single of the week

Fifth Harmony ft. Ty Dolla $ign - Work From Home

 

today in history

 

album picks

Album Review: Lights Returns With Another Acoustic Rendition Album In 'Midnight Machines'
  • 1 start
  • 1 start
  • 1 start
  • 0 start
  • 0 start
Album Review: The Summer Set Recapture Their Energetic Pop Rock Sound With 'Stories For Monday'
  • 1 start
  • 1 start
  • 1 start
  • 0 start
  • 0 start
Album Review: M83 Channels The 80s Pop Culture Yet Again, But With Average Results In 'Junk'
  • 1 start
  • 1 start
  • 1/2 start
  • 0 start
  • 0 start
more album picks

accolade

World Bloggers And Social Media Awards
SBA 2014
SBA 2013
SBA 2012

 

 

join our team!

join our team!

Solid Death Cab For Cutie fans have waited 4 long years for the return of their favorite indie rock band. So, it wasn’t surprising when they paid our tiny island a visit last night as all suppressed emotions filled The Coliseum at Sentosa.

At exactly 8 o’clock in the evening, no more no less, Take Two took the stage. The night seemed to have been brighter despite the preceding sunset when girls repeatedly screamed, “Wooh!! You’re so cute!” as they swoon over the frontman’s vocals and, of course, his looks. The frontman, Paddy, sure has his own tactics in getting the crowd hype up for the main act, constantly asking the Death-Cab-anticipating audience to dance along to their psychedelic tunes.

However, despite the slight failure of his request, I looked around and saw the stoned crowd focused on guitarist Peng Sing as he flawlessly owned those “Adam Hann” like guitar riffs. My personal favorites, In Your Arms and Luna, were just as good as the first time I’ve heard them at Fort Canning Park. Take Two made great use of the short 30-minute set they were allocated. Definitely a band to watch out for (if you haven’t already!)

During the half hour of waiting for Death Cab For Cutie, the audience noticed Take Two’s humility as they helped pack up every instrument – from their own Yamaha drum set to the bassist’s small electric fan, which I presume is now a gig must-bring due to his unmatchable energy! You do need a bit of air to prevent sweat from dripping, eh?

After a couple of more minutes, lights were dimmed and eerie sounds of a vintage stereo started playing. This was the first time I’ve ever encountered such a unique opening gimmick and as this happened, Death Cab For Cutie entered the scene.

With no other greeting aside from their sweet smiles and waves, Death Cab For Cutie opened No Room In Frame with a light-hearted kick! The song’s unfamiliarity probably accounted for the slow start, but as soon as Crooked Teeth started playing, all hell broke lose. One memorable part was the ending of the bridge as everyone sang along, “My head is weak, my heart always speaks, before I know what it will say,” and following what I think is the most badass transition ever. With no exaggeration, I think Death Cab For Cutie is one of those rare rock bands which can both tug at your heartstrings at the same time managing to make you go on an intense rage dance.

Thanks to Ben Gibbard’s thought-provoking lyrics and the band’s sentimental melodies, I was able to live in my pretentious bubble again as I try to let every second of the moment sink in.

Though Death Cab For Cutie seem to appeal more to older millennials, I noticed as they fully stride corporate suits, the band does have a few teenage fans. What these two “generations” do have in common is their love for early 2000s music that seemed to resonate such a feel-good vibe. The band played as though they emitted a kind of positive energy that got fans responding so distinctly. I mean, there were ones who kept clapping, the ones who knew every word to every song, and the quiet ones who just wanted to live in the moment. Whatever it was, they were all blessed by Death Cab For Cutie’s ambient songs.

I watched Ben through my dust-covered glasses as he made a couple of comments regarding the heat and temporarily naming The Colesium “Republic of Death Cab For Cutie. This, of course, received cheers and laughter from the crowd of Singapore fans momentarily forgetting about their “Monday blues.”

The highly anticipated I Will Follow You Into The Dark sounded perfect live. With just Ben and his acoustic guitar, he brought the audience to an internal crying spree as we all sang along to the famous song. I sang as I observed Ben’s sweat dripping on his majestic black guitar, showering the instrument with every strum. I was deeply moved.

