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Jul 242015
 

image001SamWillowsTakeHeartTrick

There were three emails from major labels that I received in this past week that indicates that Singapore English pop may just be turning a significant corner. Three releases from Singapore bands that have already made an impact on a pop fan base in Singapore. That is something that has not happened since… the 1960s and the 1990s?

Granted, there is not much rock ‘n’ roll evident from the new batch of popstars-in-waiting but perhaps that is a reflection of the audience’s taste more than anything else. In any case, what we have are three singles viz. “Sixty Five” by Gentle Bones, “Take Heart” from The Sam Willows and Trick’s “Some Girls” with their obligatory accompanying videos. So let’s take a look, shall we?

First off, Gentle Bones’ “Sixty Five” is a musical tie-in to the upcoming 1965 movie and is rather downbeat and dramatic amidst its lush orchestration. The video matches the somewhat sombre mood showcasing obtuse dancing and moody lighting, capturing the tone well. Look out for a cameo from producer Leonard Soosay (with cat).

Next, The Sam Willows’ “Take Heart” emphasises all the manifest strengths of this lively quartet with the video deftly highlighting energetic dancers as the song’s hybrid hipster folk/EDM hedges all bets well enough. With its bright rainbow colours, it’s seems to provide an interesting counterpoint to the Gentle Bones’ video. Coincidence or design? Mm??

Finally, “Some Girls” finds Trick hoping to emulate their American hip-hop cousins with some T&A and risque lyrics. Somewhat daring by staid Singapore standards, at least one cannot accuse Trick of not trying to provide a visual representation of the song itself. Considering how popular hip-hop is worldwide, it’s a commendable effort.

Watch the video

Taken in the context of mainstream pop, these singles can stand up to anything out there and hopefully with a certain amount of marketing muscle from the major labels involved, these pop star hopefuls will become household names in Singapore and beyond!

… still there’s more … 

Jul 182015
 

SMQ-01-sm

What can I say about Seamonster? I feel like just grabbing you, dear reader, by the throat and screaming into your ear – “BUY THE FUCKING ALBUM NOW!” and not feel any guilt about such a violent outburst at all.

But seriously folks, what can I say about Seamonster?

That this amazing band viz. Joshua Wan (keyboards), Fabian Lim (saxophone), Jase Sng (bass), Aaron Lee (drums) and Ginny Bloop (vocals) has made jazz improvisation appealing to the soul with ten tracks that beggar belief for its technical excellence and emotional resonance. Every single member is a master of his instrument but together, they form an indefinable creature – a veritable Seamonster!

You want instrumental virtuosity? You can, in spades! You want irresistible grooves? Again, there are loads to spare here.

And the icing on the cake? The absolute tipping point into pure unbridled adulation?

Ginny Bloop – an idiosyncratic front-person who is at once sexy and quirky, possessed of a unique larynx that twists and turns like some leviathan, clothed with a personality that is also tongue-in-cheek woman-child – an unstoppable force!

See what I mean? Incomprehensible babbling of a madman touched by the magic of The Steve McQueens. You have been warned!

Seamonster is available in Singapore on all major digital music platforms. Physical copies of the CD can also be ordered at www.stevemcqueens.com

… still there’s more … 

Jul 112015
 

SMQs

Another Saturday, another Singapore album launch!

Definitely, this is going to be the big one – by now The Steve McQueens are a well-oiled machine, having plied their trade in Europe already.

SingJazz Club also provides a suitable ambience for the band’s smooth soul-jazz-pop and Ginny Bloop’s on-stage antics, so a splendid time is guaranteed is all.

Not to mention that Seamonster is a stellar combination of instrumental virtuosity and Ginny’s indomitable aural attitude, so this gig practically recommends itself.

Don’t miss this. Tickets still available at the door.

SMQS launch

… still there’s more … 

Jul 102015
 

DEON - Cover

Tonight! DEON launches the superb album that is Oceans at The Substation. The lovely Theodora opens at 7.30pm!

It’s the perfect way to spend a Friday night!!

