Tag: Esplanade

SINGAPORE WRITERS FESTIVAL: DIMENSIONS & DEMONS – FERRY + STEPHANIE YESINGAPORE WRITERS FESTIVAL: DIMENSIONS & DEMONS – FERRY + STEPHANIE YE

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As promised, we present to you the thoughts of the collaborative artists behind Dimensions & Demons, to be performed at the Esplanade Recital Studio on 5th November, as part of Singapore Writers Festival 2015.

“The work of Ferry and Stephenie Ye, Rain City is a series of bittersweet narratives that charts a course through a web of parallel existences and possibilities.”

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HOUSE OF RIOT WITH CHARLIE LIM, INCH & THE GREAT SPY EXPERIMENT!HOUSE OF RIOT WITH CHARLIE LIM, INCH & THE GREAT SPY EXPERIMENT!

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On 6 June, House of Riot – home to Singapore’s well-loved independent acts, Charlie Lim, iNCH, and The Great Spy Experiment – presents an ambitious live show in homage to made-in-Singapore music, at The Esplanade’s grande dame The Concert Hall.

#sgindie music at the Esplanade Concert Hall? Somewhat unprecedented but surely the potentially record-breaking triple bill stands perfectly placed to do the deed.

Tickets for the Riot show are now on sale at SISTIC, and priced at S$50 for normal admission; S$40 for students and NSFs.

IN EACH HAND A CUTLASS’ THE KRAKEN IS A PROGRESSIVE ROCK MONSTER FOR THE AGESIN EACH HAND A CUTLASS’ THE KRAKEN IS A PROGRESSIVE ROCK MONSTER FOR THE AGES

IEHAC

Daniel Sassoon, Nelson Tan, Sujin Thomas, Jordan Cheng, Amanda Ling

One of the perks of being a rock journalist is getting advances of new releases and it’s even more satisfying when you get a chance to listen to cutting edge rock music that is made by good friends as well. As regular visitors to Power of Pop will be all too aware, I have been a rabid fan of In Each Hand a Cutlass since the early days and whilst guitarist extraordinaire Daniel Sassoon (Livonia, Electrico) has always been the band lynchpin, the musicians Sassoon has surrounded himself with over several lineup changes have always been some of the best in the business.

IEHAC’s debut A Universe Made of Strings was a powerhouse in its own right but seems almost like a kindergarten school outing when compared to the new album, The Kraken. As dynamic as those individual tracks were, they cannot hold a candle to the cohesive ambition displayed on this astounding work. Helmed by the legendary L.A. producer Brad Wood, there is a consistency running throughout the LP that compels the listener to sit entranced for the entire duration, breathless at the wonder and awe that the music evokes, somewhat effortlessly.

As its centrepiece is the mammoth title track, broken down into four parts, for easier consumption. “The Kraken” is almost a treatise on rock music itself, finding ways to incorporate diverse strands of the best rock styles that have inspired millions over decades. Once again, this is progressive rock in the best sense of that term – not merely a genre identifier but a statement of artistic intent. Equal parts post-rock, prog-metal and psych-rock, this epic number brings the unwary listener across dimensions, a witness to interplanetary warfare and the birth and death of galaxies! One never questions the lack of lyrics for even a micro-second as the music speaks volumes.

If the album only contained “The Kraken”, it would already be worth the price of admission but add to that the power and majesty of tracks like “Ouroboros” and “Heracleion” and the picture is perfect. Essential but you already knew that.

IEHAC launches The Kraken on 24th April 2015 at the Esplanade Recital Studio. Tickets available from SISTIC.

In the meantime, listen to the first single “Satori 101”

Connect with IEHAC online

Web http://www.ineachhandacutlass.com/
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/IEHAC
Twitter http://www.twitter.com/IEHAC
Bandcamp http://ineachhandacutlass.bandcamp.com/

BAYBEATS 2014: DAY THREEBAYBEATS 2014: DAY THREE

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Inevitably for me, Day Three of most year’s Baybeats tend to be a little anti-climatic. After the hustle and bustle of the first two days, fatigue sets in and it has not been uncommon for me to sometimes entirely miss Day Three. So with that in mind, I decided to focus on the performances going on at the Chillout Stage (the Concourse) and found the experience thoroughly enlightening!

Pitch Feather delivered high gloss renditions of its excellent debut album – Mountains and Tides – singer Alberta Leong has an appealing voice that embellishes the band’s luscious take on 70s folk music that very quickly endeared them to the rapt audience. Considering this was the band’s very first live performance, there were nerves and a couple of errors but nothing fatal. Would love to see Pitch Feather develop further in the local indie scene.