 

The night’s charmer, guitarist Dave Depper, came prepared with some cool guitar tricks you won’t usually see in regular gigs. We were left in awe and complete curiosity.

Every corner of The Colesium was completely drawn as the band played with such an intense emotion. Though Ben seem to have limited interaction with the audience, the band went beyond bland verbal communication by bringing us heartfelt lyrics and melodies much more worthy of every split second than mindless blabbers.

This gig made me more observant of how musicians’ act on stage – the bassist, Nick Harmer, closing his eyes almost the entire time or how every person on stage fully embodied the energy of each chord strummed and every kick of the beat. I left with an unexplainable contentment as I walked back to the train station and that after-gig feeling lingered in me. That’s when you know the show was good.

Dear Death Cab For Cutie, your melodies are still and will forever be softly soaring through our [Singapore/Hazy] atmosphere.

 

Setlist
No Room In Frame
Crooked Teeth 
Photobooth
Black Sun
The New Year 
The Ghosts Of Beverly Drive
Grapevine Fires
Little Wanderer 
Company Calls
Pictures In An Exhibition
What Sarah Said 
I Will Follow You Into The Dark 
Everything’s A Ceiling
I Will Posses Your Heart 
You Are A Tourist
Cath… 
Soul Meets Body
Bixby Canyon Bridge
 
Encore
Passenger Seat
Movie Script
Transatlanticism

 

Photo credit: WOAH Fest (facebook), kathkirana, doyoulookatmeweird, _welocin (instagram), symmetry entertainment

Anyone suffering from major PCD right now? We know we are.

Before we start discussing about all the details and everything that went down during 5 Seconds of Summer's Sounds Live Feels Live show here in Singapore, we want to say a huge thank you to all of you who enthusiastically participated in our official concert poster giveaway! We love your smiles and your passion!

Hours before the doors were even open, lines could be seen forming at the various entrances. We were thinking to ourselves, why is everyone queuing so early to get in? Isn't the entire Star Theatre filled with seats? There isn't even a mosh pit... we concluded that's just the way the 5SOS FAM rolls.

The excitement level rose exponentially as fans decked in 5SOS T-shirts with signs expressing their love for the band in their hands started to fill the Star Theatre on all three tiers when doors open at around 7pm.

Expressing their excitement in the best way they know possible, the 5SOS FAM screamed their heads off every few minutes when a song that isn't even by 5SOS starts to play on the big screen or just from the speakers. Even when someone from the stage crew goes up on stage to set up something, the whole place just goes insane.

As per usual, people tried to get a better view of the stage than their seats could offer. Fans started gathering at the spaces near the railings and barricades only to get chased back to their seats by the security ushers.

Soon after, We Will Rock You by Queen started to echo throughout the theatre and everyone clapped in unison to probably one of the world's most famous rhythm. The song ended and BAM all the lights went off. Deafening screams together with flashing lights greeted the reason why everyone gathered in the same place that night.

Michael could be seen on the keys with the rest of the band playing their own instruments rocking out to the intro of Carry On. By this time, the word "seats" didn't exist in anyone's vocabulary as everyone was on their feet welcoming the next song, Hey Everybody!

During Money, all we could really think about at the chorus was that 5SOS really did take a lot of our money. Most of our money for the month was spent on merchandise and all things 5SOS. Y'all are probably guilty of spending a lot on the tickets, the album, merch and VIP passes right!

Disconnected from the outside world, the 5SOS FAM listened carefully to every single word the band uttered. "Singapore, how are we doing tonight!!!" were the opening words from the band's lead singer, Luke Hemmings. After which, he asked how everyone was doing by the tiers. This being their first show in Singapore, the band thanked everyone as it was very special to them that so many people came out to their show.

Michael Clifford, the guitarist and also the joker of the band, teased the crowd that he actually played here before with Steve (who's Steve?) before going on to say that he did the most Australian thing before going on stage. He ate a vegemite sandwich and his stomach was apparently feeling a little weird at that moment. Oh, poor mikey. We hope you're better now!

