ASSEMBLE HEAD IN SUNBURST SOUND When Sweet Sleep Returned (Tee Pee)

Psychedelic rock from San Francisco? Hurm. It’s not hard to imagine stoner fans of the Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead getting off to When Sweet Sleep Returned back in the heady 60s. But what about in 2010?

Well, I’m not sure whether this uncanny revocation by AHISS is tribute, pastiche or drop-dead serious. I mean, after the Paisley Underground movement faded away, it seems a little pointless to be this reverential in re-creating this particular genre, which has already been totally well-mined in the past by the likes of Rain Parade, the Soft Boys and more lately, the Jupiter Affect.

Don’t get me wrong, I love psychedelic rock if executed properly and with attitude but with AHISS, it just seems a tad redundant. For fans only.

Official Site | Myspace

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Paraguay 0 Japan 0 (Paraguay win 5-3 on pens) | Spain 1 Portugal 0

Well, it has reached the stage when one error might cost your nation progress in the World Cup. This was certainly true for the final two Round of 16 games last night. Paraguay and Japan cancelled each other out  and could not be separated after 120 minutes of committed football. So instead, the dreaded penalty shootout did the job and sadly for Japan’s Komano, his miss was the deciding one and Paraguay are in the quarter-finals for the first time in their history. I hate penalty kick shootouts, it is probably one of the least satisfying ways to win a match but in the absence of anything better, it is a necessary evil. *Sigh*

On to the all-Iberian clash and once again, one mistake was all it took. This time, Portuguese coach Carlos Queiroz replaced Almeida (who had been a serious threat to the Spanish centre backs the entire game up to that point) with the rather flaccid Danny! At the same time, Llorante was brought in for the anonymous Torres for the Spanish and the match was turned on its head. Suddenly, Portugal’s offense was blunted but (more crucially), Llorante (from unfancied Atletico Bilbao) unsettled the Portuguese defence (especially Carvalho) and inexplicably, Spanish dangerman Villa was allowed to ghost in to net his 4th goal of the competition, at the second attempt! Even with half an hour left, it did not look like the Portuguese had any ideas to bring the game back on level terms, especially with Ronaldo particularly out of touch.

In the end, Spain deserved to edge it – coach Del Bosque’s decisive action in replacing Torres (coupled with the aforementioned Queiroz’s tactical error) swung the game their way. However, I must say that I was disgusted with the cheating tricks played by Spain’s left back Capdevilla as his constant simulation resulted in Portugal’s Costa receiving an unmerited red card. Not the kind of antics anyone wants to see in this World Cup (remember Kaka’s sending off?).

Congrats to Spain and Paraguay for making it to the Quarter-Finals!


I must warn you that if you are easily upset and offended, then DO NOT watch this troubling documentary concerning sexual abuse and pedophilia within the Roman Catholic Church. The documentary initially focuses on one priest, Father Oliver O’Grady, who agreed to be interviewed by journalist/filmmaker Amy Berg. However, as the story unfolds it becomes evident that the incidences of the sexual abuse and the perpetrators are being covered up and protected by the higher echelons of the Catholic Church!

O’Grady, now residing in his native Ireland and receiving a healthy pension from the Church, recounts his offenses in a genial, sometime flippant manner which belie the severe nature of his acts. It is estimated that he abused more than a hundred children, with his youngest victim being a 9 month old baby. Like I said, disgusting!

As monstrous as O’Grady is – and believe me, he is – he is merely symptomatic of a hideous conspiracy permeating the entire Catholic Church in harboring these sexual offenders in the name of self-interest, abandoning and exposing the children to the lusts and desires of these sick individuals.

Quite often, it is tough to watch the victims (and their families) relive the horrendous chapters which have scarred their lives forever. The Catholic Church has failed in living up to their responsibilities to the children in its care, it is so incomprehensible (and reprehensible) that the lives of the victims were so callously treated.

Filmmaker Berg has certainly succeeded in raising the ire of anyone who watches Deliver Us From Evil. However, the film ends rather pathetically as two of the victims are turned away by the Vatican (maybe that was the point being made by Berg). The frightening thing is that despite the obvious evidence, this abuse may be allowed to continue in Catholic churches as Catholic leaders are unwilling to expose the Church to a legal accounting. Truly disturbing.

Buy at Amazon


Is it July already? Yes folks it’s about time for the Baybeats 2010 hype machine to kick into gear! I’m not going to say too much in this post, just to give you a heads up that in the coming weeks till Baybeats 2010, your best source for information, news, lowdown and cool stuff will be here at Power of Pop or at my other blogs viz. S-ROCK and Power of Pop (confused yet?). Heh.

Suffice to say that from 20 – 22 August, bands from around the world (and Singapore of course) will be playing for your enjoyment (for FREE) at Baybeats 2010 and the anticipation begins now.

In the meantime, check out my reports from Baybeats 2007, to get you in the mood.

