simple football by two Barca reserve teams as the likes of Henry, Hleb and Messi sat out this Wembley Cup encounter. For 90 minutes, Spurs barely ventured beyond their own half as Barca reserve teams show their opponents how football should be played i.e. don’t lose the ball when you had it and fight to win the ball when you don’t.

But despite the total domination, Barca still contrived to let in 19-year old Jake Livermore to head powerfully for an undeserved equaliser. That’s football for you. Clip of Livermore’s goal below. Look at Gomes’ response to the goal. Priceless. No, he didn’t expect it either…



Yes, we can call him Marvelman again!

Marvelman was, of course, originally a comic character created by Mick Anglo in the early 50s to replace the Captain Marvel strips being reprinted in Britain, after Fawcett Comics discontinued the popular Captain Marvel series due to legal challenges from DC Comics (DC claimed that Captain Marvel ripped off Superman!!!!) Marvelman was basically a British version of Captain Marvel and the series hit it off with British kids and its publication lasted till 1963.

In the early 80s, writer Alan Moore with artists Garry Leach and Alan Davis revived Marvelman in the pages of Warrior magazine (which also included a strip called V for Vendetta) and was an unprecedented re-invention of the superhero genre, which Moore would perfect with Watchmen a few years later.

Enter: Marvel Comics, who objected, of course, to the use of “Marvel” in the character’s name. No one at Marvel bothered about the fact that when Mick Anglo created Marvelman, the company that would eventually be called Marvel, was called Timely Comics! When faced with such legal threats, Warrior magazine folded. Marvelman ended up in the USA with indie publisher Eclipse Comics but had to change its name to Miracleman. The first couple of Miraclemen issues were re-sized, re-formated and colorised reprints of the Warrior magazine stories and then Alan Moore together with artists Chuck Beckum (aka Chuck Austen), Rick Veitch and the magnificient John Totleben, created amazing, groundbreaking new stories.


One such story (Miracleman #15) concerned Miracleman’s final battle with the evil Kid Miracleman in probably the darkest, grimmest superhero tale ever. This comic book is probably my favourite of all time, its denouement still moves me even after all these years. At the end of this story arc, Miracleman and his superhero cohorts take over the world and rule as benevolent gods, in possibly the only logical conclusion for a world where a Superman exists.

Moore called it quits after that and the creative reins were handed over to Neil (Sandman) Gaiman and Mark Buckingham. Gaiman developed Moore’s premise in eight thought-provoking issues before the bankrupcty of Eclipse Comics brought the series to a premature end in 1994.

Since then, the character has been the subject of legal disputes as several parties viz. Mick Anglo, Dez Skinn (publisher of Warrior), Neil Gaiman, Alan Davis and Image Comics co-founder and Spawn creator Todd McFarlane (who bought over the rights to some Eclipse characters) claimed ownership.

Well, at the recent San Diego Comic Con, Marvel announced that they had acquired the rights to Marvelman from Mick Anglo’s representatives! Which certainly brings the character full circle in a sense and Alan Moore – who was upset about Marvel’s legal challenges in the 80s – will probably have a wry chuckle over this news.

In light of the unresolved disputes (especially with Todd McFarlane), I’m sure there’s still some work to be done before we see reprints of the existing material and (hopefully) new material from Neil Gaiman – well, finish off the Silver Age and Dark Age arcs to begin with – BUT with the financial clout that Marvel possesses, I’m sure that these outstanding issues will be resolved sooner than later. Certainly, Marvel has no doubt about who owns Marvelman as the new Joe Quesada drawn MM poster (see above) attests.

… after all that, can a Marvelman film be far behind? The mind boggles…



ERIC BRACE Tranquility Base single (Red Beet)

For any young boy growing up in the late sixties, the space race was an exciting one.

Space race?

Yes, back then, the USSR and the USA were competing to see who would be the first to put a man on the moon. It seems so quaint now, but I still remember being positively enthralled even as an 8 year old boy in Singapore to watch Neil Armstrong take that first step on the lunar surface.