Shot a music video, dressed up as superheroes. Yes, the next song they performed was their second single from their debut album, Don't Stop. Heartache On The Big Screen followed as their sixth song of the night before the bassist of 5SOS, Calum Hood, mentioned that this was one of his favourite shows. (Do they say that at every show?) Luke continued by surveying who bought Sounds Good Feels Good and apologised for taking so long, specifically 4 and a half years to get here.

The 5SOS FAM obviously did not Waste the Night as we listened to Luke pouring his soul into the song with the band's Drummer, Ashton Irwin, finishing it off with a solo moment. One by one, Ash + Luke + Cal left the stage, leaving Michael as a Castaway. (How smart! We see what y'all did there guys) Mr. Clifford opened the first verse of Jet Black Heart with the spotlight on him as his band mates came back up in time to join him for the chorus.

"Let me hear you scream if you're in trouble for being here tonight!" There were some pretty loud screams that followed after Calum made that statement. Oh wow, the 5SOS FAM is one rebellious fandom. (sneaky sneaky) He also begin to say that when he was backstage, he wanted to sit on one of the boxes thinking it was closed and fell right into the box! Luke joined in the "new segment" of the show by saying that he managed to go to the toilet and pee-ed in time to come back on stage. "You know what I did backstage?" Michael asked jokingly. (He was on stage the whole time.)

On a 5SOS tour show, it is definitely a must to read the signs that the fans have spent so much time and effort to prepare. So the band started playing some "sign reading music". And if you did not bring a sign, you could just raise up a peace sign! Signs like, "Damn Daniel" and "We love you more than chicken rice" were the lucky few that were being read aloud by the guys.

Amnesia and Beside You followed before Luke asked if the crowd would mind if they play one more slow, mid-tempo song before we rock out together. And mentioned that the next song, Vapor, is his favourite one that 5SOS has ever released.

Ashton: "This is the part where I can finally talk. I've been thinking of what to say for about 55 to 1 hour. And all I really want to say is can you sing? Can you dance? Can you jump?" Basically the crowd just screamed at all those questions. He also asked, "How many of you have been to a 5SOS concert?", "Oh, that's like 15 of you." Wow, these 15 people are seriously lucky enough to be able to watch them in concert in another country! "And how many of y'all haven't?" and almost everyone screamed. "Sing the next song with us as loud as you can and we'll come back here ASAP." As you probably already guessed everyone sang very loudly to End Up Here which led to Voodoo Doll and Good Girls.

This next part has got to be one of the highlights of the night. Michael shouted, "SINGAPORE!!!" and made a farting noise into the microphone and continued by saying, "I wrote this song about you." He started to sing an improvised song that goes, "Sing, sing, sing, sing, sing, sing, Singapore." and the whole band joined in. The crowd went wild. We were so amazed by that talent. Ash made it very clear that it is their song and if anyone were to publish that song before them, he's gonna fine that person. (Oh Ash!)

It was clearly the band's favourite song of the night because they said so themselves and also because they just kept singing "Singapore" to the tune of Permanent Vacation as they forgot the real words to the first part of the song.

What I Like About You ended with the guys standing at every end of the stage, all looking at Ashton and playing that last note real tight as a band. And when you thought that the screams could not get any louder, it did when She's Kinda Hot played.

The entire show ended with the band's very first single together, She Looks So Perfect, where they gave it their all with their famous high jump-turns on stage! By this time, the crowd still had so much energy in them and was singing their lungs away. Michael threw his guitar pick into the audience and Ashton passed his drumsticks to some lucky fan while the rest threw towels.

Obviously those who were not close enough to catch any of those things went to the front of the stage after the show to get their hands on anything they could find that were touched by the guys. That includes, the pieces of set-lists and water bottles which the stage crew so willingly helped to give out. Aww!