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Summary

…still there’s more…

Baybeats 2010 Official Site



In the 80s, thanks to popular LPs like So and Us, Peter Gabriel finally achieved status of rock superstar. As much as I do consider So and Us to be good albums, for me personally, the best musical period for Gabriel was between 1977 to 1982, when he released four eponymous albums.

I first came across Gabriel when he was the lead singer of the progressive rock outfit Genesis. Gabriel quit Genesis in 1976 and embarked on a solo career. In the next five years, he would produce some of the finest rock music ever.

Now also referred to as Car, Gabriel’s debut is a powerful one featuring memorable tracks like Moribund the Burgermeister, Solsbury Hill (video below), Modern Love, Humdrum and perennial live fave, Here Comes the Flood.

A year later, Gabriel released his sophomore effort (often called Scratch), produced by King Crimson’s Robert Fripp. Fripp’s influence is evident in the use of his patented Frippertronic effects in Exposure. Not quite as strong as the album before and after it, Scratch still contains On the Air, D.I.Y. (video below), White Shadow, Animal Magic and the aforementioned Exposure.

Easily one of my favourite albums of all time, Gabriel’s 3rd album (or Melt) was co-produced by Gabriel and renowned 80s producer Steve Lillywhite, and the muscular sound being the main result (the influence of post-punk is obvious). The songs on Melt are probably among Gabriel’s best known – Games Without Frontier (video below) and Biko (a tribute to South African martyr Steven Biko) – along with such classics as Intruder, Not One of Us, And Through the Wires, Family Snapshot etc. The entire album is essential, nuff said!

Not as accessible as Melt, Gabriel’s 4th LP (or Security) is an ambitious, experimental song cycle where Gabriel’s interest in world music flowers and blooms. Memorable tracks litter the LP, including The Rhythm of the Heat, San Jacinto (video below), I Have the Touch and Shock the Monkey.

Check out the Peter Gabriel store at Amazon.



Netherlands 2 Slovakia 1 | Brazil 3 Chile 0

Looks like another promising World Cup clash between the Netherlands and Brazil is in store. Whereas in previous World Cups, both countries have been known for their free flowing football and perhaps defensive naivety, things are very different in 2010. Nowadays both teams can boast an attitude of steel that saw them ease past their opponents in the Round of 16, keeping their attacking prowess in reserve till the opportune time.

In the first game, the 2-1 scoreline flattered Slovakia somewhat as for most of the match, the Slovakians looked bereft of ideas on how to break down the Dutch rearguard. As it is, the early goal by Arjen Robben (see above) meant that the Dutch did not have to chase the game and relied on an (unnatural) defensive posture. With Slovakians committing men forward it was inevitable that one of the sporadic Dutch breaks would be exploited and true enough, Wesley Sneijder put the Slovakians out of their misery in the 84th minute. Vittak’s injury time penalty was almost an afterthought and the final whistle blew once he netted.

Over at Ellis Park, the mighty Brazil gave an efficient all-round performance to dispatch the Chileans comfortably. It was a solid and professional display from the Brazilians, who are ominously (for their future opponents) coming into good form at the right time. The Chileans tried their best to get back in the game after Juan’s towering headed goal from a corner in the 34th minute but were sucker-punched mere minutes later by the combination of Robinho, Kaka and Fabiano with the latter finishing with aplomb (see above). It was hard to imagine Chile coming back from that blow and indeed they found the Brazilian defense resolute (marshaled brilliantly by skipper Lucio) in the second period. By the time Robinho made it three (after great individual work by Ramires) on the hour mark, the contest was over.

Together with the Argentina-Germany clash, the Netherlands-Brazil encounter will be one of the highlights of an interesting quarter-final round.


Toy Story continues to be the king of the computer animated films with its third (and final) installment which, while doing justice to the previous installments, bids a fond farewell to these beloved characters with respect, love and common sense.

Common sense? Yes, you’ll be surprised at how many films get their endings totally wrong because of a lack of common sense. But anyways…

It’s one last adventure for Woody, Buzz and the rest of the gang as with Andy now 17 and leaving home for college, they inadvertently end up at Sunnyside Daycare, where things are not quite as they seem.

With the sort of deft ease that is a trademark of Pixar, Toy Story 3 is told with tenderness, excitement, sadness and loads of fun. I’m always amazed at how the Pixar films are truly all-ages affairs and it’s no different with Toy Story 3. Although towards the end, I was wondering how the movie would conclude without traumatizing young children all around the world. Heh.

Pixar achieves this fine balance by not insulting the intelligence of its audience whether they be 10 or 50 years old. There are numerous colorful and thrilling situations for the young and knowing movie references for the old to savor and enjoy. By now, the Star Wars references are usually the ones to giggle to, see if you can spot them. Heh.

So its goodbye to the Toy Story movie franchise, certainly one of the most successful (both critically and commercially) of all time. One that will definitely stand the test of time.

