Our first issue is out now

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“Nothing much in this first issue wherein you can read 104 pages on A5 size about your favourite local acts based on gig reviews, album reviews, band interviews as well as articles written by Karim Abdullah and Adam Juhann. For those who are in Ipoh, you may grab the fanzine at V9 concept shop ( nearby Gerbang Malam along Jalan Tawil Azhar) that is taken care by Wan Billy from Bahajang. For purchasing or any enquiries about us, do contact us through theaksaracommune@gmail.com or via our Facebook page – The Aksara Commune.”

The Aksara Commune
RM 6.00
104 pages on A5 size
Band Interviews
Articles
Gig Reviews
Album reviews

RM 2.00 Normal postage
RM7.00 Poslaju (West Malaysia) / RM10 Poslaju (East Malaysia)

Article

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For years on end, you are able to divide Malaysians into two groups. Let us call the first group, Group A. Now, Group A are those who could not stand the Malaysian music scene, for many a reason. Some feel that Malay songs are forever subpar to international artists; some might think that the local musicians lack imagination and talent, while others opine that good Malaysian music is just hard to find. I will admit that I was once from Group A, because I did not know where to start to find the good ones. Sure, I was exposed enough to the likes of Hujan, Pesawat, OAG, One Buck Short and Butterfingers, where they all fell underneath the Alternative Rock umbrella. But after awhile, I felt that these bands were not going far, musically at least.

Hujan just came out with their latest album Jika Sempat, and I felt like they were only rehashing their “trademark” sound, which was somewhat true considering that it was composed entirely of reworked old songs except the opener and closer of the album. Butterfingers did show a bit of maturing and experimentation as they progressed through their active years, but it is unfortunate that they broke up for whatever reason they had. Luckily, there are still creative music acts willing to go an extra mile in their music, such as Pitahati, The Venopian Solitude and Iqbal M. For those who are not familiar with the local music scene an you are wondering where to start, you could visit thewknd’s YouTube channel to discover Malaysian and Southeast Asian independent musicians (I don’t work for them, I am in no way in debt to them that made me promote them but hey, it is one of the places where I started.)

Now Group B is somewhat similar to Group A, only is that you have to switch the words ‘local(s)’ and ‘Malaysian’ to ‘international’, ‘overseas’ or ‘English’. You like the The Clash? Fuck you, The A.C.A.B. is better. You want good dance-punk music? Throw away your Franz Ferdinand CDs and play M. Shariff’s Keindahan Pantai on repeat until your eardrums melt away to show that God does exist and He is just granting you His mercy. The likes of Group B once made it hard for me to enjoy local music openly. I mean, give me a break, man. I am only getting started. Nonetheless, because I am always for good music, regardless of origin, I did find bands I like.

I think people who belong to Group A and B should try to be more open. Sure, you may be able to embrace different kinds of genres, such as Tibetan throat singing, noise and cockpop, so it tends to be ironic that you cannot embrace the idea that there are people willing to try new things, like listening to the music that you happen to like as well. How are we to permeate new local music if there are those who refuse to share it with the rest? There are plenty of reasons to why it is hard for a local musician to make an honest living, and one of them is lack of exposure. You like a song monoloQue just uploaded? Share it. Oh, you really enjoy Reset to Zilch but there is no one to enjoy it with? Share it, even if that person is only into Coldplay or Foo Fighters.

 

 

 

Online Session W/ Piri Reis

“…communication is the key, that’s what make us closer each day. We are grateful to have chemistry from one another.”
– Piri Reis

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Fast riffs, loud and anger, the Shah Alam emoviolence – Piri Reis has set themselves actively playing at any shows around the country recently. Full blast with tight musical structure, they will be on tour in Japan around September 2016  and it’s good to see more our local acts to perform outside of the country. After Blood On Wedding Dress, Dirgahayu, Osmantikos sort of had performed in Japan, now is their turn to share the Malaysian vibe of hardcore punk among the local Japanese. In this interview session, they had shared a pinch of flavor of the stories and experiences on what is it Piri Reis is actually.

Q: Piri Reis is a combination from few bands with different genres too. How do you guys suits with each other?

A: I believe it’s because we all love and listen to this kind of genre. Having bandmates from different kind of. Genre also is beneficial to us as we can experiment with the melody itself. And communication is the key, that’s what make us closer each day. We are grateful to have chemistry from one another.

Q: Who is actually the mastermind behind all the song’s composition and the lyrics content?

A: We would like to say that everyone is a part of something in the band, especially the song. One of us can came out with the raw tunes first and everyone will follow the flow until a song is formed. In terms of lyrics, usually Mira will do it and everyone will give a thought about it.

Q: Tell us a little bit about your equipment, sort of  the effects, guitar’s features and those kind of things?