Peatix Ticket Prices: $25 for entry/ $45 for Physical CD Book & entry (Original Value $50)/ $60 for Physical CD Book, Lionheart T-Shirt & entry (Original Value $70)

Tickets at the Door: $30 for entry

Connect with DEON:
www.deontheband.com
www.facebook.com/deontheband
www.instagram.com/deontheband @deontheband
www.twitter.com/deontoh

… still there’s more … 

Jul 102015
 

Loads happening this Saturday, 11th July is you are a local music fan. Blame it partly on SG50 funding but also on renewed interest in S-ROCK. Are you ready? Here we go!

RILEK JACK RAMADHAN ACOUSTIC SESSIONS

Rilek Jack

More info

SINGAPORE STORIES – URBAN SCREENING

SingStories

Featuring Cherie X Ferry.

Checking our the TODAY feature also.

More info

PUNKED OUT! 2

PunkedOut!

More info

JONATHAN MEUR – HOW TO BUILD A KITE ALBUM LAUNCH

Meur

More info

SMQS launch

More info

SHINE FESTIVAL

SHINE Fest

More info

… still there’s more … 

Jul 102015
 

GentleBonesSixtyFive

“Sixty Five” is Gentle Bones’ major label debut single and is a track to be featured on the upcoming movie 1965.

In that context, it is suitably over-dramatic but contains sufficient elements familiar to fans.

Now available at https://itun.es/sg/m5DJ8

https://www.facebook.com/gentlebonesmusic

Jul 102015
 
Jude Young

Photo by Joel Lim

The national celebration of Singapore’s independence has brought out many diverse items, music wise. But singer-songwriter Jude Young’s “Wave of Tomorrow” and accompanying video may be the most heartfelt and straightforward thus far. The video – directed & shot by Jeremy Kieran Ng – is not fancy and lacks frills but gets the job done effectively but it is in the competent songwriting that the emotional resonance of what it means to be Singaporean in this special year is shared. No mean feat!

“Ride on this tide/We’ll fly side by side/On the waves of tomorrow/The chase starts today/With these guiding stars and/The shine from the moon so bright/So you can count on me/To keep you free
Yeah you can shout your name across the shores/Singapore”

Kudos to all involved!

https://www.facebook.com/judeyoung

Jul 082015
 

JoshuaRadin

Joshua Radin will perform live in Singapore for the first time on 4 Sep 2015 at 8.30 p.m. at Esplanade Concert Hall. Tickets at $88, $68 & $48 will be available through www.sistic.com from 9 July 2015 (internet booking starts at 9 a.m.)

Here’s a Power of Pop/Spotify playlist of what to expect from Joshua Radin come September. Enjoy!

Thanks to Greenhorn Productions for the heads up!

Jul 062015
 

Clean Bandit - Singapore Artwork

Secret Sounds Asia presents
Title: Clean Bandit – Live in Singapore
Venue: The Coliseum, Hard Rock Hotel Singapore, Resorts World Sentosa Date/Time: Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 8pm

Tickets: $58 Limited Early-Bird, $68 Standard, $88 Door Group package of 4 tickets $250
(+ $4 SISTIC booking fee per ticket)

Ticket Sales Launch Date: Monday 13 July 2015

Tickets available via SISTIC – Online (9am): www.sistic.com.sg – Tel (10am): +65 6348 5555
– In person (10am): At all authorised SISTIC agents & box offices

 

Jul 022015
 

Theodora

“Old soul” is probably an apt description of singer-songwriter Theodora’s muse.

This 18 year old has a perceptive creativity beyond her tender years with an artistic sensibility that reflects a subtle maturity. This is already painfully obvious when listening to her debut single “Lines”, written about the loss about a loved one – “I sit in silence in the memory of you”.

Now here’s a thoughtful video – lovingly crafted by director Leonard Soosay – that represents visually the emotions that “Lines” evokes, with style and finesse.

Theodora’s debut EP is planned for the end of the year – keep a close watch on that, dear readers.