.gif provide a polar opposite to Pitch Feather’s rustic warm tones with an electro-pop set that once again showcased the vocal talents of Weish. It was instructional as usual to see Weish construct ambient sounds from her vocals to utilize backings for the songs. Far from being cold constructs, the songs seemed vaguely personal as colours and shapes filled the room (figuratively, of course).

Pixel Apartment (aka Jordan Chia) was a sheer delight – both soulfully and intellectually. Operating his one man band (complete with video!) with the main focus on grand piano, Jordan provided a pleasing set which showcased his skills with electronics as well as songwriting. That said, perhaps the high point was Jordan’s wonderful cover of “What Sarah Said” (Death Cab for Cutie) sympathetically played on the piano. Yet another local musician with loads of talent!

And that was Day Three for me. Well satisfied with the slate of promising local musicians enough to believe that the future of the Singapore indie music scene is indeed bright! Thanks again to all the cool people I ran into today and once again to the Esplanade for putting together another first rate Baybeats Festival!

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BAYBEATS 2014: DAY ONEBAYBEATS 2014: DAY ONE

For me, this year’s Baybeats is all about people. Watching aspiring musicians grow into great bands and artists and getting the response and acclaim that they so richly deserve. Wishing the very best for them on stage as they take another step towards fulfilling their musical dreams.

Last night, I was so happy to see Stopgap open the Powerhouse performances with an assured set. I recall first seeing them at last year’s auditions and rooting for their progress but alas one wrong song choice and they were booted out (yes I was pissed off!). But kudos to the band for learning from that experience, getting onto the Noise Mentorship Programme, making it on the second attempt (YES!) and generally having the best possible attitude in doing their best in our music scene. So yes, their moment in the spotlight was fully deserved! And I believe there’s more in store for these boys!!

Over at the Concourse, DEON did what he did best – deliver sparkling pop-rock with a refreshing honesty – Deon Toh is as real as it gets! Getting to know Deon at the Noise-Timbre Singer-Songwriters thingy a few years ago was a genuine blessing and am so pleased at how far he has come since then. Still the same down-to-earth guy, you must really check out his full-length album Antiphobic!

Jaime Wong! What a voice! What great songs! Like Deon, I first met Jaime at the same Noise-Timbre thingy and in her unassuming, deprecating manner she has grown by leaps and bounds. An awesome talent and I really cannot wait to listen to her debut EP when it comes out in the next few months.

Kudos to The Esplanade for giving Singapore bands and artists this amazing showcase! Long may Baybeats run!

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BAYBEATS 2014: PoP RECOMMENDATIONSBAYBEATS 2014: PoP RECOMMENDATIONS

Which bands/artists will Power of Pop be focusing on during the next three nights of Baybeats 2014?

Friday 27th

STOPGAP | Powerhouse 7.30pm SPHAERAS | Arena 8.00pm DEON | Chillout Stage 9.15pm

JAIME WONG | Chillout Stage 10.15pm GIANTS MUST FALL | Arena 10.15pm

Saturday 28th

ENEC.E | Chillout Stage 5.00pm LOST WEEKEND | Arena 6.00pm BANI HIDIR | Chillout Stage 7.00pm

SSIGHBORGGG | Arena 8.15pm LIGHTCRAFT | Arena 9.15pm INCH | Arena 10.30pm

Sunday 29th

PITCH FEATHER | Chillout Stage 5.45pm .GIF | Chillout Stage 6.45pm

PIXEL APARTMENT | Chillout Stage 7.45pm MONSTER CAT | Arena 9pm

Have a great Baybeats weekend!

 

 

 

 

BAYBEATS 2014 – SPHAERASBAYBEATS 2014 – SPHAERAS

“A sphere is an ultimate expression of unity, completeness, and integrity” – so begins Sphaeras’ self-description! So it’s certain that its responses to our FIVE questions about Baybeats 2014 should be a hoot!

Why should fans check out your performance at Baybeats?

We are the only instrumental band to have made it through the auditions; we offer an entirely different brand of music that (we hope) will reshape your opinion on instrumental music. Our live performance on the big stage is guaranteed to be full of energy, emotions and spontaneity. Words often inadequately encapsulate how we sound live, so check us out at Baybeats, (best of all) for free!

Why are you excited about playing at Baybeats?

