Veterans from the hardcore scene hope to get the young ones interested
SINGAPORE — It might be a bit of a cliche to liken a music community to a brotherhood but this is most certainly true for the local hardcore scene. In musical parlance, ‘hardcore’ is a 1980s punk rock sub-genre that originated in Southern California and is associated with the indie spirit and DIY (Do It Yourself) ethos.
SINGAPORE — It might be a bit of a cliche to liken a music community to a brotherhood but this is most certainly true for the local hardcore scene.
In musical parlance, ‘hardcore’ is a 1980s punk rock sub-genre that originated in Southern California and is associated with the indie spirit and DIY (Do It Yourself) ethos.
Locally, the hardcore influence only fully blossomed with the release of the Lion City Hardcore Compilation by BigO magazine in 1993. Despite the passage of time, members of original bands who participated in the compilation have kept the faith by forming LC93, a “supergroup” of sorts. It comprises Izar on vocals, Haermee on bass, Adyboy on drums, and Beb and Suhaimi on guitar.
The band, which will launch its debut album on this Sunday (Aug 28), was formed to pay tribute to “the bands of yesteryear, namely the hardcore punk of the 1990s”, said Izar, formerly a member of Voiceout.
“We felt that those bands — especially the bands from that iconic compilation — were not given a chance to showcase what they had,” he pointed out. For their album, the band members reworked the songs done by the 10 bands that were part of that iconic compilation, “to add in the dynamics which were not available to them back then”, he added.
Q: For the uninitiated, can you explain the significance of the Lion City Hardcore Compilation in 2016?
Suhaimi: The older, first hardcore generation still love and appreciate (hardcore music), but the newer younger kids might not be too familiar with it ... and that is why we decided to do this and resurrect it through this album to let the younger kids know our history.
Q: How has the local hardcore scene changed in the last 26 years since the release of the Lion City Hardcore Compilation?
Suhaimi: In my opinion the scene has progressed a lot. Thanks to the Internet we have more local bands touring the United States, United Kingdom and other parts of the world. It works both ways — it’s also easier for international bands playing here. And also because of the more relaxed censorship and the silent lifting of the slam dancing ban, which made a lot of difference compared to the 1980s and 1990s.
Q: How have the individual members managed to ‘keep the faith’ despite life challenges such as growing older, work and family commitments?
Suhaimi: For myself personally, I never left the scene since I started (he was from hardcore band Stompin’ Ground). I was already married and in my late 20s in the very early 1990s. My everyday life was all a struggle since day one but I love what I did and where I am, so I fought harder to do my best as much as I can to stay on. I don’t believe in doing things halfway — I do or I don’t.
Izar: I believe the friendship that we hold dear keeps us together. The band and the music keeps us together and I feel that that is a hardcore essence on its own — Friendship.
Q: What is the new album about? What are the themes that you hope will resonate with your listeners?
Izar: It’s a rework of the songs done back in 1993. Some songs have been integrated into one. We just added some riffs here and there and paid attention to get the most brutal raw sound. The themes stay true to the same; which in itself still relates to current issues — Drug abuse, societal issues, environmental discussions and friendship in the scene (among others).
Q: Do you have any message for local hardcore fans regarding the album launch?
Izar: To see the kids get together crossing generations and boundaries; that to me is the first most important foundation. To maintain the friendship and respect among one another no matter what age, genre, and background we come from.
Suhaimi: We’re all family and the album itself is for everyone, hence the young and old guests are invited for the album launch. We don’t know if there’s a next album, so don’t miss this.
LC93 launches its debut album on Sunday (Aug 28) at Aliwal Arts Centre, 4.30pm. Doors open at 4pm. Tickets sold only at the door (S$15 before 7pm and S$20 after 7pm)
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