In the meantime, check out the gorgeous video for “Lines”.

Purchase “Lines” from iTunes.

EXPECT AN ECLECTIC ROCK EXPERIENCE WITH THE CHINA BLUE EXPERIMENT AT BEERFEST ASIA 2015

 MUSIC  Comments Off on EXPECT AN ECLECTIC ROCK EXPERIENCE WITH THE CHINA BLUE EXPERIMENT AT BEERFEST ASIA 2015
Jun 262015
 

Screen Shot 2015-06-26 at 8.12.50 am

The China Blue Experiment describes itself as a “blues/pop fusion band with wide reaching influences, eclectic styles and troublesome personalities”, which demonstrates that if nothing else, the duo of Darren Forster and Gordon Cant has attitude in spades. Should be fun to check ’em out! Words by Darren Forster.

Why is it important for you to play in Singapore?
It represents a great opportunity to take our product to an international audience. We would like to the opportunity to (hopefully) impress the wonderful people of Singapore and beyond and would hope that we could establish ourselves in a way that means we can return regular and share our ever evolving musical experience.

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KOJI PRESENTS RAW HARD ROCKIN’ TRIBUTE TO PULP FICTION

 MUSIC  Comments Off on KOJI PRESENTS RAW HARD ROCKIN’ TRIBUTE TO PULP FICTION
Jun 252015
 

Koji

If there’s one inescapable fly in the S-ROCK ointment, it’s the lack of meaningful lyricism, the fear of exploring concepts beyond the purely emotional (the ‘affairs of the heart’ cliche). Thankfully, that is not the case with Koji’s new free track – “Mrs Mia Wallace” – which functions as a tribute to the Pulp Fiction characters famously played by Uma Thurman in the Quentin Tarantino classic.

There’s something wonderfully shambolic about the quartet’s hard rockin’ agenda – channeling Wolfmother via Led Zep – although the quality of the vocals might need sprucing up. But one cannot quibble too much with the infectious riffs that dominate “Mrs Mia Wallace” and that is one memorable take-away. Download the track for free now!

Check out the lyric video also!

Connect with Koji!

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/KojibandSG

JAKE AND THE COWBOYS SET TO CORRAL SINGAPORE MUSIC LOVERS AT BEERFEST ASIA 2015

 MUSIC  Comments Off on JAKE AND THE COWBOYS SET TO CORRAL SINGAPORE MUSIC LOVERS AT BEERFEST ASIA 2015
Jun 242015
 

JAKECOWBOYS

These pop-rockers have just the right vibe for Power of Pop! Jake and the Cowboys are the 2nd band to be featured in PoP’s SWAM coverage. Words by Jarred Wall.

Why is it important for you to play in Singapore?

Beerfest Asia 2015 will mark our first international gig, so we are extremely excited to share our music to a market that we feel are going to really enjoy our sound. Jake and the Cowboys are fresh and exciting and provide a live performance which rivals that of the best.

It also proves timely for us as we have just finished completing a successful crowd funding campaign to record our next single ‘She Said’. The response we received from our fans was fantastic and the project itself has really provided us with a new platform to engage our fans and make them feel a part of the band. It also provided us with a chance to give something back to the fans for all their support. For example, fairly soon we will be heading to one of our fans houses to do some gardening and wash their car and then after that, we will be providing an exclusive performance to a group of fans, on top of cooking them a meal! We wanted to give the fans something different and put a personal touch to it. Of course these rewards were some of the more unusual ones, fans also had the opportunity to receive signed CD’s and digital downloads of the new track. It’s now closed but feel free to check out the project at http://www.pozible.com/project/195487

After spending a few days in the studio with Joel Quartermain of well known Australian Act Eskimo Joe, we were extremely happy and proud of the final product. We see the networking opportunities that we will be exposed to in Singapore as a great opportunity to source airplay in the region and ultimately future performances down the track. We will be armed in hand with ‘She Said’ Single’s!


What do you hope to take away from the experience?