As an event that we have attended religiously, we have seen many great bands/artists grace the stage over the years. It is exhilarating to have been privileged with this opportunity to introduce our music to an audience of a size we typically wouldn’t reach. Additionally, we get to watch and play alongside fantastic bands that include fellow budding acts Stopgap and False Plaintiff.

Why do you think you were selected to play for Baybeats?

From what we have gathered, the judges were especially impressed with our display of music technicality and also our ability to deliver complexity in a natural, seamless form. The judges were also impressed with our standard of performance during the outdoor audition – remarking that we had ‘set a high bar’ – considering that it was actually our first time playing in front of a live ‘audience’. Interestingly, Zakhran Khan, in all his glory, was ceremoniously compared to Bani Hidir (B Quartet, 53A, Youthwreck) repeatedly for his unmistakable prowess.

If you had to choose just three bands to watch at Baybeats, which bands would they be and why?

1. Giants Must Fall: It has been ages since we’ve seen them play and we really dig their Leprosy and Anchor EP. Can’t wait to hear them live.
2. Earthmover: Our friends from Anechois and Bandwagon gave some great reviews of them from their trip to the Philippines. We weren’t disappointed with their material online and are sure they will be awesome at this year’s Baybeats.
3. Two Million Thanks: They have their own twist of the math rock genre and a kickass music video. It would be interesting to witness them live.

When and where are you playing at Baybeats?

We’ll be playing on Friday, the 27th of June, 8 – 830pm at the Arena (Esplanade Outdoor Theater).

BAYBEATS 2014: THEY WILL KILL US ALLBAYBEATS 2014: THEY WILL KILL US ALL

The Malaysian band with the enigmatic name returns to our shores for Baybeats. Amir Shazlan braves our FIVE questions about Baybeats 2014 on behalf of They Will Kill Us All.

Why should fans check out your performance at Baybeats?

We always have fond memories when playing Singapore. All the time, it manages to bring out the best in us. This is the main reason why people should check us out. Then afterwards, they are entitled to form their own opinions.

Why are you excited about playing at Baybeats?

Baybeats have always been a festival that heavily supports the independents. Other festival maybe cooler, but none has the staying power like Baybeats due to its mission. So to us it is an honour to play Baybeats and we pledge to give a kick ass show, like we always do everytime.

Why do you think you were selected to play for Baybeats?

To be honest, we have no idea at all but I’d like to think its all about the music!

If you had to choose just three bands to watch at Baybeats, which bands would they be and why?

Indonesian bands are always killer, so we plan to catch Seringai and Lightcraft. Especially Seringai, cause their brand of rock really brings out the metalheads in us. But The Full Pledge Munkees are really must watch.

When and where are you playing at Baybeats?

We will be playing on Friday 27th at 10.45PM. Hope those catching our show to come up and have a chat with us afterwards!

BAYBEATS 2014: LIGHTCRAFTBAYBEATS 2014: LIGHTCRAFT

How can you not be intrigued by a band that describes itself as “an antidote for rainy days, sleepless nights, mournful moments, lovelorn phases and sleepy mornings”.  With that in mind, let’s see how lightcraft dealt with our FIVE questions about Baybeats 2014 (via Imam).

Why should fans check out your performance at Baybeats?

Because most people don’t know us from Adam! We’re very much an unknown quantity in Singapore (we’ve only played there twice, and they were aeons ago), but we might just tickle someone’s fancy in one way or another. Besides the obligatory songs from our latest album that we’re currently promoting, “Colours Of Joy”, we’ll also be debuting a few brand-new songs too. Expect 45 minutes of melodic, anthemic songs that are peppered with melancholy; perfect to soothe your weary heart and soul.

Why are you excited about playing at Baybeats?

Without wanting to give off the slightest hint of sounding cheesy, it honestly has been a dream of ours to play Baybeats – ever since our days in KL – so it’s amazing to be invited at last after fantasizing about it for more than six years. We’ve been buzzing ever since we got the call. We’re looking forward to meeting and making new friends, and to share our music to everybody over there. We can’t wait!

Why do you think you were selected to play for Baybeats?

Well, we’d like to think that the hard work that we have put in all these years have finally paid off, and our progress has impressed someone out there. Nobody knows for sure, but either way, we’re just over the moon that we’re given this opportunity.

If you had to choose just three bands to watch at Baybeats, which bands would they be and why?

Only three? This is a tough one!

They Will Kill Us All would be one, because we’ve played with them a number of times back in the day in KL, and they’ve always been an awesome band, even with the line-up changes and slight shift in musical direction.