 

A: We don’t use many pedals and stuffs but yeah hahaha,

  • Arwith : Stratocaster Guitar, Boss Metalzone.
  • Farhan : Fender Jazzmaster, Ibanez Tubescreamer, Boss Tuner
  • Jaka : Fender Jazz Bass MIJ, Proco Rat 2, Korg Pitchblack Chromatic Pedal Tuner
  • Fakhri : Tamburo Snare, Cadesom Cymbal, Pearl Paddle.

Q: What do you expect or hope from any events that you have performed or upcoming, in terms of space,facilities and crowds such as?

A: We don’t have any demand or expectation in terms of space or facilities as we only play for fun. We appreciate if they have a space for us to play as we all know everyone is struggling to give their best for people to have fun. In terms of crowd we always hope they will enjoy our set and have fun watching us perform, and love our song. And the most important thing is we had fun performing.

Q: Talking about the process from your demo untiL 10 inches split  with Coma Regalia, how it was started  until it has been done?

A: From the early days , the band already wrote 4 songs , we wrote another 3 songs for the Coma Regalia split and recorded in the same session as demo , initially the Coma Regalia split should be only 3 songs from our side because the label Middleman records want to release a 9” vinyl release but due to the overprice for the 9” vinyl the label decided to make a 10” and that when we have to added one more songs for the split which is – ‘When Life Hand You Grenade’ from the demo.

Q: You guys will be having a tour Japan alongside with ACxDC (California Powerviolence), Tiala (Tokyo Jazzcore) plus many more on this upcoming September. So tell us how do you guys make it from the beginning until end?

A: Basically, it all started from just casual chat among us. We always wanted to go further and we took the casual chat into something more serious. It’s frightening but it’s something that we know we must do it once in a lifetime because why not? From there, Arwith starts to contact a few people there and we started discussing through email and luckily Shiro from Sto Cosi Cosi and his friends, like Yuichi and Minoru are kind enough to help us, plan the road tour, setup the show and even touring with us until now. We are really thankful. In monetary terms, we must admit it is quite hard because of the currency and price in Japan is expensive but we gotta do what we gotta do.

Q: How do you view the Japanese local acts then and now?

A: We must admit Japanese local acts are always awesome and move forward from time to time. They don’t just stay at one place, they grow. As we also adore many bands from Japan such as Killie and Tiala and also other genre such as Toe and Melt Banana. They are just skilled and perfect.

Q: Any further plans; changes or improvement in terms of sound for Piri Reis?  

A: After Japan Tour 2016, we have a few plans to release new stuff but it’s all still under process. We are still going to jam together to polish up our skill and performance as well as creating new sounds. We think for improvement in terms of sound maybe just from the aspect of technical and skill as we know we are quite lack of it, but still sustain the same genre and sound. There’s always a room for improvement and we always want to do better.

Q: Last words?

A: We would like to say thank you Karim for this interview. And thank you to everyone that listens to us, it means a lot. Keep supporting everyone that want to do better for themselves because we do!

 

Gig Review

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Event: Merdeka Secret Show
Organised by: Bodysurf Music + WMF Solution + Khizanat + Lovedotcandy + Bandtunes
Date&Time: 30 August 2016 // 8.00 P.M ++
Venue: Khizanat Ipoh
Admission Fees: RM 10.00

The shows started at 9.15 P.M where Ippie Gomas became the opening act for the show. Emceed by Mohd Jayzuan, crowds were really impressive where numbers of them were quite considerable. Many balloons with colourful LED lights had arisen the joy to party all over the night.

Ippie Gomas

A one man show, Amer Anuar  gave a supersonic mellow-swift ,soft and tender. Hence, all the songs written by him had made the night full of lullaby.

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Radiowave

The simply charming and flourish major chords, Radiowave is the next generation power pop based in Ipoh that depart the hopeless romantic soul. They spoutly the love among the audiences with happy vibe and 70s post punk melodic. Neither seems as exactly British Pop nor a typical alternative pop band, their sounds mixed up with UK typical British Pop with American Indie Rock styles.

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Bloodymary

With the new essence of musical structure, Bloodymary were more intendly towards post grunge vibe like Foo Fighters concomitant added with few pedal effects. Not anymore the silverchair’s next to be, but this is, the new era of bloodymary. They catastrophe with new sound within their few old songs such as ‘Behind The Tears’, ‘Waterfall’ and this is the evolution of music as Chris Cornell did a changed from Soundgarden to Audioslave or Dave Grohl from Nirvana to Foo Fighters. Different sound and pattern of musical structure, Bloodymary is not anymore a non typical grunge  with just distortion and simple scale riffs.