We hope to learn a few things about the Singaporean market and what the people like. Eventually our aim would be to have our music receive airplay in the region as we feel our music will be quite well suited to the people and well received.

The networking opportunities are also a great chance for us to make some crucial contacts in the region which we hope will lead to future exposure for Jake and the Cowboys. We want to make the most of the opportunity and what the city has to offer, particularly in the way of music.

Continue reading »

PERTH DUO FOREIGN ARCHITECTS TO PLAY AT BEERFEST ASIA 2015 AS PART OF SWAM

 MUSIC  Comments Off on PERTH DUO FOREIGN ARCHITECTS TO PLAY AT BEERFEST ASIA 2015 AS PART OF SWAM
Jun 232015
 

ForeignArchitects

Foreign Architects are a Perth based duo featuring singer/songwriter Matt Burke and percussionist Andrew Barnett. The duo will play Beerfest Asia 2015 (together with Singaporean and other Aussie bands) on Sunday 28th June. This is part of the musical exchange between Singapore & Western Australian music scenes which has been ongoing for the last couple of years. Thanks to Timbre Music (Beerfest organisers), we got in touch with Matt Burke/Foreign Architects for a short interview.

Why is it important for you to play in Singapore?

This is an important opportunity for us to gain international exposure and start to build a fan-base outside our home city. Singapore is a country we have always wanted to travel to and getting to bring our music to Singapore is a dream come true for us.

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POWER OF POP INTERVIEW – DEON TOH

 MUSIC  Comments Off on POWER OF POP INTERVIEW – DEON TOH
Jun 222015
 

DEON

It’s always a pleasure working with singer-songwriter Deon Toh cos the man is genuine, down to earth and serious about his art. His new album is one of the best I have heard in 2015 and thus, it was illuminating to pick his brains for the stories behind the songs. It’s really in-depth so buckle up!

What was the primary inspiration behind making Oceans a concept album?

As a songwriter, I’ve always viewed the creation of an album as the process of creating a standalone piece of work; a piece of art. I’m one of those musicians who still believe in coming up with a good 10 songs LP, and making sure that those songs make a collective statement. 

As such, I did not craft singles and slap them together, but rather, I crafted an entire album. With that intention in mind, I dedicated myself to the challenge of coming up with something magical.

No disrespect or offense to musicians who launch singles, or demos, or EPs that are just a collection of unrelated songs (there’s nothing wrong with that); on my part, this was a personal challenge to push my songwriting limits and come up with a concept album.

The theme of circles and cycles seems alien to Singapore where the seasons remain constant – so is the music a product of travelling beyond Singapore?

I traveled with the intention of personal growth. I wanted to discover more about myself and see the world, and to understand the value of coming home better. Back home, life was changing at a rapid pace, with my graduation from university, evolving relationships, and aging parents. I had constant emotional and rationality debates, epiphanies. And at the end of everything, I walked away with a deeper understanding of myself.

What was the motivation behind incorporating post-rock and ambient electronica into your pop-rock sonic agenda?

During this period, my band and I had the privilege to witness one of the best musical performances during an Iceland Airwaves showcase at Canadian Music Week. We stumbled upon singer-songwriter, Asgeir, and fell in love with his brand of music. He incorporates loads of ambient electronica, which influenced us eventually. 

The post-rock aspect came out of listening to loads of music from local band Caracal. We are huge fans of the band, and also spent a short period traveling with them, it was fun.

As for my pop-rock roots, I still listen to loads of Rachael Yamagata, Brooke Fraser, and Coldplay, which always keeps me grounded to my roots. 