Pitch Feather, because they’re curious about us, and we’re curious about them as well.

Can we cheat and lump in both Inch and Monster Cat together as a package? They’ve been at the forefront of the Singaporean indie music scene, they produce music of the highest quality and we’ve never seen them live before.

When and where are you playing at Baybeats?

We’ll be playing on Saturday, June 28, at 9.15pm (our compatriots, the hard-as-nails Seringai, will also be playing on the same evening), over at the Arena stage (Esplanade Outdoor Theatre).

 

BAYBEATS 2014: PITCH FEATHERBAYBEATS 2014: PITCH FEATHER

The first proper musical performance to be given by Pitch Feather! That’s just so special!! Let’s see what the band has to say about our FIVE questions about Baybeats 2014 – via Alberta Leong.

Why should fans check out your performance at Baybeats?

It will be our very first live appearance as Pitch Feather. Fans can come experience the special night with us. Also, it’s a great chance for our supporters to get to know us a little better, on a more personal level. We will be playing unplugged sets supported by a band of very talented musician friends, so they can expect to hear delicate, chillout versions of our songs with different arrangements, which is something you won’t be able to hear on our record.

Why are you excited about playing at Baybeats?

Chuan and I have been attending Baybeats almost every year and we’re always excited to discover promising emerging artisit/bands. As motivation to become better musicians, we tell ourselves that we have to play there someday. This dream is finally coming true, and it feels great to be part of the Baybeats family. We hope to make some new friends and share our music with more people through this experience. It will be a great start to our live performances too.

Why do you think you were selected to play for Baybeats?

Maybe some kind soul recommended us. Maybe they liked our recorded music and were curious to see how we sound like live? We can’t be sure but we felt very honoured and grateful when we were given this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

If you had to choose just three bands to watch at Baybeats, which bands would they be and why?
This is tough, there are so many acts we want to catch, but if we have to choose only three, we’d probably choose those that we can’t see often or have never seen before.

Lightcraft – they sound really melodic and full in their recordings. Curious to hear how they sound like live.

Giants Must Fall – we love it that they are also self-funded, self-produced indie folks like us. They also haven’t been performing in a while, so we’re keen to catch them live.

ENEC.E – we’re looking forward to hearing the soothing vocal harmonies and alluring melodies.

When and where are you playing at Baybeats?

We’ll playing on the 3rd day of Baybeats (29 Jun, Sunday) at the Chillout Stage (Esplanade Concourse). We’ll be playing two sets – 5.45pm and 8.45pm.

 

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BAYBEATS 2014: TWO MILLION THANKSBAYBEATS 2014: TWO MILLION THANKS

To get us all ready for Baybeats 2014, we posed FIVE questions to various bands playing at the upcoming festival. First up, Thailand’s Two Million Thanks!

Why should fans check out your performance at Baybeats?

We think if it’s possible people should watch every band performs as well as our band because we are the only band from Thailand and we have our own characteristics and uniqueness.

Why are you excited about playing at Baybeats?

We are very excited. It is a great opportunity that we do not get often to play abroad. Especially in Singapore where there are many indy music fans. We prepared for the show and would make it best.

Why do you think you were selected to play for Baybeats?

It could be about the uniquenss of our music. And some of our music might sound strength , new , creative but still easy to listen.

If you had to choose just three bands to watch at Baybeats, which bands would they be and why?

Ssighborggg, MONSTER CAT , .gif
Those are 3 bands that we would like to see because the chance to see foreigner’s band is quite rare. So we would like to watch the bands that really stand out by their styles. We might get inspired or new things to know about.

When and where are you playing at Baybeats?

We perform at Powerhouse on Friday 27 June , 9.30 PM

Check out Two Million Thanks online.

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TEGAN & SARA – LIVE IN SINGAPORE [REVIEW]TEGAN & SARA – LIVE IN SINGAPORE [REVIEW]

Courtesy of Dominic Phua and Now/Live

Part of their promotional tour for their latest album Heartthrob, Canadian sisters Tegan and Sara performed at the Esplanade Concert Hall on the 13th of May.

Apparently handpicked by Tegan and Sara themselves, homegrown singer-songwriter Weish delivered a memorable opening act that featured her signature searing vocals and electric looping shenanigans. Continually layering, looping, and effecting her voice into rich tapestries of songs, this reviewer thinks Weish is an act to watch, and a breath of creative fresh air in a local scene crowded with too many plaintive guitar-based songs from singer-songwriters.

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