Lo and behold, that event is now 40 years past and Eric Brace, lead singer of country-rock outfit Last Train Home, has just released a single and video to celebrate and commemorate the first lunar landing. The single is available at iTunes and the video is below. Check it out.



Another sci-fi thriller based on a graphic novel? Bring it on, I’d say!

Here’s the (official) word – In the film, FBI agents (Bruce Willis and Radha Mitchell) investigate the mysterious murder of a college student linked to the man who helped create a high-tech surrogate phenomenon that allows people to purchase unflawed robotic versions of themselves—fit, good looking remotely controlled machines that ultimately assume their life roles—enabling people to experience life vicariously from the comfort and safety of their own homes. The murder spawns a quest for answers: in a world of masks, who’s real and who can you trust?

This Jonathan Mostow-helmed Willis vehicle will hit the cinemas on 25th September and you can check out the trailer below.

I like the Dickian premise and the echoes of Matrix and Terminator franchises won’t hurt either. Expect reviews of the original graphic novel and the Flesh and Bones prequel soon.



People always gasp, “Oh, he’s so young!” upon discovering that Weiwen (aka For This Cycle) is 16 years old. Fact is that when I first met Weiwen, it was in 2007 at Deafcon 5, when he was 14! He has certainly come a long way and his on-stage personality and the breezy import of his songs make him a S-ROCK fan-favorite.

Well, the good news for all For This Cycle fans is that the debut EP will be launched this Saturday night and I get to team up with the talented Jon Chan (again!) as special guests. So its a double bonus I guess you might say. Information is in the flyer above, though I believe that it all begins at 7.30pm. See you all there!

Check out For This Cycle’s Myspace page.

…still there’s more…


Elvis Costello

I was reading a news item on Channel News Asia online about Joan Chen doing something or rather at this year’s Singapore Sun Festival when almost as an afterthought, the article mentioned that singer-songwriter Elvis Costello will also be performing.


I could not believe it and I scoured the internet for news on this and sure enough, the man who is one of my chief musical inspirations, will be giving a solo performance on 5th October at the Esplanade Concert Hall! What fantastic news! And so, the moment the tickets were available, I got mine – third row centre with early bird discount to boot!


So… with the new Costello album – Secret, Profane & Sugarcane – out now (kick-ass country-folk-blues), the months leading up to 5th October will be a time when I will be reflecting on the man’s recorded highlights. I am so excited!

More info here.

…still there’s more…



Two years in the making, the Fire Fight’s maiden full-length album – Henri – is well worth the wait, believe me. My review copy dropped just this morning (Thanks, Esmond/WMUM!) and already I am feeling very good about Henri.

An ambitious concept album about a bear named Henri as he encounters the city of Elemenopee, Henri contains NEW recordings of songs previously featured on the Green Single viz. Fires At Night, Candela, Hours & When Spring Comes Home as well as popular live favorites like Traing Son (yes!) and Beware! Monster.

Not only that but the story of Henri is also told through art pieces specially created by the insanely talented Jon Chan (yes, the Plainsunset dude), see picture above, which truly adds to the overall enjoyment of this musical work.

The band will launch this exciting new album at the Esplanade Recital Studio on 31st July 2009. Tickets are now available at SISTIC. Don’t miss it!

More updates to come on Fire Fight at Power of Pop with review and interviews to come.

…still there’s more…


So far, Kevin Mathews/the Groovy People have barely done two gigs a year. Really. So how does one figure two gigs in FIVE days? Cool, huh?

First up, on Sunday, 21st June, we will playing a charity gig at St James Powerhouse, e-flyer below.


Then, on Thursday, 25th June night, we’ll be playing in front of Timbre @ The Arts House disguised as Watchmen. Poster below.

Picture 3

Hope to see ya there.