Continue reading »

KAMCO MUSIC: TYPEWRITER’S INDIAN HEAD MASSAGE NOW AVAILABLE ON ALL DIGITAL DISTRIBUTION PLATFORMS

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Jun 202015
 

TypeWriter Believe

TypeWriter will be debuting new material from upcoming EP at Baybeats 2015 and will also be featuring new drummer Robin Chua (Livonia, Shelves). The band will be playing at the MIXTAPE stage on 26th June at 11pm. In the meantime, you can download/listen to their 2010 album, Indian Head Massage.

iTunes

Connect with TypeWriter https://www.facebook.com/typewriterband

… still there’s more … 

TURN TURN TURN: DEON’S SOPHOMORE EFFORT OCEANS SIGNALS A NEW SEASON FOR SINGAPORE ROCK

 MUSIC  Comments Off on TURN TURN TURN: DEON’S SOPHOMORE EFFORT OCEANS SIGNALS A NEW SEASON FOR SINGAPORE ROCK
Jun 182015
 

DEON - Cover

When one listens to Oceans, it becomes abundantly crystal clear that for singer-songwriter Deon Toh, it’s all about the music. In this digital age, Toh has gone against the grain to approach the album as a viable artistic expression, like in the days of yore. There are eleven one-word titled tracks on this, his follow-up to the well-received Antiphobic, bookended by “Circles” and “Cycles”, which speak to the impact of seasons in our lives.

There is beauty, grace and strength in compositions like “Summer”, “Fall”, “Winter” and “Spring” where Toh is able to conjure the experience of the seasons, whether it is something physical or symbolic. The over-riding emotion might be melancholy but it is not defeatist but reflective. Whether it is in the piano harmonic structures, fragile guitar arpeggios, arranged percussion, ambient soundscapes or Toh’s falsetto, there is a deliberate intent to evoke a sense of longing and yearning in the presence of natural splendour.

It is a significant achievement that Oceans is an album one can (and MUST) listen to from beginning to end and then to start all over again. A gorgeous song cycle that once again sets the bar higher for Singapore artists to emulate.

DEON launches Oceans on July 10th at the Substation. Tickets are now available from http://peatix.com/event/96846. Pre-order the album from iTunes and download the single “Summer”.

In the meantime, check out the music video for “Summer” below.

www.deontheband.com
www.facebook.com/deontheband
www.instagram.com/deontheband @deontheband
www.twitter.com/deontoh

Look out for the Power of Pop interview with Deon Toh coming soon…

DEON RELEASES SOPHOMORE EFFORT OCEANS: PRE-ORDER, MUSIC VIDEO & SINGLE NEWS

 MUSIC  Comments Off on DEON RELEASES SOPHOMORE EFFORT OCEANS: PRE-ORDER, MUSIC VIDEO & SINGLE NEWS
Jun 152015
 

DEON - Cover

DEON releases his 2nd album Oceans on 10th July.

iTunes pre-order will begin on 17th June, and physical copies of the album as well as the digital release of the album will happen on the 10th of July. A music video of first single “Summer” will also be released on 17th June on DEON’s Youtube channel.

Oceans was recorded by Leonard Soosay, and produced by DEON, Mindy Kon, and Leonard Soosay at Snakeweed Studios. The album was mastered by Scott Hull (Garbage, John Mayer, Snarky Puppy).

The album will be launched on the 10th July at the Substation.

As with DEON’s debut Antiphobic, Oceans is filled to the brim with melodic power but it’s clear that DEON has upped the ante with regards to production and arrangement as well as a conceptual thread that runs through the album. Review to come.

Connect with DEON.

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/deontheband
Twitter https://twitter.com/deontoh
Web http://www.deontheband.com/

LYDIA LOW: LIVE IN SINGAPORE JUNE 2015

 MUSIC  Comments Off on LYDIA LOW: LIVE IN SINGAPORE JUNE 2015
Jun 102015
 

LL-LiveSG

Lydia Low kicks off her Singapore tour tonight at Originals Sing @ Artistry. Joie Tan will be opening the festivities at 8.30pm. Cover charge is $10, proceeds to be shared between the artists. Lydia will also be selling CDs so please bring money!

In the meantime, you can listen to her album Wrecked till Further Notice at Spotify.

The album is also available at iTunes.

Lydia will also be playing a couple of tunes at the Beast open mic tomorrow.

Connect with Lydia
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Check out the lyric video for “Wrecked”

… still there’s more …

HOUSE OF RIOT: INCH, THE GREAT SPY EXPERIMENT & CHARLIE LIM – SINGAPORE ROCK COMES OF AGE!

