‘Popular’ music in Singapore currently falls neatly into two categories. One, smooth urban electro-soul that reflects the entitled materialistic extravagance of the nation’s youth and two, atmospheric dreamy indie pop that is a contradiction of faux-art pretensions and grassroots endeavour. FERS is firmly in the latter camp.

Consisting of relative vets in the local music scene and former members of Giants Must Fall, Enec.e and wyd.syd, FERS sounds exactly as you might expect considering their collective backstory.

The first single “Neverland” – with its painfully obvious allusion to Peter Pan and all that implies about arrested development – is a pointed exercise in all things lush.

Delay, echo and chorus swirl around the listener – an attempt to transport the avid consumer to “a wondrous fantasy world of paradise” (as the copy informs) – even as the lyric video provides the complementary (and appropriate) visuals.

As much as I want to applaud the thought and effort behind this entire enterprise, I find myself feeling numbed by its utter lack of artistic edge whatsoever.

It just feels so safe – like Singapore – and emblematic of what local music has become in recent times. Sure, it’s enjoyable in the moment but lacking substance, it becomes immediately forgettable. Decide for yourself.

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