The Caulfield Cult album launch @ Blu Jaz Cafe (15.6.13)

It’s been a long while since a local gig consisting mostly of heavy music had been so much fun. No kidding.

The Caulfield Cult released their second album Things Can Only Get Worse from Here at Blu Jaz Café over the weekend, to a small but dedicated crowd.

The first band up was A Town in Fear, who were noticeably without their second guitarist, Wayne. As usual, they were on form and churned out their brand of hardcore metal relentlessly, only stopping to tune and fix minor audio problems.

Next up was the band Two Seas. The band consists of members from math-rock outfit Fire Away! Samson and, this being their second show as a full band, their eagerness and anticipation to perform was evident. Their music was a refreshing change from the usual bands that grace local gigs — with odd-time signatures, complex drumming, harrowing screams and melodic singing, it was clear that the period of inactivity during Fire Away! Samson’s hiatus had not gone to waste.

For Better Endings took the stage next. After playing shows for nearly seven years and going through several line-up changes, you would expect the band’s sound to grow mellower. For Better Endings did the complete opposite — as the lights dimmed, the band ignited into chaos. This is a group that has to be seen live to be fully appreciated, as the band members jump around angrily while frontman Damian Steven punches the floor at the climax of the final song and fretters Keith, Mark and Auji flail around erratically, drummer Shaun Benjamin contributing to the mayhem with blast beats. If they’d sought to make a grand first impression for the people new to their sound, they sure accomplished it that night.

Abolition A.D. followed up, playing a sludgy, noisy brand of hardcore punk that hasn’t seen much popularity in recent years. They put on a good show, showcasing their abrasive sound complimented with blast beating and harsh vocals and proved to be a favourite with the bands performing that night, as members of For Better Endings and The Caulfield Cult gathered in front and bared the ‘claw’ during their entire set.

Finally it came time for The Caulfield Cult to take the stage, playing a set consisting mostly of songs from their new album. The fact that the album had only been streaming online for less than a month before its launch was irrelevant as people in the crowd enthusiastically sung along to their new material. From the rawness of Nick and Brian’s voice, the crunch of Skinny’s guitars and the beats Darren laid; it was pretty evident that they are one of those bands that sound even better live. No frills, no auto tune, just a bunch of guys with their instruments rocking out to a dedicated crowd in a small venue. Towards the end of their set, the band decided to play two songs from their first album, ‘Everyone But Me’ and ‘Burden’, which prompted huge sing-alongs from the crowd, and Nick letting some members of the crowd take the mic to sing along.

The show was completely DIY, with every ticket, beer, and any merchandise bought going to fund their upcoming Europe tour; the after-party held at Blu Jaz also adding additional funding to their tour expenses.

The show was definitely one of the most diverse line-ups I’ve seen at a show in recent memory, encompassing various genres of rock/metal/hardcore music — from the simple power chords of The Caulfield Cult, the odd time signatures of Two Seas, and the chaos of For Better Endings. Here’s hoping for more amazing line-ups at local shows like these.

By Louis Foo

The Ghost Inside @ The Substation Theatre (12.05.2013)

We’ve been waiting a long time for The Ghost Inside to play in Singapore and they did not disappoint, bringing their catchy melodies and honest lyrics to The Substation Theatre on Sunday for an incredible first show.

Thai-based outfit Annalynn opened the night but as it always goes with opening bands, they had a tough time making an impression on us. It didn’t help that they are relatively unknown here but nevertheless, they made hopeful attempts to get us to clap and jump along throughout their set. Their persistence did pay off in the end as they laid down breakdown after breakdown, and eased us into the familiarity of a hardcore show.

By the time A Town In Fear took to the stage, the room was in full force as the band chugged away. The band’s music was straight up and in-your-face, and vocalist Linus must be credited for stubbornly insisting us to form a circle pit every song. The band tirelessly ripped through songs like ‘Unparalleled’ and ‘Milestones’ as though they’d been playing all their lives. Truth be told, between the wild antics and almost-fights, we were all really all just getting warmed up for The Ghost Inside, whose appearance onstage was met with loud cheers.

