Monthly Archives: February 2009

Reign For Us

Sometime back on the 16th of August 2008 – the Xfresh X-Gig at Borneo Rainforest Cafe!

Secret Love Cookies.

It wasn’t all guys in the crowd, yay!

Skudap Skudip. Only with ska do you get a keyboardist’s hands jumping up and down like that.

Jom kita berjoget!

Grey Sky Mourning. The reason why all these shots seem a bit different, is because they were shot mostly at high shutter speeds between 1/200s and 1/2500s, at F4 ISO1600, with +3 flash exposure compensation. Oh and of course, a daylight-to-tungsten flash gel on my Sony HVL-F56AM, to create a different color for the flashed subject and the background. The flash head was set to 85mm zoom and pointed forwards (for maximum output) and either TTL or full power.

I then set my (then) Sony Alpha 700’s white balance to around 2800 Kelvin and it made the background look extra blue, when it was in fact daylight.

That’s how you dance!

That’s how you play indie bass guitar!

I really am not sure if he changed, or if he has a brother.

With auto WB, the background was really normal-colored. This is of course without flash.

Hanafi of Estranged, and his beloved Fender Jagstang (which unfortunately got stolen.)

Andy on drums!

Times have changed and so have Estranged – I felt rather estranged from them hearing them play softer Malay songs.

…that’s not to say that they no longer rock out, or jump.

Komplot! I love this band. Disco rock. The vocalist dressed campy enough, too!

The drummer feels it.

Dance To The Radio, a healthy dose of indie. They have a song about how they are not the Arctic Monkeys.

This is how you dance to the music.

Let’s go outside!

Tempat Pasar

28th December 2008 was the first time I stepped into Marketplace, a quaint venue off Jalan Yap Kwan Seng.

It was Doppelganger Open Mic night, and George Wong was headlining!

He pulls off the emo voice perfectly. Emo glasses? Check. Songs about breakup? Check.

Pick a guitar!

Vei comes up for some stand-up comedy. I think he could’ve warmed up the crowd a fair bit more as there were only a select few tuned in.

Come to think of it, a vital part of stand-up comedy is getting the audience’s attention – after all, we’ve all paid cover charge and redeemed our free beer. We should be able to laugh at anything, so it doesn’t matter if your joke are funny or not.

Speaking of beer, I think the tables are really cool! They have barriers to prevent drinks from falling off the table and spilling.

Then, there was the excellent, excellent Sparanormal!

For lack of better classification, I remember them as indie. Well not a very typical Brit indie, though.

Jasmine Low, who had earlier read poems, then interviews the entertaining Freda DragonStar!

And then, it was George’s friend Rina. She has catchy tunes, so catchy that I’d only heard them once before many many years ago, and yet I remember the songs when she performed them!

Then came the unforgettable Rafique Rashid. This guy is hilarious!

He played songs about being caught on video like a certain health minister, among other local commentary. He even changed the lyrics of The Kinks – Lola to go “Yoga, Y-O-G-A Yoga, yo yo yo yo yogaaa…

Then, Freda DragonStar came on stage to recount funny stories and perform a duet with Rafique Rashid. Amazing stuff!

Cokelat So Laris

Christmas Eve, 24th December 2008, at Schokolart, a chocolatey heaven.

On the bill, finger-tapping extraordinaire Az Samad

…and jazzy Shelley Leong! (Oh, and of course Zalila Lee in the background…)

She can kompang too!

There were a few remixes and style changes.

Often, there are songs that we are used to hearing in a sombre, melancholic way, best stripped down to just vocals and one instrument, that lose potency when spruced with fills and riffs. She did do a Berkley on Innocent Girl, I think… I told her later about this, which she had also realized.

Imagine Extreme playing their trademark funk metal over More Than Words, or Red Hot Chili Peppers freaky-stylin’ Under The Bridge. That doesn’t quite work…

Hot chick photographer!

Shelley has the amazing capability to hold completely still for… 1/6th of a second. 135mm F1.8 1/6s ISO3200 yo!

Meanwhile, Az has the amazing capability to never hold completely still for the camera.

Fear of the tuner.

I honestly have a slight fear of detuning my first string (the high E) because it has snapped twice while downtuning. Downtuning! Not tuning up!

Why are you guys arguing whether I am a chocolate ganache or not?

Az breaks out his new toy, the SoloEtte! This takes “reversed headstock” to another level.

Zalila stares out the Solaris.

The amusing Rafique Rashid on sound. He looks diabolical mixing sound sometimes. He also has a diabolical laugh.

Three shots here were taken with the Minolta 50mm F1.4 – the rest used the Carl Zeiss 135mm F1.8. A prize for you if you can figure out which ones!

Ask Az, “Who’s your daddy?” Our National Laureate with luminescent hair, but of course!

I had blue hair once. Here it looks like I have blue hair again.

You have to plug earphones in to hear what you’re playing! I realized that the form of the SoloEtte makes it look like a music-making stick.

27 Going On 28

Rewind to the 27th of November 2008, with Deserters at Laundry Bar! This series will feature technically imperfect pictures.

Oh no, I’ve cropped the head/hands/body of the subject!

