Monthly Archives: April 2016

Feedback Open Mic ft Aina Abdul & Sid @ The Bee Publika / March 2016 Edition

22nd March 2016: Feedback Open Mic ft Aina Abdul & Sid @ The Bee Publika / March 2016 Edition. Here’s Atila and host/emcee Reza Salleh to the side!

Isaac Ho.

One half of Joanne & Julia.

This is the one without glasses, so we know she’s Joanne. (Edited because I mixed them up anyway, referring to a jumbled up memory instead of a previous blog entry which correctly identified them!)

Hello Luqman.


Feedback. Yes, that is their band name.

Reening Lau has company this time. This is a stitch of two photos.


Glass with a sexy bass.

Armand Tanzarian is an effect magician.

First featured act, Sid Murshid!

Jerry Lim on drums. If he looks familiar, it’s because he’s the younger brother of Eddy Lim of Rollin’ Sixers, who used to play drums back when they were called Triple6Poser.

Cheryl on bass as always.


Breaking the combo is Andy on guitar.

Beevees, because they are backup vocals, usually. They harmonized wonderfully, as BVs are expected to, and grooved to Little Mix – Wings.

Andy also played for the second featured act…

…the stellar Aina Abdul! Just when you thought she could not outdo her stage presence, she surprised us all with Led Zeppelin – Whole Lotta Love.

It was a hard act to follow, but Wicked Stone succeeded.

The vocalist brought such rock energy, with an appropriately over-the-top Guns N Roses – Sweet Child O’ Mine.

They also started with a slow Innuendo – Belaian Jiwa. Were they going to crank it up? Sure enough, they did, and we cheered! We were hoping they would, anyway.

Sound Of Sit.

They did a lounge version of Guns N Roses – November Rain, just as epic. How coincidental!

Buncho is a rap crew.

This guy looked so familiar. I told Cheryl that he was really Keino Mess in rapper disguise, wearing the hat to hide his trademark afro.

Happyfingers ended the night like The Don he was.

Open Mic at Timbre at The Row

17th March 2016: Open Mic at Timbre at The Row. It’s been many years since I’ve seen underground music (if we can call open mikes that) on Jalan Doraisamy, known to the yuppies as Asian Heritage Row. The Row is the latest redevelopment. To be exact, just about 11.5 years ago, I was there for the KLue 4th Anniversary. For scale, the KLue 1st Anniversary was also the very first Urbanscapes. I’ve been for every single Urbanscapes there is and have yet to break that combo!

First up, the rhythmically blue Reening Lau!

Kim Lim does her usual fingerstyle…

…and then surprised us (or at least me) with a song she’d sing!

Wong Aaron lifts, bro.

The F.O.I. fills up the stage.

Mystery Tapes, with Shaneil Devaser on bass (who is also the host and emcee for the event.)

Glowing drumsticks! I ordered non-glowing drumsticks through Timbre’s menu, which you’d access through an iPad. Cool stuff!

Later that night, Nick Yungkit would play, separate from the open mike.

They were all dressed in black.

Nick has this solid 80s R&B voice that hits the spot in so many of the inflections used in the genre. (Some other R&B singers would hit one or two inflections more, but he hits a lot more.) He also did a lot of Michael Jackson covers, with particular attention to all his vocal style, yet not being an exact carbon copy.

Open Mic @ Barlai #21

10th March 2016: Open Mic @ Barlai #21 at Barlai, Jalan Sin Chew Kee. Here’s Keino Mess!

I finally got to record his massive earworm, Busk. You’d hear it and know. Whyyy?

Ian Tai was hosting the night.

The F.O.I..

They covered Estrella – Stay. It’s always nice to hear it sung by a different timbre of voice.

Speaking of timbre, here’s Nicholas Sia.

Armand Tanzarian always brings something interesting to the table.

Ian Tai, well, just has songs about hipsters and boobs.

Lucy Smith and her enchanting ukulele.

Tan Soon Tiong Music is his own band.

Sounds Of Kites. Obviously, on a windy day, with a looming purple overcast.

Izzul Syafiq Mazlan wins the hat competition.

Unplugged Vol. 6

3rd March 2016: Unplugged Vol. 6 at Laundry Bar, The Curve! Here’s emcee and host Darren Teh.

First up: Jon Liddell! Apparently he played drums in a band that used to open for Dragon Red. Strangely I never got to see them!

Hameer Zawawi. Trying out something new, by accident.

Dragon Red. Bossman Landslyde.

Screamer and singer Adam Lobo.

Brandon does many things. This time around, he drums.

Camero. I still take time to recognize him with his new hairstyle.