Toy Story 3 is out in the cinemas now.

Check out the Pixar Page at Amazon



Germany 4 England 1 | Argentina 3 Mexico 1

They say that justice is blind. Well, based on last night’s games, so are World Cup linesmen! Right. Before I embark on my little rant, let me preface it by stating categorically that Germany deserved to win – probably not by 3 goals – but they had enough skill, class, pace and guile to outfox the clueless England defensive “system” to get the result. England were poor and the lion’s share of the blame must fall on Fabio Capello. But I’ll come to that later.

Now both of last night’s games were “infected” by crucial decisions by linesmen. In England’s case, the wiping off of a legitimate goal by Frank Lampard when the score was 2-1 to the Germans. For the Mexicans, Carlos Tevez quite clearly headed into the goal from an offside position but the “goal” was allowed to stand by the incompetent officials. Score? 0-0.

Now, remember that moment in Back to the Future, where Marty McFly inadvertently caused his parents not to get together and how that resulted in his fading away from existence itself? Well, its all cause and effect, innit? Had Lampard’s effort been recognized, England would have pulled back a two-goal deficit – very much against the run of play – and they would have been flying. Who knows? They might have scored a third before half time and the Germans would have had to chase the game. As it was, England had to do so in the second half and when caught on the break, the flaws of Gareth Barry, John Terry, Glenn Johnson and Matthew Upson were easily exploited.

Even the German hero Muller admitted that the disallowed goal was a turning point – “Of course, we had some luck with Lampard’s effort,” he reflected. “We knew we had to seize the opportunity with both hands. We got the stroke of luck and we knew we couldn’t give it away.” Naturally, he also added that he felt that it was justice for the 1966 World Cup Final – where a dubious Geoff Hurst goal was given, despite German protests that the ball had never crossed the line, and England won 4-2.

Does that mean England deserved to win or force the game to penalty kicks? Probably not – but it would have been closer in the second half than how it ultimately turned out. Some may argue that the injustice should have spurred England to fight tooth and nail to reclaim what was rightfully theirs. Sadly, with players off-color especially Wayne Rooney (who has looked burned out in the tournament) and Capello’s strange insistence on relying on the lumbering Heskey than the in-form Crouch upfront, that was not likely to happen.

So yet another World Cup where England exit, tails between their legs. Fabio Capello has to go and perhaps Roy Hodgson installed to bring back some pride and respect to this pathetic England team. There is too much obvious player power in the England setup with the likes of Lampard and Rooney undroppable no matter how badly they were playing. And will people now acknowledge that John Terry is not a world class defender? Don’t get me started on Jamie Carragher or Matthew Upson, either please. England need to wipe the slate clean and begin afresh for the Euro qualifiers.

But at least England did not surround and harass/abuse the officials when their goal was disallowed. The Mexicans were not quite so gracious about the offside “goal” that Tevez scored. Again, Mexico probably deserved to lose but questions will be raised – what if? By the time Mexico recovered to pull one back (scored by the impressive Man Utd recruit Javier Hernandez), they were 3 goals down. A mere consolation really. Mexico were obviously rattled by the decision and a horrendous defensive error allowed Higuain in for his 4th goal of the competition before Tevez blasted a beauty of a cracker into the top corner of Mexico’s goal to effectively finish off the tie.

FIFA and the officials must be pleased as punch that prima facie the WRONG decisions were NOT crucial in the final analysis because I am certain that FIFA will continue to ignore claims for video technology and remain in the dark ages. Hopefully, there are no more such further incidents in the upcoming games as it really does leave a bad taste in a football fan’s mouth.

Argentina v Germany in the quarter-finals, a mouth watering prospect!


As promised, we are back with a couple of interesting new music videos.

NETHERFRIENDS Brett Easton Ellis Novel (off new album, Barry and Sherry)

OK GO End Love

BLACK MOUNTAIN Old Fangs (off new album, Wilderness Heart)

If you’d like to be featured on PoP TV, get in touch – info(at)powerofpop(dot)com.



Welcome to the knockout stage of the World Cup 2010, where anything can happen but quite usually cagey, defensive tactics and penalty kick shootouts, if history is any gauge. And I feared the worst, when the Koreans blundered defensively to give Ajax striker Suarez an open goal opportunity in the 7th minute which he did not spurn. From then on, for some reason, the Uruguayans decided to close up shop and wait for the final whistle! Yes, I know winning is important but we Singaporeans paid expensive cable fees to entertained, dammit! Kudos to Koreans who made a game of it and a long hour later, three Uruguayan defenders went up to head the same ball and inadvertently set up Bolton’s Lee Chung-Yong to nod past an onrushing Muslera.

Game on for the last 20 minutes and maybe extra time? It was looking good. Unfortunately for Korea, their defensive frailties came to the fore again, although to be fair, no goalkeeper on the planet would have saved Suarez’s brilliant swerving shot which propelled Uruguay into the quarter-finals. Korea could (and should) have equalized through Lee Dong-Gook in the closing minutes but it was not to be and Uruguay are through.