Oh no, I’ve overexposed Bo of Seven! (Darn lights, but he looks cute and smiley-like here.)

Count the number of Sony Alpha users in the picture!

Justin the chimp with a Sony Alpha 900 and the lovely Sigma 14mm F3.5.

D-Ash joins Seven on stage to do his white boy shirt boombox thang.

Fast-forward a day to the 28th of November 2008, where I landed for the first time in Lepaq.

You get to see all sorts of random acts. Anybody can come up and play, whenever they want to!

The wonderful thing about Lepaq is, of course, how lepak it is – you get to sit on carpets with throw pillows, enjoy live music and smoke shisha at the same time!

I’m not sure if a freedom of expression table is also something Lepaq provides.

He hops on for some songs to provide much needed backing. This dude can croon!

Udjinn has funky toes.

Otam. Just close your eyes and imagine you’re in a juke joint listening to this cool cat play blues.

I’m not quite sure what this guy is up to (or is pointing up at.)

Realistic Pronounciation

Ah, the wonders of!

She: You’ve got to be realistic.
Me: Why do you keep pronouncing “realistic” that way? You know, ree-al-is-tik? Isn’t it ree-uh-lis-tik?

She shot me an email later with reference to Uncle D.

re�al�is�tic [ree-uh-lis-tik]

re�al�i�ty [ree-al-i-tee]

re�al, real [ree-uhl, reel]

[ree-uh-lee, ree-lee]

Even in English, we can’t decide which way to pronounce derivatives of the word REAL. Her “re-alistic” follows “re-ality” but my “real-istic” follows “real“. Of course, REAL can be either one or two syllables and also depends on what you want it to rhyme with.

I always pronounce REALLY as rail-ee but I guess that’s not valid although everybody sings it that way, REALLY.

Go check out The Beatles – You Really Got A Hold On Me; John Lennon varies the pronounciation (as do the background vocals.) If this song is obscure, it’s time to brag about your Anthology disc collection!

Alternating Current Directly Shot

Stereopath High Voltage, one 20th November 2008 at Laundry Bar.

This is the hard-rocking Aku, who did a cover of Jimi Hendrix – Little Wing.

Yes, I’ve seen this song covered more times than I’d care to. Bring on Freebird already!

Dragon Red is back, with their new bassist!

Amil takes on a new role, singing as well.

The emcee of the night.

Blister! They did a cover of Jimi Hendrix – Voodoo Child, in addition to their excellent hard rock/heavy metal stuff.

It is always a joy to see these dudes play. They go all out! Meet the Gene Simmons-esque tongue.

Meet the drum battle.

Hmmm, this guy looks new! I see a channelling of Robert Trujillo.

Sadly, everybody needs to bring their own drum stool…

They covered Led Zeppelin – Whole Lotta Love, complete with violin bow bit!

Mmm, guitar strings… (pardon the out-of-focus, I almost missed this moment.)

Then it was The Times, Brit indie at its best.

There is a certain expression the members all wear.

Finally, it was Aggrobeats, with a good dosage of ska…

…and, contrastingly, the soul of James Brown.

Leong To Return

I headed down to No Black Tie a certain 16th December 2008 to catch the return of Shelley Leong. Yes, she (or rather, her CD) goes well with wine!

But first, Zalila Lee the percussively funky!

Then, it was the return of Shelley Leong. Seriously.

Not so seriously.

Alda was having a minor time readjusting to the music. Each time Shelley comes back she turns the style of a song totally around, often in a fun way!

Rohnie Tan, guest, and Zalila percuss(es) as usual.

Then, it was the dramatic overture of rock that was Rendra Zawawi.

Hey man, you could just call it folk rock, acoustic or indie…

Well I do think there is a certain ingredient that is added.

Adil Johan adds sax to the mix.

The audience takes it all in.

There, I’ve broken the hiatus. I’m back!

Housemate Sonnet

This is my home, hello! Here’s where I sit
You gave the landlord your fun, chirpy greet
You came by, you moved in and you were sweet
Saw your cute artwork, I thought it was neat
Living with you, I never had a doubt
You would do me favors without a pout
Had we a conflict, we could work it out
With you I just never needed to shout
Leaving on a plane I packed you along
We would spend days basking in rays of sun
You’re perfect company to sing a song
But you shifted out and looked for fresh fun
I could care less if we make housemates foam
So dear baby, let’s make this house a home

Man, I haven’t written sonnets in a long time! Well, only when the inspiration comes.

Under My Umbrella

Rihanna get well soon!

Jason Mraz, please don’t accuse your girlfriend of cheating on you.

Chris Martin, your girlfriend may be cheating on you because your band makes pussy music. (Don’t cry, I liked Trouble.)

Anyway, here’s a gig that’s definitely on:

What: Moonshine: A Homemade Music Show
When: 9:30pm Thursday 12th February 2009
Laundry Bar, The Curve
Who: Azmyl Yunor, Stonebay, Sundae, Shahridir & Nizam P
How Much: Free! Like Rob Schneider said, fuuhhhriiiee!

New Era

In this new era, I am very lost. I’ll be back soon, don’t you worry!

In the meantime, here is some comment-generating filler.

Badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger mushroom mushroom…