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Shizuka Ben Aman

Pop and roll, nothing more. Shizuka just being what they are since then and now. If you ever heard The Zozi from Singapore, both sound of these two bands might be similar. Well, while they played ‘Redline 95’, it is a truly memorable masterpiece they ever had, especially among the crowds who was born between the decade of 70s until 90s.

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Harmacy

Prominently one of the early Indie Rock circles in Ipoh which mainly influenced by Eric’s Trip and Polvo for instance, Harmacy had brought a perfect showmanship despite Muney, the Harmacy’s vocalist had asked Taqwa; Radiowave’s vocalist to join them as temporary bassist and taught him the songs they will be playing right immediately on the stage during the show. That’s the funny part of them but who cares by the way since they are really tight at any shows from then until now.

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Couple

Well, the pop says dance, dance and dance and they were really suits with American party style. Couple as we used to see at any shows especially at the concert is much different compared with the gig shows. Chaotic, crowd surfing, took up the microphone and sing along altogether among the crowds it is something fun that we should be sharing together closely. They are malaysian fuzzy pop that we should proud and remark all the time. Kudos !

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Sadly, the local hometown heroes, SOFT cannot make it to the show. While the crowds were mingling around outside the venue after Couple had finished their performances, crowds were wondering which  secret band the organisers are referring to despite they have stated on the flyer above but in the end no any bands after Couple actually.  Overall, it is been a long time Ipoh does not held any Indie Rock shows since it became a phenomenon for a while back then in 2008. Munching day by day, Merdeka Secret Show could be a revival or initial to spark up the Indie Rock Scene in Ipoh despite few new acts from Ipoh such as Radiowave, Ippie Gomas are on their way to bloom up with new materials.

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Album Review

001

The Electric Ape In Stereo – ‘We Come In Peace’

The EP ‘We Come In Peace’ in tape format were released by Rumah Horror and Toothache Splinter has its own pattern in every  tracks they had featured in this EP. The layout and cover were designed by Shaze had depicted the nature scenery concomitant with the post rock essence, in terms of what they have stated the genre they are into. Comprising six tracks which also recorded at Dysmedia Production in this EP, there are;

  • Human Change History Remain
  • A Moment To Remember
  • Slipped Across The Sky
  • Earth is 6.0
  • The Day The Music Died
  • Playing Chess With Death

With simple pentatonic riffs added with few effects, they have uplift themselves into typical patterns of experimental rock. After Reset To Zilch and This Is Atlantis from my perspectives who also have succeed to inflicted the eargasm among listeners, The Electric Ape In Stereo is one of the choice in terms of new band that you need to check out. Mild harsh, more emo and not too mellow, every songs are likely an episode for every  stories they want to impart. It’s like an abstract art, too subjectives to define more. Probaly I could describe this EP as ‘short dramatical episodes’ with different sub stories based on the major title ‘We Come In Peace’ in every tracks that found in this EP. To purchase the tape, you may drop your enquiries to :

https://www.facebook.com/toothiesadventure/
https://www.facebook.com/rumahhorror/

Gig Review

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Event: Emotive Sundaze
Organised by: Seducers & Sinners.Co
Date&Time: 7 August 2016 // 7.30 P.M ++
Venue: Rainhouse Music Studio, Ipoh.
Admission Fees: RM 10.00

The show started around 8.00 P.M where crowds began to appear and Tapestry became the opening band for the show. Lots of stuff were there – CDs, LPs, cassettes and shirts brought by Talib (Revulsion Records), Arwith (Utarid Distro) and also from members of Long Live The Empire with their new releases EP.

Tapestry

Became the opening act for the show, the 3 pieces band from Singapore, Tapestry are comprising Syed Hafiz, Md Fashhan and Fhamy. Since the last 4 years I watched Fhamy and Hafiz at Rainhouse Music Studio Ipoh with their previous emoviolence band – Pathos, I was really eager to catch up them back on stage this time for their mini tour called “North End Tour” with Piri Reis (Shah Alam emoviolence) and Long Live The Empire (Singapore finest dream pop catcher) in Ipoh. Mainly influenced by mid 90’s emo rock band, they reminded me of Chris Simpson’s voices from Mineral and The Gloria Record. It is not exactly same as the Chris’s voices by the way, but Hafiz  make it lo-fi and mellow vocal with his Tapestry and that is their own aesthetic actually. When you listen to their latest releases, you may heard it’s a simple typical 90’s emo rock but eventually when you are watching them on live performance, you will feel the eargasm until it buzz your eardrum. With tight drum rolling and perfectly strumming by the guitarist, it was totally a blast. Any enquiries or to purchase their latest releases “I Hope You Never Find Me” either LP or cassette format, Tapestry are reachable through:

Email: musictapestrysg@gmail.com
Twitter:@tapestrymusical
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/tapestrysingapore
Bandcamp: http://sgtapestry.bandcamp.com/