…still there’s more…



I’m not much a fan of video games though I used to be – once upon a time. So I’m pretty clueless when it comes to Guitar Hero or Rock Band or whatever. I guess as a musician, I find it all a little silly.

So now here comes the Beatles Rock Band, which according to the press release lets you live out the Beatles experience – “from the early touring days in 1963 Liverpool to the immortal, final performance on the Apple Corps rooftop, fans can follow in the band’s footsteps as they traverse the globe during the height of Beatlemania.”


All well and good but the gameplay (what a strange word to use with music!) still revolves around pressing coloured buttons on a controller shaped like a musical instrument. So personally, I don’t see the point. Released on 9.9.09 simultaneously with those much-anticipated remasters, it all just seems like a cynical ploy of Apple Corps and the surviving Beatles to put their collective hands into our pockets, during these economic depressed times.

Call me a luddite if you must but this whole video game-rock music hybrid just sounds dumb. Guess I’ll just have to wait for the Who Rock Band, where you get to smash your instruments and attack unwelcome stage intruders and the like. Now, that’s a game I could subscribe to. And what about the post-show groupie fun? Eh??



Presented by The Substation & Timbre Music

Saturday 6 June, from 6:30pm

The Substation Theatre & Timbre @ The Substation

Admission: $21 (includes one free drink) available from The Substation, and at the door or call 6332 6919


* Amateur Takes Control

* For This Cycle

* Postbox

* Silhouette

* Allura

* The Fire Fight

* Caracal

* A Vacant Affair

* Urbandub (from the Philippines)

* Nothing to Declare

* The Great Spy Experiment

* Force Vomit



“…still there’s more…”

I’m certain regular PoP visitors will be aware of my favorite tagline. A few of you might be enlightened enough to know that the line comes from International Feel, the opening song off my most beloved of Todd Rundgren’s albums, the masterpiece that is A Wizard, A True Star.

I’ve always believed that AWATS accomplished what Brian Wilson & Van Dyke Parks tried to achieve with Smile – a seamless stream-of-consciousness cross-genre concept album that looked backwards and laid the foundations for tomorrow. For a modern-day version, try the Flaming Lips’ The Soft Bulletin.

So imagine my shock when I discovered that Todd will be performing the entire AWATS album live in the USA and UK, in the coming months! The mind boggles. This is an awesome “once-in-a-lifetime” experience and I’ve got to figure out if there’s any chance at all of yours truly actually pulling it off.

In the meantime, check out the interview Todd gave with regards to the upcoming AWATS shows.

and yes…still there’s more…


Sean Boyd, partner at Fanatic Promotion, debunks the myth of a ailing music industry on Fox Business News. According to Boyd, CD sales have increased overall with too much focus on the major labels and ignoring the relative success of indie companies. Comments?


(c) 2009, Apple Corp Ltd

Apple Corps Ltd. and EMI Music have announced the release of the original Beatles catalogue, which has been digitally re-mastered for the first time, for worldwide CD release on Wednesday, September 9, 2009 (9-9-09), the same date as the release of the widely anticipated “The Beatles: Rock Band” video game.  Each of the CDs is packaged with replicated original UK album art, including expanded booklets containing original and newly written liner notes and rare photos. For a limited period, each CD will also be embedded with a brief documentary film about the album. On the same date, two new Beatles boxed CD collections will also be released.

Beatles fans (and that’s every living person on the planet who has an interest in rock music) are divided on these remasters. On the one hand, we’re happy about having the opportunity to listen to those wonderful songs in pristine digital sound (the Love album demonstrated this). On the other hand, it seems like an exercise to squeeze money from fans in less than economically viable times.

On balance, whilst I think that it’s about time that the Beatles catalogue received the deluxe re-issue treatment many lesser acts have already received many times over, I am a little concerned about the fact that fans will be asked to pay full price for 30-minute albums, from whom the record label (viz EMI) has made megabucks from fans already. Sure, you can talk about the packaging, the expanded booklets and the embedded documentaries but if this exercise was about the fans, then the discs should be priced at not more than half the usual CD prices.