 MUSIC  Comments Off on HOUSE OF RIOT: INCH, THE GREAT SPY EXPERIMENT & CHARLIE LIM – SINGAPORE ROCK COMES OF AGE!
Jun 072015
 

FullSizeRender 63

Well you turn when I talk/Run when I walk/Rise when I fall/Burn when I shiver/Smile when I frown/Go when I come around/You twist when I shout/In when I’m out/There when I’m here/Why do I bother?/Laugh when I’m down/Whine when I make a sound

I didn’t realise how much I would be affected by The Great Spy Experiment’s swan song performance until I sang along to “The Great Decay” and I lost it – the tears rolled freely and all the precious memories flooded into my mind.

One of many emotional high points of House of Riot’s ambitious concert to put Singapore indie music where it belongs – in the mainstream. How else to describe a concert at a packed out Esplanade Concert Hall where I failed to recognise the majority of the audience? This was no longer an underground movement, this was a Singapore audience doing something never done before, paying hard-earned money for SINGAPORE acts playing at arguably one of the best (and most prestigious) concert venues on the island!

FullSizeRender 57

iNCH opened the night, resplendent in a cape playing familiar tunes (“Chefalo Knot”, “The Artful Dodger” & a spine-tingling “Dear Paramour”) and a couple of new tunes (“Lyre Lyre, Hearts on Fyre” was particularly affecting). It was clear that the enormity of the night’s achievement was also weighing on iNCH as paid an emotional tribute to those who had been supporting her music since 2009. It was a victorious comeback for the petite singer-songwriter, with a new EP due in September.

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Hard to believe that the GSE are no more but all things must pass and surely, there could be no better way for this Singapore indie rock institution to say goodbye! It has been eight years since I first thrilled to their music and tonight the songs seemed stronger and grander – from “Late Nite Request” to “Class ‘A’ Love Affair” – it was an emotional farewell. It was a proper Singapore rock send-off in a venue more suited for classical music, which in itself was so symbolic. An unforgettable performance from a beloved S-ROCK band. Thank you and love always – Saiful, Fandy, Mag, Khai and Song!

FullSizeRender 73

And finally, Charlie Lim  – surely, the brightest hope for Singapore rock. Backed by the Mothership, Charlie played tracks off his hit new double EP Time/Space with aplomb and finesse. Personally, I favour the folk-rock majesties of “Light Break In” (kudos to the string section of Lisa Haryono, Josh Wei and Kim Eun Hyung), “Choices” and “Bitter” where Charlie’s heartfelt lyrics are expressed in rustic tones but my new favourite “I Only Tell the Truth” (this time with Charlie on keyboards) also provided a memorable ‘lump-in-throat’ moment. Triumphant!

The audience stayed behind as Riot chief honcho Mike See took time to appreciate everyone who played a part in the magnificent venture. It was heart-warming to see a primarily mainstream audience giving a standing ovation to a group of Singapore indie artists (and I include managers and crew into that description) and receiving the deserved recognition that has for so long been denied. Mike rightfully described the success of the event as historical – those of us who remember the scene of a decade ago would have never imagined the scenario which unfolded before our very eyes. But tonight on June 6th 2015, Singapore rock came of age.

… still there’s more … 

 

KILL TEDDY EVOKES 90S ALT-ROCK WITH CAROLINE SINGLE

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Jun 042015
 

Screen Shot 2015-06-04 at 10.31.18 am

I am not being facetious when I say that much of modern pop is not even music anymore but rather a combination of beats and sounds calculated to appeal to the lowest common denominator. But thankfully, there are bands out there who ignore what generally passes for pop nowadays and latch on to a style that might not be hip or cool to the kids today but remains true to their own artistic sensibility.

One such band is Kill Teddy who described themselves as a alternative/grunge band and hope to revive the Seattle grunge sound of the 90s. Well, the new single “Caroline” is certainly in the right direction with its anthemic chorus, crunchy guitars and off-the-wall CSNY bridge (with Beach Boys reference?). Check it out!