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EF’IL

They played as if they were on the big stage during the show, inflicted the emotional and catharsis, plus they are really heavily with their riffs. Customly tuned for the guitar, that is what make them are so special. Noise, emo, violence, hit up your emotional and possessed your norma living for about 20 minutes. That is EF’IL. You may contact them through:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/efil.mys/
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/eefil
Email: efilgaze@gmail.com

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Social Circuit

When I first heard of their demo that consist of 3 tracks, it churned out my mind and make my feelings so unpleasant. Feels to throw away cake on people’s faces, but I don’t have any guts anyway. With songs of Slither, Stuck and Slip Away, it’s a mixed essence of emo, hardcore punk with the clean voices. Not a typical pop punk you used to listen through MTV, but this is the mid 90s sub product that could be a good reference for you though. For fans of Sunny Day Real Estate, The Get Up Kids, Taking Back Sunday, they remain the sounds same as the band that I stated above. A conservative pop punk outfit, Social Circuit revived the 90s back. Founded in april 2016, this pop punk outfit have released their first demo two months after their establishments (according to their Bandcamp’s page) and it’s an impressive achievement for a new band. Any enquiries, you may contact them through:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/socialcircuitband/home
Instagram: http://instagram.com/socialcircuitband
Bandcamp: https://socialcircuitband.bandcamp.com/
Email: socialcircuitband@gmail.com

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Long Live The Empire

Mild and easy listening, this Singapore progressive emo rock have recently released their EP called “Ten Thousand Years” comprising 11 tracks. Nevertheless, their musical structure is full of inspiring and makes the audiences to dance in the rain like a free man ever. Futhermore, they remind me of few alternative rock bands like Mansun, The Great Spy Experiment, No Age and Suede. That night was really looks harmony with full of love and hopeless romantic though through their lyrics especially for two songs; ‘Waiting For February’ and ‘Cigarettes’. Thus, I smoke the love of ‘Cigarettes’ actually through their mellow melody. Upon catharsis and pity aroused by them, they had set sailed little bit noise with their riffs too. Not too clean and not too noisy, just a mild progressive rock with some dreamy pop essence. Any enquiries, they are reachable through:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/1337empireband/home
Email: longlivetheempiresg@gmail.com
Bandcamp: https://longlivetheempire.bandcamp.com/

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Piri Reis

By the members of Yong Belar, and Second Combat, they combined together as emoviolence quartet and intense with super duper fast riffs. Haunted, stoked and possesed by angsty, they were really tightful and noisy. Sounds like Suis La Lune and Cerce for instance, their fronted vocalist, Mira has really gave an impressive showmanship. Set herself among the crowd pit, she dance and sang with full of anger and passion while the crowds had turned wild. All Piri Reis songs have the similarity essence and vibe – fast riffs though from one to another song. To purchase their releases or any enquiries, you may contact them through:

Email: pirireis.band@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pirixreis/home
Bandcamp:http://www.piri-reis.bandcamp.com

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For overall, it was a cool show concomitant with good bands by the way. Not just an ordinary show, but it is something a fresh and new exposure for the crowds in Ipoh since emo scene wasn’t known so well here – perhaps after the glory days of Bacteria Records and Bodysurf Music. Calmness + fully energetic + violence + hopeless romantic, that is actually Emotive Sundaze.

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Photo courtesy of Seducers&Sinners.Co

Album Review

 

001

The Afternoon Gentleman
Complete Discography (2008-2011)

Released by Fence Press Tapes, this collection had assembled TAG’s several works and collaboration with other Grindcore bands that comprising 54 songs of their’s in this album. The songs were taken from several of their discographies namely;

  • ‘Power Joogle Pogger Violence’ 10” LP (compilation of TAG/Chiens split 7” LP)
  • Suffering Mind /TAG split 7” LP (plus with unreleased tracks)
  • TAG/Cyborg split 7” LP
  • TAG/OSK split 7” LP
  • ‘Pissed Again’ 7” LP (Single)
  • ‘European Fastness’ ( 5 way split CD featuring Ocksen, Xaros, A Den Of Robbers) and Ablach
  • ‘Afterdoom’ EP in CD format.

Just like other typical grindcore riffs with lower strings tune, The Afternoon Gentleman were really stoke when it comes to sludge low intonation and makes your head eager to keep on headbanging close to the stage. They really haunted your soul and tend to make you to dance and get even more wilder around circle pit. With most of  the lyrics that filled with social and global economical problems sentiment that I found on their Bandcamp page, it looks pretty casual and wicked by the mean time from the view of musical value, it reminds me about Yacopsae’s Gift song. To purchase the tape, you may drop an email to rethgrind@hotmail.com