Monthly Archives: January 2005

Rock News


I bumped into the-one-annoyingly-eager-to-leave-Malaysia at the Blast Off. Later, outside, I heard some Indians saying how f***ed up the sound was. Suddenly, a crusty-voiced Indian exclaimed, “it was damn f***ed up!” That distinctive voice could only be my celebrity “because-I’m-Indian” buddy, Jayaram. There, he’s finally mentioned in my blog. 🙂


I met up Ed and YK at Bintang Walk. YK acquired 5 big Transformers that day. I acquired this:

Reduced Size Multimedia Card my a**. On the left was my new 512MB RS-MMC card; on the right, my old 128MB xD Picture card. The xD was only slightly bigger!

I then headed to The Disco for the gig I promoted earlier.

No, I was not stabbed by any protuding objects here. The Disco has a very nice setting, with a huge window light letting the sun light the stage naturally.

I met Jayaram again; this time, as usual, he was a HELP-ful emcee. Picture has been double-sized to make up for his lack of blog appearances despite the times we had bumped into each other.

Nightshift was an enjoyable old-school thrash metal band. Every old-school thrash metal band should do a Metallica cover and this was no exception, doing For Whom The Bell Tolls.

Brainhead was next with some alternative rock, and their alternative take on Incubus – Drive.

Insulyna gave us crunchy grunge, and a light growly take on Cranberries – Zombie.

Indka from Kuching featured Alex, the drummer from SingleTrackMind and Soft Touch. I wasn’t sure if it was progressive rock.

Zero Gravity threw in Deftones‘ tones, and the energy of KoRn helped with my enjoyment. I particularly the band’s showmanship, especially the bassist’s style.

Ziel played hard rock. Can someone else agree with me when I say the vocalist/guitarist would look like Brandon Boyd, with dreadlocks on?

Republic Of Brickfields played reggae, with a few Bob Marley covers. Peter Hassan Brown (if you’re as underground as you say you are, you’d know the man) was skanking to it, legs kicking the air! Never have I seen so much energy in that rocking (grand?)father. Yes, the metal-lish guitars looked misplaced; were some of them from Koffin Kanser? (I know Aru the vocalist is…)

I recorded videos for most of the bands (512MB maaan, I’m invincible) so ask me on MSN if you want them.

I stayed back to be a roadie. 🙂 We then went to Stadium Merdeka to drop off the snake cables (a giant power extension cord).

Aiyah, nothing to see. Jay Chou ciao already. (It was that night!)

Ever craved Chinese food after converting to Islam? Tupai Tupai serves the bestest lemon chicken and halal versions of Chinese food. It even has big round tables and servings done Chinese style, but with (get this) leather tablecloths. The outside of the wooden-plank-raised place was the woods, where we assume squirrels live.

Friend: Why do they call it Tupai Tupai? Do they serve squirrels here?
Me: Yeah, I’m sure that squirrels could eat the food off the table as they like.

I felt a sense of pride, knowing that Alda and I would carry on the corny humor of Az.

On the way back, a bunch of us rode in the back of a Mitsubishi Storm. *cue Jim Morrison whispering “Riders Of The Storm“* With that, I can now change my Friendster picture to something that attracts less gay guys and girls with headscarves.

Oh, and to mark, who posted a comment in Santa Was A Telekom Engineer:

The PPPoA option is available in the setup program on the CD. I’m not sure if the option is available when you Telnet your router.

Link *blink*

I’ve added links after much justified procrastination. Here goes:

Bent Chopsticks
Thank you sir for faithfully reading my blog and reinstilling my Transformer collecting. (I’m sorry YK, you didn’t tell me to buy Arcee…) He is also gay.

Hey, I’m not ashamed to let people know I have gay friends. I could even brag that I know quite a few, trying to sound like some informed, sensitive new age guy. I even go to underground rock gigs at gay clubs. Yes, it’s that sad that noone is willing to let us rock. Unless you are Paul Meffert (Paul you rock!)

On a side tangent, why can’t lesbians be hot by guy standards? A gay guy can be well-groomed, and a girl would say, “Wow he’s hot. Too bad he’s gay.” A gay guy could also be a sissyus prancealotus (refer to above link for definition).

However, I’ve only seen lesbians of the short-haired variety. (And some say, short-fingernailed.) Tomboyish in nature. Guys don’t go, “Wow she’s hot. Too bad she’s lesbian.” I don’t know any hot lesbians. Then again, I don’t know many lesbians. I don’t even know what music lesbians listen to! (Pardon my generalization in saying Kylie Minogue is a gay icon, and that inclusion of her and similiar artistes in your playlist may indicate your leanings.)

