Tracks of the Week (23/3/2017) (Spooky Wet Dreams, Ali Aiman, Scarlet Heroes, Islands)
Tracks of the Week is back with a quadraple threat, four songs to cry to, dance to or to set as magical soundtracks to your daydreams! Down below, we also have a little surprise for you in honour of a legend.
1) Ipoh Girls – Spooky Wet Dreams
This lovely garage punk outfit maintains their fun, light-hearted attitude (that is sometimes interspersed with slightly darker subjects like their song Withdrawals) in Ipoh Girls. An endearing and adorable tribute to Ipoh women, Spooky Wet Dreams dishes it out with character and personality present in the warm and punchy lyrics composed by Ze Spooky. It’s not cringe-worthy, like how it is with most songs that ends with ‘____ Girls’, and the jovial facet of the song leaves a big grin on your face (And I try, But bapanya pak lebai, And I try to justify, My independent girls).
What makes this song stand out the most to us in comparison to Spooky Wet Dream’s other songs (and their Cold Pizza Party EP in general), is the slightly more Nusantara guitar licks echoing some bygone era of late 90’s Malay indie. The catchy rhythms also accurately portrays the feeling of hanging out in those pretty avenues of Ipoh town – the very same ones the band is in from the music video. All-in-all, Spooky Wet Dreams latest single makes us excited about their upcoming record, The Calm Before the Storm. Maybe Ipoh Girls is merely the calm before a bigger, better musical storm coming soon.
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2) Hasrat – Ali Aiman
Ali Aiman has always emanated smooth, sultry vibes and is one of those gentle-sounding singers in Malaysia’s EDM scene that tugs at your heartstrings. This time he takes it slower and more somber than his previous records such as Morning Sun. The lyrics are more minimal but sharp in its simplicity, especially when carried through by melancholic guitars. In fact, it’s those electric guitar sound more prominent here, making it straddle the line of being smooth EDM/R&B and Malay Top 40 ballads. Musically, Hasrat is not as interesting as his other tracks, but Ali Aiman’s vocals still casts a mellow spell on us – even decidedly so when he sings Kerana jiwaku/ Tiada mentari. “So much feels” would be appropriate colloquial phrase to summarize this sad melody. If you’re stuck in your loneliness as you silently for a loved one to not leave your life, Hasrat should definitely be on your playlist.
3) Fire in the Valley – Scarlet Heroes
‘Festive’. ‘Joyous’. ‘Driven’. ‘Motivational’. If Scarlet Heroes were to come in an easycore delivery package, these words would be stamped next to the address. Fire In The Valley is catchy and accessible, yet its riffs and composition speaks with more urgency than their previous, more vibrant, single Headway. Those factors in and of themselves are not matters of complaint however. The song blares a lovely serenade amidst all of the upbeat and fast progressions. Although the lyrics in and of themselves are inherently compilations of cliches that makes us think of early 2000s American pop punk bands in khaki shorts, the song is not without its highlights. The headbanging solo comes in with machine gun drums that makes us jump around the office with very specific arson – actually romantic – tendencies as we sing about lighting up the sky and burning down towns – innocent bystanders of our love, possibly.
4) Flower – Islands
Freshly recorded from Izelan, the lead singer’s bedroom, Flowers is a soft-spoken, distorted love song. There is nothing ambitious in its production, as the progression rings simply throughout the whole track, but truthfully, it doesn’t need to be ambitious. The dreamy, vague vocals sings an adoration for a flower given by a loved one, as the character in the song tries to nurture it in his car (Throw some water on it/To keep her alive and fresh so that she wont feel the dying heat). It is cute and almost wonderfully desperate, as though clinging to something that seems unable to escape death. A short, airy soundtrack to the novices of romantic relationships – and like relationships, Flower is delicate, sufficiently noisy, and sometimes ends to soon.
In honour of the 88th anniversary of our beloved legend Allahyarham Tan Sri P Ramlee, we’d just like to remind all of you about this great album compilation back in 2011, P Ramlee: Satu Indiepretasi. Local indie artistes do their own renditions of P. Ramlee’s greatest hits to pay respect to the man himself. Although not every single cover is great (our least favourite being the cover of Jangan Tinggal Daku, and our utmost favourite: Tunggu Sekejap and Tiada Kata Secantik Bahasa), it is an important salutation to the legacy of this legend. We hope this would be emulated in the future, but future artistes to come too, since paying homage to our historical roots is always important. We at The Daily Seni firmly believe in always bringing back good music for the listening pleasures of all our readers. Give it another listen if you’re a fan of this album. Or if you’ve never heard it, what are you waiting for?
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