USA 1 GHANA 2 (aet)

The Americans have been the comeback kings of the tournament and to their immense credit they pulled back the remaining African nation to 1-1, after sustained pressure in the 2nd half through Landon Donovan’s 62nd minute penalty. Kevin Prince Boating had given the Black Stars an early lead in the 5th minute from range and Ghana had been in control of most of the 1st half. But the Americans fought back hard and were certainly the better team when the referee signaled for extra time. Sadly, for USA they could not complete the comeback, due to a moment of individual brilliance from Gyan, fending off two American defenders before slamming the ball past a helpless Tim Howard. This time there was no reply from USA and so Ghana is now (deservedly) only the third African nation to ever make it to the quarter-finals, with a good chance of being the first ever in the semis.


Sony Music is pleased to announce the CD & digital release of “Earth, Wind & Fire: The Greatest Hits” on July 19th, ahead of the band’s UK Arena Tour from July 20th.

Between 1977 and 1982, Earth, Wind & Fire formed their legacy as one of the most important and influential funk and R&B bands of the 20th century.  During this period they scored 11 UK Top 40 hits, including the top-5 classics “September”, “Boogie Wonderland”, “After The Love Has Gone” and “Let’s Groove.” Furthermore, they are officially the biggest selling funk and R&B group in U.S. recording history, with over 90 million records sold.

For further info about “The Greatest Hits” album, click here.

Earth, Wind & Fire, featuring original members Verdine White (bass) , Philip Bailey (lead vocals)  and Ralph Johnson (drums), will undertake a UK arena tour that includes  Manchester MEN Arena (Tues 20th July), Birmingham NIA (Wed 21st July), and London O2 Arena (Thurs 22nd July).  Ticket Hotline: 0844 88 9991,

For further info about Earth, Wind & Fire’s July UK Tour – click here.



Group G: Brazil 0 Portugal 0 | North Korea 0 Ivory Coast 3

Group H: Chile 1 Spain 2 | Switzerland 0 Honduras 0

Not a great night for World Cup football as security of qualification took precedence over the playing of “beautiful game”. This malady even afflicted Brazil, as the Samba Boys played it safe against former colonial masters, Portugal, in a bad-tempered scrappy game. The scoreless draw ensured passage to the next round whilst North Korea and Ivory Coast were sent packing.

Over in Group H, the excitement of two attacking minded teams viz Spain and Chile made for an intriguing encounter till the last ten minutes when both teams were aware that the Swiss were being held scoreless by Honduras. That final result pushed both Spain and Chile into the knockout stage, whilst the Swiss must be wondering what went wrong after starting so well against the Spanish.

That’s it, group stages down and dusted and so begins the nerve-rattling knockout phase where proficiency in penalty shootouts becomes of prime importance. With France and Italy eliminated, and with Brazil and Spain topping their respective groups, the Brazil-Spain final is very much on. All remains to be seen…


*SCAPE’s launch was one of excitement and anticipation, with events in the previous months leading up to it. With a myriad of activities leading up to it, the arrival of the launch was worth the wait.

From popular up-and-coming musicians from our community to the headliners MAE, there was a smorgasbord of musical genres suited for everyone. With three venues for different genres of music spread over 2 days, there was something for everyone.

I went on the first day and Postbox, The Fire Fight (playing their last show) and MAE played at the Playspace, which was a large area behind the main building.

There was a big crowd by the the Postbox started their set, which was a bit surprising since it was around dinnertime. Postbox are among one of my favourite up-and-coming bands whose music is catchy, fun but edgy at the same time. They played songs off their self-titled EP and as expected, it garnered positive responses from the audience.

Once again, The Fire Fight had help from their friends, familiar faces like Amanda (keys), Jon Chan (vocals/tambourine/dancing), Angel (vocals) and Matt (vocals). It was a fun set to watch, with Jon Chan dancing around while playing the tambourine as the band played what would be their last set in more than a year. I wasn’t that thrilled, sad in fact, but the leaven trait I found was that despite it being their last set, they still played with the same zeal and passion they’ve always had, and that was translated in the positive response from the crowds that were singing and dancing along to their tunes.

MAE, who were the band most people came for, played songs off their various albums, and by that time, everyone was on a high, with the same intensity and energy that came with any popular International band playing here. Their live performances are amazing and their music was really good despite the technical difficulties, which didn’t stop the audience from having fun singing along to their songs. I really liked Dave Elkins’s vocals live so it was definitely an amazing experience hearing him sing with the band live.

*SCAPE’s a great venue, and I really like how it’s a place where youths can come together to do social activities and have fun. The only gripe I have is the inconsistency of the sound at venues, which is amazing right up front but muddy anywhere else.