OH WHAT A NIGHT! You guys seriously rocked that stage and it will definitely be one to be recorded in our book as one of the best nights ever!!! Please do come back soon! Singapore loves you!

Do let us know by tweeting us your favourite moment during 5 Seconds of Summer's Sounds Live Feels Live show here in Singapore! Let's get through this PCD together as a 5SOS FAM!

Setlist:

1. Carry On (Intro)
2. Hey Everybody!
3. Money
4. Disconnected
5. Don't Stop
6. Heartache On The Big Screen
7. Waste the Night
8. Castaway
9. Jet Black Heart
10. Amnesia
11. Beside You
12. Vapor
13. End Up Here
14. Voodoo Doll
15. Good Girls
16. Permanent Vacation
17. What I Like About You
18. She's Kinda Hot
19. She Looks So Perfect

Spin or Bin Music is proud to be the Official Music Blog for the 5 Seconds of Summer's Sounds Live Feels Live World Tour 2016 in Singapore!

Photo Credit: Spin or Bin Music, Aloysius Lim/ Live Nation Lushington  & Universal Music Singapore

On paper, the sixth instalment of St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival promised to be the biggest one yet.

Roping in a whopping 22 acts (including a last minute RSVP by coolest kids on the block, The 1975), any misgivings involving hipsters, their unbelievably encyclopaedic knowledge and utter lack of public hygiene were promptly forgotten in favour of the musical smorgasbord laid out for all to feast on.

In reality however, such an oversized buffet – more akin perhaps to Laneway’s larger international counterparts – necessitated several thumb-sucking inconveniences; all part of the festival-going experience, of course. With the addition of the brand new White Room, The Meadow (and its surrounding areas) now housed a total of four stages. Any individual attempt then, to document the 12-hour event in its entirety would vary according to one’s willingness to drag themselves through the throng for that one act some music publication deemed “You Should Check Out” and let’s be honest – the weather.

Clashes were therefore unavoidable as were the unfortunate circumstances surrounding DIIV’s emergency pull-out (and song-writing whiz Tobias Jesso Jr.'s premature one), sadly depriving us of the band’s muscly dreamscapes which would’ve been just in time for the super recent release of their sophomore LP, Is the Is Are. 

Clawing their way to the top, local experimental rockers Riot !n Magenta were tasked with the responsibility of stoking the metaphorical fire atop the Bay Stage, drawing quizzical looks from those uninformed of the late line-up switch (NB: the official app doesn’t update too well). Despite the delayed start, a handful of early-birds were sufficiently enthralled by Eugenia Yip’s jerky movements which, combined with Ritz Ang’s hypnotic beats, stirred some movement amidst the sleepy midday lull.

A palatable appetiser, it wasn’t until Cheats descended upon the adjacent Garden Stage with their sunny brand of guitar-driven anthems that the slowly-growing crowd got truly warmed up.  Possibly a symptom of the ominous clouds looming in the horizon that threatened to herald Rainway 2.0, the 8-piece thriller from Manila imbued a much-needed sense of urgency with rousing tunes such as Again, Professor Manny? and the breezy debut of Talks during which the charismatic Jim Bacarro urged audience members to call out “the animal” within themselves. Flanked by vocalists Saab Magalona and Candy Gamos, the syrupy harmonies the ladies provided for the likes of Summer boded well with Bacarro’s crispier tones.                

Splitting time between Violent Soho and East India Youth, it came as a pleasant surprise to discover that the former enjoys Blink-182’s stamp of approval especially when frontman Luke Boerdam sports a DeLonge-esque drawl. Coming across as the secret love-child of The Front Bottoms and Smashing Pumpkins, Boerdam’s occasional yowls bristled with irresistible torment as riff master James Tidswell busted out the afternoon’s most crunching chords. Similarly, William Doyle pulled no punches – sweating it out as a one man army, constantly manning his array of equipment on the Cloud Stage. Situated in what was unmistakably a parking lot, the almost DIY setting showcased the Mercury Prize nominee in his element, dressed (quite brazenly) in a white, long sleeve shirt seamlessly transitioning from one hit (Take Away) to the next (Carousel). Doyle might sound mellow on record but IRL, the Bournemouth native is a manic multi-instrumentalist with the capacity to melt faces right off.