“Professor” Amil has looked pretty much the same. We didn’t get to hear him rap, though.

Shot with the Sony Carl Zeiss Sonnar T* 135mm F1.8 ZA.

Here’s their tribute to the late Scott Weiland, an acoustic version of Stone Temple Pilots – Plush, with a groove.

Replacing The Last One Awake was Annatasha.

Wei-Ming on guitar.

Isaac also on guitar.

I quite like how the backlight turned out.

Interestingly, Annatasha performed with Estranged a month later, which was a big deal to her when she was 14. This makes me feel old, given that the very first gig I went to was at the original No Black Tie (No. 27, Jalan Mesui, where Rainforest Bed And Breakfast is now) and I first saw Estranged there. I was very impressed by the bassist, who was then slapping and popping on Chocolate Syrup. I went up to him after the gig and praised his dancy bass playing. That bassist was the late Alda Tan, and he played guitar in a band with Adam back in secondary school. I became a fan and came for about almost every Estranged show I could, learning of other underground bands while catching them perform at Paul’s Place, Jam Asia, and Laundry Bar, among others.

Adam would sometimes join Richael, Estranged’s vocalist, to scream along on Velocity. Alda later left Estranged to play bass for Dragon Red, reuniting with his schoolmate. Richael then joined Akademi Fantasia and became known as Rich AF (teehee) and the band exploded into the Malay mainstream with Itu Kamu. It makes me sad though that I don’t see their other songs get covered, as if they were a one-hit wonder. It also makes me wonder how I’ve not seen other underground bands really hit the mainstream the way they did – and yet, I still can’t put them in my mainstream bucket, due to my underground memories of them. Then again, does a band have to put itself (or be put) in a bucket? They did, after all, start in a music college, ICOM, and none of them are unapproachable rock stars. Heck, Landslyde and his brother C. Loco are friendly dudes despite formerly being part of the massive Poetic Ammo.

Open Mic @ Barlai #20

25th February 2016: Open Mic @ Barlai #20 at Barlai, Jalan Sin Chew Kee. Here’s host Shaneil Devaser!

Reening Lau, finally.

The F.O.I..

The crowd.

The fingerstyle Kim Lim.

The one with the song I recorded a video of. Yinthong Tan, whose mellifluous melodies had a French flavor to it, even if some of the songs were in Chinese. It wasn’t just me who was imagining having a croissant out in the open area of a cafe, with uneven brickwork on the floor.

Yinthong Tan – I Found You.

A chopping board for pedals.

Nicholas Sia brings grunge back.

Shot by Amelia.

Lucy Smith has some interesting ukulele rhythm.

Armand Tanzarian cannot shoegaze without shoes.

Alien Lipstick Fire has a catchy name.

Ending the night was Danial Alwie.

Feedback Open Mic Finale #2 2016

21st February 2016: Feedback Open Mic Finale #2 2016 at The Bee, Publika. First agenda of the day was serious business: “The Business of Music 101” by Jennifer Thompson.

This was on a lazy Sunday afternoon!

Then, “Songwriting” by Moonshine Productions, moderated by Reza Salleh and featuring Liyana Fizi, Aidil Rosli of Couple and Anna Chong. They also sang a few songs to illustrate how their songwriting concepts ended up in songs.

Rhythm For Beginners” by Paul Lau.

Liyana Fizi is cooler with shakers.

More random crowd shots.

Hameer having fun!

Fariz does not know if he wants a djembe.

Paul and the drum circle.

What They Don’t Teach You In Music School (And Will Get You Work)” by Az Samad.

I went for a walk and discovered a rhythm section goin’ on in Publika.

Then, the main thing, the finale, with emcee and host Reza Salleh.

Hameer often does emcee duty, too.

First up: Kyogg!

Blast from the past with Josh!

The affable Happy Fingers.

Kahlilfornia who brings this infectious stage energy.

Heavy Defusion.

Hello Luqman loves the loop, man.

Hello Riana Adams!

Jude Macson Bensing is just another CLEO Most Eligible Bachelor.

Sophia Andersen.

Aina Abdul always sings with a smile, and boy does that smile enhance her powerful vocals!

Andy, ever happy to play guitar for her.

David Soh with feels.

Zqames, with a most expressive vocalist.

Time to announce the winners! Third place, Kyogg.

Second place, Sophia Andersen.

First place, Aina Abdul. Happy Fingers and I witnessed her enchant the audience, and our expression was that of a Facebook smiley. You know, the one with hands over the mouth, fingers curled in, eyes slightly teary in amazement. I’d post exactly that smiley, if I could find it…