And dammit, straight hot chicks can French kiss each other for drunken party fun and not disgust anybody.

And now, for the other links.

I haven’t read such an eloquent, witty storytelling camwhore in such a long time, fresh from the land of cheaper guitars, tobacco-less air and chewing-gum-less MRTs.

Dammit, why can’t she be a full-on camwhore as well?

This coke mix buddy said she could solve the cube.

She seems more adamant to learn the cube than anyone else. 🙂

Funny dude. Funny blog. From the land where metric and imperial measurements co-exist.

Funny dude. Funny blog. From the land where uh… luxury cars come from.

Excellent guitarist. Despite having four eyes, he captures things in monoscopic vision. 😉

He does drum solos, he sings hard rock, shirtless and tattooed, and he’s got balls-out writing.

And finally, for the music geek:
Alan W. Pollack’s musicological journey through the Beatles’ songs
I stole this link from Az. Turns out these dudes were musical geniuses hidden in pop songs with bridges. Yes, you read that right – bridges. Ever noticed how Beatles songs don’t have refrains/choruses, but have bridges instead?


I felt like a schoolboy. Teehee!

I was doing my rounds of refilling my two 1 liter bottles (hard-to-find Spritzer Pops) in the office pantry. I stood there, waiting for one bottle to fill up, when this hot chick came in. I tried not to make it obvious that I was looking. My chance to get a clear visual, I thought, would be in between bottles.

She was directly to my left. 9 o’clock if you will. I turned left, but more like 8 o’clock left (so it would seem I was looking at the door instead of her!)

She smiled at me. A super sweet, and yet sincere smile.

Inside, I panicked. I did my sheepiest smile, shyly trying not to look at her. She was now my 1 o’clock. It was like she caught me. Like she knew my tactic.

As the other bottle filled, I walked near the door as if to get some air, and drinking from the first bottle. I walked back in to close the tap for the second bottle. Oh boy, confrontation again!

I did the same thing. Sheepish smile. She again smiled. Fwah. *flutters hands*

I then exited the pantry.

Now smiling at people waiting in the pantry is a common thing, like saying “here you go, it’s your turn.” To me, it was a corporate courtesy kind of thing, only done in the office. (We don’t smile at people behind us at the cashier, do we?) Balding uncles with glasses would smile at my female colleagues and I, and none of us would be offended. It would be, really, like giving a handshake with your face.

However, this was different. This was a sincere, uncorporate-gestureish smile! It wasn’t a courtesy smile, it was a “I caught you, how adorable” smile.

I wouldn’t have felt so schoolboy if I smiled at her confidently. Where would the fun be in that?

Pictures, Addendum

Saturday, 15th January 2005:

As I passed by the skating rink, I saw a huge crowd amass around this guy and his own dancing partner, getting Good, Excellent and Perfect. Ask me for the video (I only realized I could record video a bit late, and captured him giving up…)

Little did Ed know that this game would be his most dextrous moment of the month.

The world’s tallest men? I think not. They weren’t that much taller than Shaz, and Shaz was not that close to 7 feet anyway. 7 feet sounds credible for your average NBA player, so there should be taller dudes elsewhere! They were probably just out for the RM10-per-polaroid scheme.

Rock And Relax

It is with great sadness that I close the offer to sell my legendary Fujifilm A202 digicam. Anyway, here goes some random pictures with my new camera:

Help me, I’ve got Transformer acquisition syndrome.

No my favorite high-class roadside mamak (Steak N Goreng next to BB Plaza) is gone! (Or they’ve just been goreng-ed.)

Saturday the 22nd

National Treasure was cool. Nicholas Cage carries his classic accidental hero look. He doesn’t even need an eleven to get uh, an undisclosed amount of treasure.

The young balloon slowly rises to the top, and it shall join its trapped brethren.

I finally checked out Dide’s crib. Look ma, no mosquitos!

There is just something so pretty about these colors.

Sunday the 23rd

Rock Dawg Music Fest at Paul’s New Place (I prefer to call it that) had some interesting things, like Triple6Poser’s new lineup. Ed the drummer did hard rock vocals way better than Khai’s punk-stained vocals. However, the new drummer Alex didn’t do a drum solo.

Justin Guber has a shiny new toy.

I discovered that setting my camera to ISO 400 looked pretty with the lights. From top left, left to right then down: The Blumps, Seven, John’s Mistress, Tempered Mental, Fatal Tragedy and Triple6Poser.

I think this public telephone booth was set up not to shade the caller from the sun, but from the menace of bird poo. Somehow, Bangkok Bank and Central Market is the center of bus public transportation as well as domestic avian flights.