In spite of the sweltering heat, many had already began to swarm the Garden Stage in anticipation for the top-billed solo act, Thundercat. His sweet falsetto crooning and constant grin fell onto a swaying crowd who was enamoured by his charisma and nonchalance. 

Sprinkled with careless swagger in each motion, The Internet's Syd tha Kyd (real name Sydney Bennett) took the baton dressed in a simple striped hoodie and nike trousers, flanked by two equally enthused hypemen. Halfway through the set, she couldn't help but join in the hot topic of the festival - which was, well duh, the weather. "It is hot!" she concluded. 

It is no wonder that local band, Cashew Chemists, is often referred to as the representatives of Singapore's rock 'n' roll scene. The five-man band lived up to the prestige as they charmed the main field with a series of bright and catchy tunes, such as Over You and Feel Amazing. Their retro ensemble of intricate paisley and floral button-downs served as a perfect complement to the concoction of twangy guitar riffs over the bluesy bass vibrations. Like cherry on top, frontman Yuji Kumagai spurred a revival of the classic rock sound, drawing analogous influences from the likes of Alex Turner from Arctic Monkeys. 

All was well up until it was Battles' time to shine. 'I've got no electricity up here', insisted guitarist/keyboardist Ian Williams as the band faced technical glitches right from the beginning. While it took some time for the trio to get back on track, drummer John Stanier wasted no time and took advantage of the situation by distracting the audience with a transient sequence of drum solos. His efforts didn't go unnoticed as the crowd cheered on with encouragement. By the time all technicalities were under control, he was already dripping with sweat as the band finally began with the set that they had originally planned for. 

Though they were only allocated an hour, the return of Manchester’s The 1975 was well worth the wait. Doused in neon lights, the stage was set aglow in a dance of purple and white. The atmospheric set was led by the sleek Matthew Healy who looked straight out of a fashion magazine. The band made the best out of their limited stage time, sending good vibes through crowd-favourites such as Chocolate and Girls. As cheeky as we have all known him to be, Matt took his shirt off later, sending the meadows into a collective scream. 

 

Snooze time came as Beach House performed under cascading lights of the Garden Stage. "Thank you for welcoming us to your jungle," said the dreamy frontman Victoria Legrand. It's not that I hold anything against the duo (I really like some of their songs, I really do), but rather the dim lighting that didn't save my drooping eyelids after a long and tiring day. It also didn't help that those watching the band from the screens could only see black patches. In any case, Beach House was an apt intermission with their whimsical and soothing melodies between the other upbeat acts that night.

Thank heavens for Grimes who pretty much picked up the energy where it had been almost non-existent after Beach House. We had the privilege of seeing Grimes off-stage during the media interviews. With hair still wet from after a shower, she was quirky, jovial and seemed like a genuinely nice person whom you would want to be friends with. On-stage, she was like an magnified version of her off-stage self who held nothing back of her eccentric persona and gripping choreography. Prancing across the stage and then back to her synthesizers, Grimes gave the impression of a gazelle in the woods. Before I knew it, her far-too-short set had come to an end with Kill V. Maim

"Is anybody else sweating?" Chvrches' Lauren Mayberry asked the crowd before exclaiming "Me too!". Arguably the most awaited act of the day, Chvrches was a real treat to watch. Unfazed by the heat, the trio put up a show far beyond expectations. Their entire set was captivating and exceptional despite Lauren struggling at times with the tangled cables. Lauren's magnetism was at its peak that night as all eyes trailed after her while the band played a mix of old and new hits. 

Friendships were put to the test amid what was the most deplorable clash of the festival between Flume at the Bay Stage and Purity Ring over at the Cloud Stage. Compromises were grudgingly made and groups were reluctantly split as a result of the existential dilemma: 'who is more worthy?'. As soon as Chvrches' electrifying set came to an end, the masses were forced to make their final decision then and there. While a majority stuck out in the meadow for the Australian EDM producer, a rebellious throng made their way to catch the Canadian synthop duo. It came as a difficult decision to pick the latter, but soon unfolded to be the right one as Flume started his set late (i.e. I got to see both!). 