Unfortunately, with EMI in dire financial straits, it will see this as a perfect opportunity to replenish its coffers with even more Beatles money. Personally, I can see myself simply purchasing the entire catalogue without too much hesitation (just look at the CD package for Abbey Road above) but I’m hoping for some common sense from Apple and EMI. Am I being too naive? What do you think, Beatles fans?

Pix (c) 2009, Apple Corps Ltd.



So far, we’ve had three jam sessions and just one performance (at the MDA Fiesta) but this little collaboration with Jon Chan that Esmond (WMUM) suggested has been working out fine for all concerned.

Today, at 10pm at the Scape Lab, we add three more songs to the 15 minute set we did at MDA Fiesta, which are basically another song by Jon (Security), a new song from me (The Secret) and a 70s cover that we’ve had loads of fun prancing around to.

I’m particularly enjoying this change of environment after about two years either playing solo acoustic or full band with the Groovy People. With Jon around, I can take a breather – a back seat if you will – and just be the rhythm guitarist/backing vocalist on his songs. Refreshing!

So hope to see as many of you guys as can make it tonight…please come up and say hello!

…yes, there’s more…



This Friday, 20th and Saturday, 21st will mark the debut of a brand new WeekendTRIP program for 2009. Now conceived as quarterly 2-day music festivals, former Baybeats organizer Wake Me Up Music has been roped in to co-produce these ambitious sonic events.


In March, the organizers in collaboration with Noise Singapore are rolling out the WeekendTRIP Noise Edition and this mini-festival has significance to me as it brings together two facets of my involvement in S-ROCK. As a musician, I will playing with Jon Chan under the WMUM banner on Friday at 10pm at the Scape Lab. As a mentor under the The Noise Apprenticeship Program, my two apprentices Nick Tan and Rachael Teo will also be performing on Saturday at 5.15pm and 6.00pm respectively at the Scape Lab as well.


This is all exciting news for S-ROCK lovers and as you can tell from the line-up below (which also includes regional acts), there is enough variety to satisfy every whim and taste. …and there’s more…

Friday, 20th March 2009
The ‘Main Stage’ @ *scapeYouth Park
The Confessions Stage @ *scape Lab
Plug & Play Stage @ OrchardCathay Cineleisure
700pm – 7.30pm
745pm – 815pm
8pm – 830pm
For This Cycle
830pm – 900pm
Blind Meets Mute (TBC)
9pm – 930pm
The Karl Maka
9.30pm – 1000pm
10pm – 1030pm
Jon Chan & Kevin Mathews
1030pm – 1115pm
Sandwich (Phillipines)
Saturday, 21st March 2009
The ‘Main Stage’ @ *scapeYouth Park
The Confessions Stage @ *scape Lab
Plug & Play Stage @ OrchardCathay Cineleisure
3pm – 4pm
Noise Workshop
‘Daniel Ong – How to present yourself on stage
430pm – 5pm
In Finite Flight (Acoustic Duo)
515pm – 545pm
Nick Tan (Acoustic)
6pm – 630pm
Rachael Teo (Acoustic)
630pm – 700pm
The Lion Story
6pm – 630pm
Azmyl Yunor (KL)
730pm – 800pm
Duxton Plains
7pm – 730pm
EN – X
830pm – 900pm
King Kong Jane
8pm – 830pm
Indus Gendi
930pm – 1015pm
9pm – 930pm
The Marilyns
1045pm – 1130pm
Bittersweet (KL)
*All Lineups subject to change without prior notice


After bringing us indie talents like Death Cab for Cutie, Stars and Ani DiFranco in the last six months, local gig organizer Greenhorn Productions now presents Rachael Yamagata, live at the Esplanade Concert Hall on 15 April 2009. 

Stay tuned for more details.