In other news:

I don’t usually do this (promote gigs) because of that uncertainty of going (though I usually end up going) and sounding like a hypocrite. Heck.

Where: The Disco (above Liquid) at the back of Central Market
When: Saturday 29th January 2005, 5pm to 9pm
Who: Republic Of Brickfields, Ziel, Brainhead, Zero Gravity, Indka, Insulyna, nightshift
How much: Pre-sale RM15, at the door RM18

I’ll uh, update my links soon. Promise!

Blog Gatherings

Saturday Morning

1200 hours, MPH Sunway Pyramid
No Xfresh bloggers around.

1220 hours, Osim Sunway Pyramid
The salesman amazes me with his knowledge. “You know women with high heels, their calves are more developed.” I actually consider buying one of their products as I sit, testing out the iSqueez.

1238 hours, MPH Sunway Pyramid
I meet Hannna. I drank her Coke. Will, Ed and Kristine soon came along, and we adjourned to Pizza Hut, where Suet Li and Ashraf appeared out of nowhere. Shaz deserves a plug too, for bringing his crowd to Pizza Hut anyway.

We walked about a bit, and I bumped into Hanna’s friend. “Remember me? You drank my coke at the Taylor’s Battle Of The Bands!” (Flashback! Ironically, I drank Hanna’s coke earlier that day.)

The guitar store had two shop assistants doing a very, very cool improvised rendition of Gary Moore – Still Got The Blues. I stood around, waiting for the chorus or solo bit, but no! Somebody who obviously didn’t pay them to jam all day came in. 🙁

Ed and I then headed to Elena‘s barbecue party.

2000 hours, Elena’s House

Good food, though the festivities were marred by some dumb ideas. Well at least I learnt what a body shot was and got CPR. 🙂 Two, I repeat, two, Rubik’s Cubes were totalled that night.

Sunday Morning

0900 hours, Elena’s House

For some reason I seem to like taking pictures of cats basking in the sun. A brand new day. A new tomorrow?

1100 hours, Starbucks New Wing, One Utama
Ed and I spread our unbathed malodor to Peter Tan‘s blog gathering. I shall not provide commentary, links (I’ll steal the full list later) and much less obligatory shots, but the more interesting Photoshop-enhanced ones were:

Ed made a good laptop advertisement model.

Chet brought this baby. Well maybe it wasn’t a baby. It was a kicking teenage rebel. Okay that’s not right either. The Dana Wireless could possibly be the last foray by Palm Computing – cheap notebooks are getting cheaper. Even the HP Ipaq 5450 is considered big, and PDAs have keyboard attachments! Add the proliferation of phones with color screens (when was the last time you heard a monophonic SMS ringtone on the LRT?) and you have something only a die-hard Palm user will buy. At least it has expansion slots, including two SD card slots! That would make a nice transferring device for your digital camera.

That is an awesome afro.

Fazri dropped Lionel and I off at the LRT station, and we headed to Taman Jaya.

1700 hours, some cybercafe in Amcorp Mall

Lionel lives up to his paedophile reputation. Shaky picture was intentionally picked. Itchy girl gives good scratch massage.

Links shall be updated soon, I hope.

This Is Not Geek Rock

Self-explanatory. The New Paul’s Place (I’d rather it be called Paul’s New Place) was behind Asoka, a club opposite Pearl International Hotel (near Pearl Point) on the Puchong side of Old Klang Road. I came, finding out about the gig from the MENSA email newsletter. However, upon arriving I found otai Saiful collecting entry donations to this Tsunami charity gig. “Huh what MENSA gig? If there were smart people here, I wouldn’t be here…” I was intimidated by not knowing who I could hand an unsolved Rubik’s Cube to, in the crowd of unusually old people. (They could be Julian Mokthar’s friends!)

This would be the first time I’d see Ariff Akhir perform. Interesting voice and guitar.

Second time for second act Kohl.

Julian Mokhtar and Chris the fiddler on the roof. (Well the new Paul’s Place was way at the top, in a spacious attic…) They did wickedly cool covers of Led Zeppelin – Stairway To Heaven, blues style, and Julian said, “I’m going to murder Metallica next.” (He did Enter Sandman, and Chris’ fiddling was inspiring Apocalyptica-ly.) Ask me for videos!

13-year old Eve sings about life in a Simple Plan kind of way.

Karen Nunis and the dudes were cool, despite Karen being sick. It wasn’t till a guitar string broke that Chris took over the stage with his tasteful fiddle shredding.

One of the dudes had a 3-piece-body Ibanez. Sweeet.

A guest dude would be the drummer – Paul himself!