Make no assuming thought about Purity Ring's comparatively smaller stage. The labyrinthine stage set was constructed with the purpose of wowing the audience, and so it did. Donned head to toes in white underneath a translucent poncho, Megan James presented a futuristic glimpse with her entrance of Stanger Than Earth. Even as he stood behind the pedestal, Corin Roddick glistened with allure as he took charge of the instrumentals. 

As the last show of the night, the burden on Flume's part was real. How it was possible that he could make one momentarily forget how tired and sunburnt he/she was, speaks of his undeniable skills of hyping up a crowd with his music. While being focused on his equipment most of the time, he would look up once in a while to check out the audience. In front of a huge display of psychedelic visuals, Flume continued to impress as the masses jumped and waved in response.

Text: Solihin and Donwei
Photo credits: Spin Or Bin Music

It would be an understatement to say that the British quartet, The Vamps, captured our wild hearts on a warm Tuesday night at The Coliseum. Though I don’t consider myself an avid fan, the group did leave an impact that touched my former fangirl heart. What others would typically describe as a normal school day turned out to be “one of the best days” of our lovely Singaporean Vampettes' lives.

Just a couple of minutes after sunset, American newcomers and opening act, The Tide, lit up the stage with a cover of Walk The Moon’s Shut Up and Dance. As the song has been my jam ever since, I did not hesitate to sing as loud as I could, leaving me with a rapid heart rate just after the first song. This all happened as my sister took embarrassed glances at me while whispering, “I’m saving my energy for The Vamps.” This was perhaps the mindset of all the fangirls around me as I jumped in a sea of a still crowd. Nevertheless, most people in the audience were still very welcoming despite not being familiar with The Tide’s original songs such as Young Love.

Just when I thought I was totally over boybands, came the contagious fangirl feels that have been the driving force of my sister’s life. The Vamps rekindled that tiny spark in my chest as they came on stage. Charming smiles and waves were met with piercing screams and hundreds of arms lifted up high, everyone too absorbed in capturing the moment on their phones.

Devouring energy took over Resorts World Sentosa as Brad Simpson kicked off the first line in the hit song, Rest Your Love. Nothing could make me feel more nostalgic than being around innocent secondary school girls singing and screaming their favorite song in unison. I did feel like I was teleported back to my "tween" years as The Vamps played Last Night.

With backpacks on the floor and portable chargers in hand, I’m pretty sure most of them even came straight from school. Talk about DEDICATION! Their eager anticipation exceeded expectations when the band covered the much-awaited Uptown Funk/Shake It Off/We Can’t Stop mash up followed by Tris’ Drum solo.

My personal favorite, I Found A Girl, did resonate Connor’s romantic backstory especially with Brad’s mesmerizing vocals and curls that were made more striking with sweat. If you think those already received deafening screams, imagine Brad joking about living in Singapore as the boys “do need to get tanned.” Let’s not forget about the tear-jerking solo acoustic version of A Million Words by the charming frontman.

At first sight, you might think of The Vamps as “just another boyband” with catchy tunes, killer smiles, and cute puppy eyes. But the British lads can definitely play, and this was evident in Oh Cecilia and Wake Up!

Despite the stuffiness in the hall, fangirls proved that they were more than just “people lurking on the internet.” If you think fangirls can’t mosh, think again. It was pretty touching to see kids finally seeing their favorite band live when a few months ago they were completely oblivious of the fact that someday the boys will know of their existence. All those intense tweeting, reblogging, and cyberstalking were worth the effort. With this, it’s accurate to say that The Vamps left a memorable mark in Singapore for their first ever show made even special with devoted fangirls.

Did you miss the concert? Were you buried in homework last night? Don’t worry!

Here are 3 HIGHLIGHTS from The Vamps Singapore Debut!