Nonetheless, congratulations to *SCAPE for the grand opening of their new venue! We look forward to more exciting events from you!

(Rebecca Lincoln)



Black Sabbath. A name synonymous with heavy metal. It’s probably difficult to imagine any modern-day metal band that does not owe its origin to the band that hailed from Birmingham, UK. Forty years ago with their sophomore album, Paranoid, the journey began for this legendary band.

The story behind Paranoid is the focus of this latest installment in the excellent rockumentary series, Classic Albums. With all the attendant backlash that Black Sabbath has faced in its long history (especially of promoting evil and Satanic themes), its rather revealing to see guitarist Tony Iommi, bassist Geezer Butler, drummer Bill Ward and vocalist Ozzy Osbourne as ordinary blokes who had the very good fortune of making music that clicked with a new generation of rock music fans.

For anyone who has viewed a Classic Albums rockumentary, the approach is familiar and time-tested: interview with band members, producers, engineers, managers and knowledgeable commentators, musical demonstrations by band members and (perhaps my favorite section) a privileged hearing of the master tapes with emphasis on specific parts of classic songs, in this case, Iron Man, War Pigs and the title track (a #1 single at the time!)

Absolutely essential for metal fans and scholars of the classic rock period. Next up – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ classic Damn the Torpedoes!

Buy at Amazon


The region has been buzzing ever since the preliminary line-up had been announced by Midas Promotions, organizers of SINGfest 2010. And no wonder as the following big names will definitely be appearing.

KATY PERRY (pix by Emma Summerton)

Singer-songwriter Perry has already sold 5 million albums and should appeal to mainstream pop lovers. And do you think she’ll bring Russell Brand along for the ride? The mind boggles…


Little introduction required for the rap superstar with the big mouth. Hip hop fans will lap this up.


This one’s for the indie-alt rock kids as this arena-rock trio (fronted by sometimes actor, Jared Leto) will be coming with a new album – This is War – to promote.

As for the SMASHING PUMPKINS, despite the organizers’ assertion that the original line up (i.e. Billy Corgan, James Iha, D’arcy Wretzky and Jimmy Chamberlin) will be playing in Singapore, over at the Pumpkins official site, Corgan has confirmed that he will be touring with guitarist Jeff Schroeder, drummer Mike Byrne and new bassist Nicole Fiorentino. In light of this, Midas Promotions will have to clarify their statement as soon as possible as obviously the target audience for the Pumpkins (kids who grew up in the 90s) will not enjoy having their intelligence insulted.

That said, the organizers have cannily brought in IAN BROWN as well, which should please fans of the 90s band The Stone Roses, which Brown fronted. Also included in the SINGfest line-up lesser known names like DIANE BURCH, HAIL THE VILLAIN and ORIANTI.

Questions remain regarding the massive headliner to be announced – which may affect the pricing of the show still. Jay-Z has been rumoured to be the one but that sounds like a musical clash with Kanye West – two rap superstars on the same tiny red dot. Hurm.

We will update you on the juicy details as they come in…

Tickets available at SISTIC.



Group E: Japan 3 Denmark 1 | Holland 2 Cameroon 1

Group F: Slovakia 3 Italy 2 | Paraguay 0 New Zealand 0

How did BOTH finalists from the 2006 World Cup end up bottom of their respective groups? For France, it was internal strife that did them in and for the Italians, the failure to replace aging players proved too much in the final analysis. Famously noted to be slow starters in the past, the Italians could not deliver when crunch time came and the unfancied Slovakians pierced the vaunted Italian rearguard three times to record a memorable victory. Italy, like France, will not be missed and that says a lot for the new World Cup order.

Over in Group E, Japan impressed against the Danes, scoring two superb free kick goals (from Honda and Endo) and proved that Asian teams are on the rise indeed. Although held in Africa, it is the African teams who have disappointed in the World Cup as only Ghana has made it through to the next round. Cameroon could not even get a consolation point from the Dutch and their toothlessness in front out of goal came back to bite them again.

After a tentative start, World Cup 2010 is now promising to be one of the most exciting of recent memory. Hopefully, the knockout phase brings more thrills and spills for football fans.



Group C: Slovenia 0 England 1 | Algeria 0 USA 1

Group D: Ghana 0 Germany 1 | Serbia 1 Australia 2

As a England fan, I was relieved that England managed to scrape 1-0 past a starkly inferior Slovenian side but even as the full-time whistle blew, over in the USA-Algeria game, Landon Donovan scored a late injury time to put the Americans in pole position in the group and consign the English to a second round encounter with the winner of Group D. Which as turns out is Germany, who defeated the Ghanaians rather fortuitously, it must be said. A mouth-watering prospect when one considers the great England-Germany World Cup matches of the past.