After a short soundcheck, the band blazed in with ‘Greater Distance’. Vocalist Jonathan Vigil was just as ferocious live as he is on records. The rest of the band didn’t hold up too shabby either, playing with enough force to stop a train. The band were thoroughly impressed by the enthusiasm held by the crowd, having no idea that they would get such a massive reception. You could just see the genuine pleasure they had in having the privilege of playing such a great show, promoting Vigil to say, “A few years back, we didn’t even get crowds like this at home.”

And rightly so. From the moment The Ghost Inside played the first note, we had gone all but insane. We’d finally found our feet, stage diving every five seconds and singing out as loud as we could when Vigil directed the microphone at us. There were breakdowns and gang vocals aplenty with fan favourites ‘Dark Horse’ and ‘Chrono. Between songs, Vigil would talk to us about how he learned so much from playing music and how it helped him through his darkest times.

The band were comfortably playing their final song Dark Horse’ when the power cut out to the guitar amps halfway. A painfully awkward silence fell over the venue but the issue was quickly resolved. The band then talked it over and decided to play another song instead, ‘Test the Limits’, a nice surprise as they’d never performed it live before.

We still hadn’t had enough though, and the crowd demanded an encore which the band kindly obliged to. They returned onstage once more and broke into ‘Engine 45’, their lead single from Get What You Give. The show quickly turned into complete chaos with half of us getting up on stage until there was no room to move. Although sweaty and exhausted, we ended the night with a resounding refrain from the song.

For those of us who have been listening to The Ghost Inside since Fury and the Fallen Ones, it was an incredible experience to finally see them live. But it can’t compare to the knowledge that the band had enjoyed themselves so much that they’d declared this to be the best stop of the tour and promised to return soon.

By Izzan Haziq

The Caulfield Cult announce new album and release show

The Caulfield Cult will be releasing their second album, Things Can Only Get Worse From Here as a cassette and digital download via Rooftop Records in the US on 4th June, as well as 12″ vinyl via Don’t Shoot The Messenger in the UK on 10th June.

The album was produced by Leonard Soosay at Snakeweed Studios, and was recorded from January to March this year.
The band have also announced a release show for the album at Blujaz Cafe, with supporting bands Abolition A.D., A Town In Fear, Anechois, and For Better Endings.


Caulfield Cult Flyer

Track list:

01 Phony
02 Kings In the Back Row
03 Everything We Ever Did
04 Great Scott
05 Drought
06 Etched
07 You Are Good
08 Nothing Works Out In the End
09 Pockets

The Caulfield Cult
with Abolition A.D., A Town In Fear, Anechois and For Better Endings
Bluejaz Cafe
Monday, 15 June
$10 at the door

By Izzan Haziq

A Town In Fear: “Nothing will divide us”

Have a closer listen to A Town In Fear’s lyrics and you will hear that underneath all of the metal brutality, there is a sensitivity — a thoughtfulness that they have about the world around them. The band’s debut album ‘Traditions’ will be released this week, a record they have promised will be an honest account of “how this world truly is”, inspired by nostalgia, loss, perseverance, confrontation, families, perspectives, and realization. Speaking to vocalist Linus Sebastian, we hear about their appreciation for the people who have made them who they are today and their journey as a band so far.

Congratulations on releasing an album! Tell us a little more about ‘Traditions’.
‘Traditions’ is a record very close to our hearts. It’s very much about our lives, families and friends who have gone through this journey with us throughout the span of nearly 3 years now. We are really grateful for all the undying support they have showered upon us and this is our way of giving back to them.

We recorded the album locally with the very handsome Ron from Blueprint Studios. It was a great experience for us going through the whole recording process and we wouldn’t trade it for the world! When we started writing the record, there were a 101 things we could have written about but what hit us was the fact that we wanted our music and lyrics to be as honest as possible and we wanted people out there to “feel” what we feel.