This would be the first time I’d see the eccentric, zany, brooding 360 Degree Head Rotation as a band and not just one Rafil screaming his head off. The old people left, and I knew then that those were the smart bunch.

Special attention was paid to the lead guitarist Jack. He put the melody to the blaring fuzz of Rafil’s guitar.

Drunk Ben took to the stage, with an acoustic set featuring CK on distorted nylon guitar. Ben’s B***hes dissed, pissed, cursed in verse, and entertained.

Tempered Mental had to be the odd one out with their progressive rock.

So how?

I didn’t meet up with any MENSA people. Yellow bellied I became.

Digicam For Sale

If you’ve visited my blog and went, “wow, those are very nice pictures!” and you’d like to take pictures that make people go, “wow, those are very nice pictures!“, you now CAN.

I am selling the legendary Fujifilm A202 digicam that has immortalized many interesting views in my blog. Every picture you will see as of June 2004 till Christmas Eve 2004 was taken with this very camera. I warn you that this is merely a barebones digicam for those who cannot afford anything better. A lot of it depends on your compositional skills and Photoshop experience.

I’m selling it because I have a better camera now.

The price? RM225, negotiable. However, it also includes a carrying case, a 16MB xD Picture card, AND hands-on training (on the camera, and about Photoshop over MSN chat) from the same person who brought you such eye-catching pictures. ME!

Consider this as well – the 1 Megapixel variant of this camera (the A101) is selling second-hand in Cash Converters Kelana Jaya for RM235.

Axe Spend It Sure

The past few mornings have been spent researching better ways to save money. My mom helped me put in some amount into fixed deposits a few years ago, and they expired recently, so she took it out as one lump sum.

I’ve had RM**** in a fixed deposit for 4 years getting 3.7% per annum. I want something more.

That, I said to a personal financial consultant, and she threw all her financial knowledge at me in technical jargon like I looked like I knew what she meant. Maybe she thought I was cute.

Other banks were judgemental based on my T-shirt, jeans and laptop bag.

So the next big thing was unit trusts. I was pretty impressed with the 6-15% interest, but our family’s Chief Financial Officer (my dad) was not.

Why do you think they have so many new funds and various service charges? To cover up their losses! They only pick those performing ones to show you in graphs!

And so, I put the cash back in a fixed deposit. 🙁 A joint account with a senior citizen (my mom) bumped up the interest to 3.8%, but still! What is 3.7%?

Supposing you had RM1000, and you chucked it in a fixed deposit for 12 months at 3.7% per annum. That would give you RM37 in interest a year.

RM37 isn’t much, especially if you have a job. I could save that by skipping 4 frappucinos in a year! Divide that by 12 months for just over RM3 a month. You could save RM3 a month, or 10 sen a day, by just converting from your daily dose of Teh O Ais Limau (RM1.20) to Teh Tarik (RM1.00).

Thus, saving accounts of any kind aren’t about getting extra money to spend. It’s about keeping money out of your itchy, spending hands.

Break The Silence

On January 4th 2005, the Songwriters Avenue 2 broke the tsunami’s no-gig silence. Like its first instalment, it was at Le Bernardin. This round, Shelley Leong, Az Samad and Reza Sallehuddin played. Shelley’s guitar playing had noticeably improved since last year in songs like Crime (yes, I’m still not over the last-year jokes). Az however had a fever and did a lot more ‘haram‘ notes than before, but managed to take jazz-ic license by improvising.

Reza deserves a paragraph to himself. I saw Tracy‘s heart melting, mesmerized by his voice. Plus he had excellent guitar sounds too, ranging from rock to hearty jazz to ballad.

The sound monitor (not TV mind you) made an excellent tripod.

This is what happens when you mistakenly use a yellow cloth as your custom white balance reference. Pictures with flash turn blue!

Photoshop saves the day.

If you want videos I recorded, ask me! I quickly exhausted my 16MB SD card and the 32MB SD card Jenifer lended me, so they aren’t that long, but at least they have sound.

From top-left, clockwise: Sui Lin of Her Reverie, Yyan (with weirder tunings than Az), Alda (on bass, covering Az’s Latah Setinggan, accompanied by Az himself), Izzy (the reason why I wanna dye my hair white), Lisa, and Yee Meng who did a killer tribute to Az and Shelley (with a very Az-influenced song).

After that was Rafique Rashid from former gig-place No Black Tie and a guy from Cameroon.

The most notable star, however, was the guy who wrote and sang the Malay equivalent of acoustic singalong More Than Words (by Extreme). Manbai sang Kau Ilhamku.

Oh, and I’ve updated my Quotes page with:
There are unisex toilets in every home.

I felt like a genius when I came up with that.