As a Spurs fan, I was pleased that it was Jermain Defoe who was England’s hero on the day, hopefully (for Defoe) erasing the terrible injustice of being left out of the 2006 squad due to the inclusion of the 16 year old Theo Walcott. Notably it was from a pin point cross delivered by James Milner in the true English style. England probably deserved to increase the scoreline with Rooney and Gerrard going close but Defoe’s goal proved decisive.

I must applaud the fighting spirit of the Americans once again, as they rescued their World Cup dreams, seconds away from elimination. The USA team never gave up and got their reward in the dying seconds of the game. The Ghana-USA match up will also be intriguing.

As for the Aussies and the Serbians, although they are out of the World Cup, both teams did their country proud and ultimately went down fighting (unlike say, the spoilt French brats – certainly the worst team in the competition.At least the Algerians played with pride, ironic when you realize the bulk of the Algerians are French-born!)



Why is Tom Petty such a cool cat? Because first and foremost, Tom Petty is a fan. Listening to his considerably impressive oeuvre, it is clear that he has assimilated all his favourite bands/artists (Dylan, the Beatles, the Byrds, the Kinks, Hendrix, the Stones, the Band) and concocted his very own psychedelic-folk-rock-country-blues style.

Mojo is Petty’s 12th album with the Heartbreakers and the first since 2002’s controversial The Last DJ. With Petty turning 60 (!) in October this year, Mojo sounds like the work of an assured master, assisted by the best sidesmen around viz. Mike Campbell (guitars) and Benmont Tench (keyboards).

The 15 tracks on Mojo hearken back to the heady late 60s, even as bands/artists began to throw off the fanciful effects of LSD and returned to the roots of American rock music. Thus, electrified blues-rock is the prominent direction here in songs like Jefferson Jericho Blues, Running Man’s Bible, I Should Have Known It, Takin’ My Time and Lover’s Touch.

However, Petty’s vaunted classic rock eclecticism is still very much evident in tracks like the psych-jazz workouts of First Flash of Freedom, Dylan-Young folk-rocking Trip to Pirates Cove, the sweet rock ‘n’ roll jivin’ Candy, the country-folk American beauty of No Reason To Cry, the rasta vibe of Don’t Pull Me Over and the wonderfully epic Beatlesque Ksoul-blues closer Good Enough.

Call me an old fart if you like (but never boring!) but this gloriously retro-delic album represents all that is precious about our rock music. Long may you run, Tom.

Buy at Amazon


Breaking news from Midas Promotions

Event Name: SINGfest 2010

Venue: Fort Canning Park

Dates: Tuesday 3rd August, Wednesday, 4th August, Thursday, 5th August

Time: From 6.00pm

Doors are open at 5pm

Line-up: Katy Perry, Kanye West, Wonder Girls, Orianthi, Smashing Pumpkins, Diane Birch, 30 Seconds to Mars, Ian Brown, Hail the Villain and more.

More acts will be announced. Log on to for updates.

Ticket Prices: From $175 per day via via SISTIC.

We understand that one more headliner is to be confirmed and apparently is the biggest act of the bunch. In addition, one or two local bands/artists may be added to the bill as well.


Friday nights at Home Club have recently been associated with relaxed nights of great music and amazingly talented bands. For the fourth installment of Identite, held every fortnight, the lineup comprised of The Sallys, Lovejets and Moods.

The Sallys are no stranger to our music community, having launched an EP, Oh Sally, in 2005. In 2008, they released their debut full length album, Fairytale – An Unlikely Story at the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre.

Their latest track has been getting airplay on Ria 89.7FM and with a string of gigs under their belts, including Baybeats 2007, it’s no wonder there was a small turnout that grew as the night progressed.

Their music is perfect for evenings out with friends, with their Ska influences that draw listeners in and lyrics that linger long after the songs have ended. Their songs are catchy and they played songs in Malay and English, both of which were well-received by the audience.

It’s hard not to smile when the Lovejets came on and play their infections tunes to a crowd of eager listeners. It’s hard not to get drawn in, especially with their toe-tapping music riffs and heart-pounding drum beats. Couple that with smooth vocals and you have music guaranteed to get even the most conservative listener smiling to their music. The only thing missing were dancing people, although I’m pretty certain there were those inwardly dancing. I know I was!

Moods would have to be my favourite band of the night, ended the night with downtempo set comprising of original compositions and a cover from Portishead. While bands are known to be conscious of how they look on stage, Sabrina, their vocalist chose to immerse herself in the music, singing with her eyes closed and letting the emotions of the songs radiate. I haven’t heard them in awhile so I enjoyed their set and I look forward to catching them play at more shows in future.