“We wanted our music and lyrics to be as honest as possible and we wanted people out there to “feel” what we feel”

How long was the whole process of releasing this album?
Recording took about 3 to 4 months to complete, mix and then master. It was a rather tiring process because we had to do it song by song and this dragged for days, and then months. But the outcome was fantastic! We got what we wanted and once that was done, we had to get our heads and minds out and really go all out to market the album and the launch. It is great, we’ve had a lot of support from the media. We are really grateful and tomorrow will be the day of reckoning! We will bring fear to the launch!

The band have been together for almost three years now. What are some of the best, and some of the hardest moments you’ve had together?
Being as a band isn’t easy at all, we go through a lot of ups and downs but we always try to laugh it off and take everything with a smile — life’s too short for squabbles!

We have been through a few line up changes because some members had their own agendas in life and things they wanted to accomplish and I think the only thing we can do is to respect their decisions. It was cool because they all paved ways for what A Town In Fear is today, musically. We are a bunch of friends with different tastes for music, coming together to write our own music! This really broadens our views and perspectives about the sound we want to create and gives us space and room to find our own sound. It’s an awesome feeling when you achieve what you set out to achieve.

Best moment — well maybe tomorrow, at the launch?

“Never give up on anything no matter what, and aways keep trying for your goals, because one day you might just reach them”

What is the best advice you’ve ever received as a band? Anything you’d like to share?
We have honestly received quite a lot of advice along the way. People supporting us, and others putting us down. But what really matters is that we learn from all this advice and improve as a band! Perhaps the most guidance we have had along our musical journey would be the advice given to us by our families and friends, and not forgetting our producer Ron.

Throughout the recording process, Ron was always there to guide us and provide us with the feedback we need from a consumer’s point of view, which was important to us as artists because we needed those “extra ears” to help us decipher the ‘thumbs up’ from the ‘thumbs not so up’ moments.

Perhaps one piece of advice we want to share with you as a band, is that you should never give up on anything no matter what, and aways keep trying for your goals, because one day you might just reach them!

What should we be expecting at your album launch tomorrow?
Total CHAOS! It’s going to be really exciting being able to perform our album at the launch for our families and friends! Also not forgetting the other bands from all ends of the musical spectrum who will be gracing the evening with us!

Expect moshing, circle pits, head-banging, crowd surfing and two-stepping going on in the crowd. There will be moments of sheer brutality and there will times where we take you to another horizon of calmness and the diversity that music as to offer.

We promise to bring you for a ride so come on down and support local music! Nothing much matters more than your individual drive to want to support our local passion. It is this that fuels and motivates us to want to continue doing the things we do. Nothing Will Divide Us. Be stoked!

By Melissa Yong

A Town In Fear album launch
with The Caulfield Cult, A Vacant Affair, ANECHOIS, Avalanche, Embrace Them Ghosts, Exhibitors and For This Cycle
3 November 2012, 5pm onwards
The Substation
$10 at the door

Baybeats Auditions applications now open

Esplanade’s annual alternative music festival Baybeats has just announced that its ‘Baybeats Auditions’ applications are now open.

The Baybeats Auditions were created to discover, nurture and showcase local bands with the potential to perform on a large-scale platform alongside local, regional and international acts with an eclectic mix of genres. This year’s Auditions will be supported by Macbeth Singapore, a throwback to the festival’s early years when it was co-curated with the team at the now defunct Wake Me Up Music.

Successful applicants are mentored by prominent local musicians for four months in a unique programme that develops all aspects of their live performance.

This year saw eight bands perform at the festival: A Town In Fear, Anechois, Black Diamond Folds, Cashew Chemists, Embrace Them Ghosts, Godzilla, Obedient Wives Club and Pep Talk.

Baybeats 2013 be held from 28-30 June.

Apply here!

Closing date: 10 Dec 2012, Mon, 6pm
Results will be announced on the Baybeats website on 21 Dec 2012, Fri

1st Round Auditions: 5 Jan 2013, Sat
2nd Round Auditions: 2 Feb 2013, Sat