 

1.     James wearing an “I <3 SG” shirt all throughout the show

 

2.     Tris rapping "Volcano"

 

3.     Fangirls swarming around Brad

 

Setlist:

Rest Your Love
Cheater
Somebody To You
Uptown Funk/Shake It Off/We Can't Stop
Tristan's Drum Solo
Last Night
I Found A Girl
Wild Heart
Volcano
Can We Dance
Cecilia
Wake Up

 

Photocredit: Live Nation Lushington SG (facebook), Alvin Ho, valenciakwek, nicshields, mhdayatr (instagram)

It first began in *SCAPE Warehouse (now known as The Ground Theatre, approx. capacity of 500), where J-rock band ONE OK ROCK held their 2012 debut concert in Singapore. The quartet, formed by Taka (vocals), Toru (guitar), Ryota (bass guitar) and Tomo (drums), returned the very next year with their Who Are You?? Who Are We?? tour, held at The Coliseum (approx. capacity of 1,000). Yesterday, they took the last stop of their 35xxxv5 tour to Fort Canning Park (6,500 strong attendance).

Not sure about you guys, but I see a pattern here in the increasing venue sizes, indicating the band's ever-growing fanbase in Singapore. As one might be able to deduce, there is almost a 500% increase in the number of concert-goers within the span of slightly more than two years. Incredible but understandable, as the band's enduring rise in popularity comes with no surprise. Apart from their prominence within the J-rock scene, OOR has also made their mark in pop punk by touring alongside Tonight Alive and Sleeping With Sirens across Europe and America.

Perhaps it was the collective prayers of OOR fans that were answered, as the weather was very much in our favour that night. It was cooling and unusual of Singapore's otherwise hot and humid climate. After setting foot in the park, I found a nice spot to sit and wait for the next hour or so. I watched on with a sparkle in my eye as young Japanese families, all dressed in their newly-purchased tour t-shirts, run across the field excitedly.

Reinforcing the stereotype of Japanese punctuality, the band took the stage just a minute or two past 8pm. There were not many changes in their fashion choices over the years. Similar to when they were here the last time, Ryota performed shirtless while the rest were donned in oversized muscle tanks.

Having been the opening band for the likes of Yellowcard and All Time Low, OOR were no strangers to stirring up a crowd. By the time they moved on to their second song, Take Me To The Top, the audience was already at full force. The band maintained the high energy level all through Memories to Stuck In The Middle, before mellowing down with Last Dance. The spotlight was then handed over to Toru, Ryota and Tomo who got the throngs headbanging to the intense harmony of instrumentals.

Early into the set, Taka called for a circle pit. As I was far off back in the park, it didn't seem like anything was happening from where I was standing (although according to a Facebook post, a number managed to form a mini pit during Cry Out). Moments later, he called for a wall of death. Unfortunately, with the same result. Taka's disappointment was apparent as he made a desperate plea, amongst a stream of expletives, for the crowd to move back and split up before giving up entirely.

Some have commented on the event's Facebook page how they tried to initiate a pit but were stopped by others who complained about the pushing. Assuming that the complaining bunch were dedicated fans of the band who queued for a long time to be in front that day, it does come across a little strange that they did not participate in executing what was customary of the band's concerts. 

One of my favourites that night was the sentimental performance of Heartache with Toru on the acoustic guitar. Taka serenaded in a mix of English and Japanese, as the crowd sang along in perfect unison. The band left the stage after a spirited performance of Mighty Long Fall, before coming back on with a four-piece encore that ended with their older hits, No Scare and Kanzen Kankaku Dreamer.

Despite not being able to see a pit or wall as he had hoped for, Taka still saw the good in the audience as he promised the band's return to our sunny island soon. Perhaps we might see OOR perform on a bigger scale at a larger venue, such as Suntec International Convention & Exhibition Hall (approx. capacity of 6,000) or even the Singapore Indoor Stadium (approx. capacity of 12,000), for their next concert. We'll see. 

 

Photo credits: Aloysius Lim for LAMC Productions