(Text and Picture by Rebecca Lincoln)

The Sallys Myspace
Lovejets Myspace
Moods Myspace



Group A: France 1 South Africa 2 | Uruguay 1 Mexico 0

Group B: Greece 0 Argentina 2 | Nigeria 2 South Korea 2

Drama! The final matches in Groups A & B decided the four teams who would progress into the round of 16 and the four others who would be left behind. In Group A, South Africa’s sentimental defeat of the hapless France would turn out to be a hollow victory as an inferior goal difference denied them second place in the group. That said, the French collapse in this competition is nothing short of scandalous with team spirit in tatters. The rather disgraceful sight of outgoing French coach Raymond Domenech refusing to shake the hand of his South African counterpart Carlos Alberto Parreira at the final whistle, merely confirmed the depths that the French team had plumbed.

Personally, I would argue that this end result is justice for Henry’s handball against the Irish and for the political games the French players decided to engage in with Domenech. For a country blessed with such talented players, it is criminal that they chose to act like prima donnas, disgracing their fans, country and flag with juvenile behavior. Whereas, the hosts South Africans played with heart and verve to at least go down fighting in front of their own passionate fans. So I got my predictions totally wrong about this group as Uruguay and Mexico go through.

As for Group B, despite fielding a weakened side, Diego Maradona’s Argentina still dominated proceedings although the Greeks were happy to concede possession, as they usually do, hoping to score from a counter attacking break. It may have taken a longer time, but finally the Argentineans broke down the Greek resistance and earned a deserved 2-0 win which confirmed their 100% record so far. I must say that I truly dislike teams like Greece who have no qualms about playing negative anti-football but was well pleased that their destructive tactics bore no fruit. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

I’m sure all Asia (bar North Korea) rejoiced at South Korea’s qualification for the next round. The South Koreans clearly are too defensively naive to survive beyond the second round and if not for some astonishing misses from the Nigerian strikers (especially Yakubu!), would have been taking the early flight back to Seoul. That said, both teams’ gung ho style made for enthralling viewing, including unintentionally humorous moments starring those comedic Nigerian forwards. So 1 out of 2 predictions right here with South Korea surprising the more fancied Greeks and Nigerians.

May the drama continue!


Our music community has a lot of gems yet to discover, which was something I went out in search for on a Sunday evening. The gig was held at Blackhole 212, and it was an interesting experience. I really liked the 3 bands whose sets I caught, and it left me craving for more.

Arajua, with influences like Radiohead, were impressive. Their music is ambient and fluid, with the use of electronic effects, keyboards and delicate musical craftsmanship. If you listen carefully, there are traces of parts of songs that sound similar to B-Quartet. They’re a great band to catch live and their stage presence is impressive. Hopefully I’ll get to catch them again at future shows.

Within Absence, whose lyrics cover everyday life and experiences, has the potential to reach a wider audience with hard work and experimentation. Their music is good but it’s not memorable enough and doesn’t leave a lasting impression. It doesn’t sound like a cover band yet the band’s influences are too evident, making it easy to forget. Good band, nonetheless.

This Is Atlantis has to be one of our community’s underrated bands, having heard about them from a t-shirt a good friend of mine wears.

They have a brilliant way of conjuring up music that’s narrative, teliing stories and creating vivid imagery in your head. The quartet are explosive live, with intense heavier tracks complemented by their competence with their instruments. That’s the beauty of This Is Atlantis, the ability to evoke emotions and leaving listeners wanting more.

I found it a pity that our music community is so scattered. If not for a few friends telling me to check out This Is Atlantis, I probably wouldn’t have ventured out to Blackhole 212 and discovered bands like Arajua and Within Absence. I look forward to catching all three bands again soon.

(Text & picture by Rebecca Lincoln)

Arajua Myspace | Within Absence Myspace | This Is Atlantis Myspace


Stoned Revivals fans, we’ve got frontman Esam Salleh’s responses to our questions regarding the upcoming “final” gig on Sunday, 27th June 2010 at the Substation. Enjoy…

How would you compare the local music scene now compared to when you started 20 years ago?