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GEEK OUT! SONNY LIEW SUPER-IMPOSES THE HISTORY OF COMICS OVER THE ART OF CHARLIE CHAN HOCK CHYE TO CREATE A MASTERPIECE

 ARTS, COMICS  Comments Off on GEEK OUT! SONNY LIEW SUPER-IMPOSES THE HISTORY OF COMICS OVER THE ART OF CHARLIE CHAN HOCK CHYE TO CREATE A MASTERPIECE
Jun 032015
 

cchc_cover_epigram_20march2015

Who is this Singapore comic book artist Charlie Chan Hock Chye that was able to channel the history of comics through the critical Singaporean events of the last 60-70 odd years? Well, he does exists… BUT only as a figment of artist Sonny Liew’s fecund imagination.

So yes, The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye is an imaginary tale presented within the context of Singapore history but an imaginary tale nonetheless. It is an artfully constructed “What If” tale and encourages the reader to imagine – “what if Singapore had an legitimate comic book history”. What if, indeed.

Thus, though couched in biographical terms as some kind of historical document – the story of Charlie Chan Hock Chye is a fantasy, a fairy tale where the history of comic books unfolded in decidedly Singaporean circumstances.

So while everyone (including the authorities) seem hellbent on treating the story as some kind of political commentary with the potential to undermine the status quo, a more accurate understanding would be to perceive The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye as a tribute to comic books and to Singapore itself.

In that sense, I would state categorically that the true purpose of this ambitious graphic novel would fly over most Singaporean heads and by the story’s denouement would leave the same disappointed that it was not the middle finger to the Government that it had been perceived to be.

With references to Osamu Tesuka, Harvey Kurtzman, Windsor McKay, Eagle, Pogo, MAD, Spider-Man and the like, it would be abundantly clear to a comic book geek what Sonny is trying to achieve here. And the manner in which he is able to weave these references into the Singaporean narrative is sheer genius.

My particular favourite moment is where Sonny channels Philip K Dick by paying homage to Dick’s alternate reality opus The Man in the High Castle (google it for details) to imagine a Singapore where history was altered somewhat from reality. Again, the shock of seeing this alternate reality is probably worth the entire price of the book!

And what about the artwork itself? Any description I would give would not do it justice, surely. Reflecting the stylistic changes in comic book history, Sonny handles each different ‘genre’ like a master, while keeping his own artistic identity intact. No mean feat! A wonderfully immersive visual experience with an eye for detail that will blow you away.

In the final analysis, I will not mince my words – The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye is a masterpiece. Nuff said.

Official Site

PoPTV – SINGAPORE ROCK RECOMMENDATIONS

 MUSIC  Comments Off on PoPTV – SINGAPORE ROCK RECOMMENDATIONS
Jun 012015
 

S-ROCK

Regular visitors to Power of Pop will be aware that my definition of “pop” is pretty wide. But of course, in the context of modern pop (read: vacuous) , that definition becomes somewhat irrelevant for my purposes. Also, if I say “rock ‘n’ roll”, most people will think of the 50s (read: dated) and so, sometimes I need to be uber-specific and say “country-folk-pop-rock” to describe the type of pop music that I love. Hope that clarifies. From that perspective, I wanted to share very specifically, the bands and artists in Singapore whom I feel fit that particular bill and hope that you’d discover some new music to love as well.

CHEATING SONS – JEFFERSON (LIVE)

Though still unreleased, this country-folk masterpiece always resonates with me whenever the band plays it – which in my view is not often enough!

Pick up the new Cheating Sons album from Bandcamp.

HANGING UP THE MOON – THE DIVERS

Sean Lam (aka Hanging Up the Moon) somewhat resists any attempt to associate his wonderful music with that of the past (which I appreciate) but seriously folks, this gorgeous music is highly evocative of early 70s folk-rock. And what is the problem with that??? Beautiful.

Available at iTunes!

Continue reading »