i think the passion among the young ones is still the same as when we were kids back then…I still remember being inspired by Stompin Ground at Paya Lebar CC, which led me to form the band with Kamal..i would say that there are better venues, opportunities thru media and the net for bands nowadays. In the old days even places like Zouk were trying to support local talents by providing a venue..the underground gigs were mainly in odd places..the most iconic being the substation where we got to play our first proper gig ( 1993 new Ceremony gig) which was organised by Morris from Pagans. I reckon it’s much better than back then when u relied on snail mail, penpals, fanzines or trading cassettes to spread your music. Now it’s as easy as uploading your tracks on music sites and the chances of you being heard by the whole wide world is not something impossible. I wouldn’t agree to someone saying anything about the good old days…cos i dun live in the past. I would rather be relevant to the current generation of listeners than hold on to past “glories”. People like yourself, Joe Ng, Chris Ho, Paul Zach, Wati Rahmat, Ben Harrison  and zines like BigO, Melt etc..were championing the local music scene and made things easier for earlier waves of underground musicians. I still remember watching OP play Impending Death on prime time n that was one of the happiest and inspiring moments in local music for me. I been away in Kl the last 4 years but i still do keep in touch with whats goin on in the scene…n try my best to promote it in malaysia by organising gigs showcasing sg/kl talents. The amount of talent in Singapore, if u ask me, is on par with the west…cos i have done my travels and even played in places like San Fran etc…and to tell you the truth, the singapore scene is one that we can be proud of, despite what some people would believe..and i also discovered that it’s not always a bed of roses for those in the states…there r thousands of struggling talented musicians screaming to be heard…i have met some of them and shared stages with them on my travels…sure there are the ones who are more fashion than passion, but u need these people to keep the scene vibrant. In order to get your msg heard, u need to reach the masses…so the question of who’s a sellout, who’s innit for the money, who’s real…should not even come up. In order to make a change u gotta realise u have to infiltrate the everyday man…the ones who serve teh o at coffeshops…the ones who drive your taxis…there shouldn’t be a feeling of exclusivity which some might feel is only reserved for their core listeners…i think if we were to put down those negative elements of judging one another…of who’s right or who’s wrong…the scene would get to another level..there are tonnes of good young bands who write passionate music…with rabid fans…so what if majority of e jus wanna be seen, there mite get the real msg eventually…i think everyone is doin their part for what they believe in…u have the punks, the skins, the dnb /DJ scene…the crusties..the black metal scene…the psychetrance scene..underground hip hop….it’s all indie…they are all doin it out of love but in ways only they know best….

2. What is your most memorable Stoned Revivals experience?

for myself must have been on our first gig….it was at sentosa…organised by razzi M studios…we had guitars all tuned differently..a skater drummer…a black metal guitarist….and played covers of ramones and pistols among others…we were so bad that after the slot ended, we went out the back way..i was so embarrassed i wish the ground would open up and swallow me……we then squatted in a circle…i said ” let’s jus fukk it…” but my drummer maazrin told me” nah, it’s our first gig….we’ll get better”…he was the oldest among us and i think that was the best moment for me cos years later, i realised that if it was not for his words…i had actually decided while playin onstage that it was to be our first and last gig…sigh…the joys of adolesence…hahhaha

What is the best fan reaction that the Stoned Revivals have received?

for myself, the most memorable experience was realising that my good friend Ethaya had tears streaming down his cheeks while watching us onstage in his joint Cloth and Clef in KL…He later hugged me and my wife and thanked us for making it a beautiful experience for me that means more than anything…when i know that my music has touched someone in the most basic of human emotion there is…

We know that this is the final gig but will there be any new recordings from the band?

I am actually doin some home recordings on my part..and will be continuing doin stuff both as slowjaxx and on behalf of the band…we got tonnes of songs actually…and i’m currently doin lo-fi versions of them…we r kinda throwing them back n forth thru emails…since we dun live in the same country anymore…at times i record tracks with my Kl line up…pass it back to syed ahmad…he does the layers needed…kamal adds the bass when needed…personally i am goin back to my punk roots…short sharp songs…i have a soft spot for grindcore since my early teen years n i would love to use their short song format but translate that intensity thru a more psychedelic feel…but funny thing is for the band punk has never been regarded as a sound..but rather a state of mind…we love to break the rules..destroy and deconstruct…it helps that i do not know any rules in music…hahaa…i dun even know the names of most chords that i play…there will definitely be music coming out …only thing is it will be released in a low key way…it’s more of the process to me rather than hitting the charts…most people thought we’ve been dead the last 10 years…but actually we been keepin it underground all this while…in ’99 at our peak, i was kinda askin myself questions…was this wat the band was about..i was unsure…so i decided to break the band format and went as a duo…so thruout all those ten years, myself and syed ahmad were actually experimenting with sounds…n layers and structures…doin the odd gig here n there…mostly home based rcordings which eventually got deleted or uploaded online…live sessions….bootlegs….these next ten years ahead would be focused more towards pushing our limits and overcoming the challenge of doin music on different grounds…we all have grown thru the years…even within the band..we each have different ideals n beliefs…we have our own ways of doin things…but ultimately we come together to collide those ideas head on…like i said before..we are your psychedelic punks…so expect nothin less in the future releases…

Any message for your fans on the cusp of this, your final gig?

you will be pleased to know at the gig itself that this celebration of our 20 year journey actually has a msg to it…and that your time n money is not for our profitable gain…personally for myself, i m doing this as a thank you for my band members…and those who have given their support to the band….the friends we made..the good times we shared…the good souls who came together thru this beautiful thing known as music…i m dedicating this to my wife aimee who stood by me thru thick n thin, my son ikkai…my mom and dad…yeah my dad who taught me never to conform …who made me what i m today…u know, truth is…i got rm40 in my pocket rite now, as i m writing this to u…thats all i have for my trip back to do the gig…that’s the beauty of life…not knowing wat lies ahead…a lot like the stoned revivals…haha

Thanks, Esam! Dear friend, this is a gig, nay event not to be missed. RSVP at Facebook.