Lomography’s Blue Hour Sessions to put spotlight on Singapore music and art scene

Lomography Singapore has just announced the Blue Hour Sessions, a 6-part series featuring collaborations with local bands and graphic artists with an aim to document ground-breaking work in the local music scene.

Drawn from the French expression l’heure bleue, ‘The Blue Hour’ refers to the time before nightfall when the sun slips from sight and the sky falls into a deep blue – traditionally, this hour of day is seen to hold special significance because of the possibilities for unexpected collisions, liaisons and delirium.

From 13 November to 14 April, the Blue Hour Sessions will take place on the last Saturday of the month, with each session turning the spotlight on collaborative efforts between some of the most exciting bands and graphic artists of our generation.

Expect live sets with visual and audio installations, as well as the launch of special edition EPs (limited to a first-run of 36 copies) featuring rough cuts, unreleased demos, analogue prints, and zine artwork by the bands and graphic artists themselves.

Other Sounds is proud to be official online media partner of the the Blue Hour Sessions as it aims to put the spotlight back on local bands and graphic artists.

Blue Hour Sessions schedule

23 November
Tiramisu x fFurious
.gif x M-D-R-N
7nightsatsea x Heider of SSYSTM x Allison Marie Low

21 December
MUON x William Chan of TMRRW
Bani Haykal x Kristal Melson x SUSEJ

18 January
HEIZENBERG x Brandon Tay of Syndicate
Dream State Vision x StudioKALEIDO

22 February
sub:shaman x Marc Gabriel Loh
Space Days x Afiq Omar of Syndicate

29 March
Pleasantry x FROMPAMM
ANECHOIS x Izyanti Asa’ari x Wu Jun Han
Ellipsis x Ban-Fam

3 May
Astreal x MAKE
MONSTER CAT x DO NOT DESIGN x Afiq Omar of Syndicate
Chöd x Philipp Aldrup
Zirconia (feat. X’ho + Yeow of Zircon Lounge) x WHITELABEL x Lasse Marhaug

Update (17/12/13):

The Blue Hour Sessions exhibition and live showcases will now be held at Home Club:

27 December
MUON x William Chan of TMRRW
Dream State Vision x StudioKALEIDO

17 January
HEIZENBERG x Brandon Tay of Syndicate
Bani Haykal x  Kristal Melson

21 February
sub:shaman x Marc Gabriel Loh
Space Days x Afiq Omar of Syndicate

28 March
Pleasantry x FROMPAMM
ANECHOIS x Izyanti Asa’ari x Wu Jun Han
Ellipsis x Ban-Fam

2 May
Astreal x MAKE
MONSTER CAT x DO NOT DESIGN x Afiq Omar of Syndicate
Chöd x Philipp Aldrup

*Dates and line-ups are subject to change

By Katherine Pollock

Sapporo Safaris EP launch @ Scape Warehouse (25.01.13)

In a hexagonical room that could fit a couple hundred, a multi-coloured bird had shed all of its feathers at The Gallery at *Scape, where Sapporo Safaris were to launch their EP, Figures of Eight. They proved to be a beacon of hope that night for the local music scene along with the mixture of performers they had invited, from Seyra to Ellipsis to The Sets Band — an exemplary pick of bands from the growing local musicians pool, in both talent and in diversity.

As the opening bands played, the overall atmosphere at The Gallery at *Scape, felt like a school dance. Seyra’s happy pop songs set the pace, but the sound system and acoustics of the room didn’t quite work in their favour, something that would plague all four bands on the bill. Sarah Ismail’s sugar-sweet vocals were drowned and did not stand out as much as it does in their bedroom recordings. It would have been great to hear her voice and lyrics beneath the warm strum of the guitars and the steady happy drum beat. Instead, it was hard to make out any lyrics, but the catchiness of their songs encouraged some feet-tapping and body-bobbing.

Ellipsis, “new kids” in the local music scene, definitely gained some fans with their set, and with a song called ‘Padawan’, ‘Platypus’ and one about “making out amidst nature” (which the sound system made to sound like “making out in front of strangers” — we had to clarify with the band), they weren’t hard to like.

The last supporting band that night was The Sets Band, whose sound was hard to put a finger on, especially when their bio described themselves simply as “loving emotions”. In the context of music, that could mean anything, really. The Sets Band, like Ellipsis, was a four-piece, but unlike Ellipsis, has been around for a few years longer. Their standout track was ‘Rainbow Cave, which made rock ‘n’ roll love with our ears in slow-motion.

As the audience thickened, and as the venue was comfortably filled, some Sapporo Safari members and started throwing more feathers in the air, adding to the magical ambiance that they had prepared for us. As they breezed through the first three tracks ‘An Island in You’, ‘Oxygen Man II’, and ‘Electric Handshakes’ (all off their EP Figures of Eight), one can observe that while talented and likable, a few members were still painfully shy, and not quite ready to share their performance space with strangers. However, lead singer and frontman Kevin Ho, sister Jacqueline Ho and bassist Edmund Tan (who allowed Kevin a little break on lead vocals for their new and noteworthy song ‘Wishing For a Dream’) made up for the shyness of the other members and faced the crowd with a free-spirited attitude and enthusiasm that screamed, I don’t give a f***!

Their music is very different from the traditional guitar-driven sound that the previous bands were obviously inspired by. Sapporo Safaris; music had an ethereal dreamy quality to it with its soaring trumpets and vocal harmonies that it’s difficult not to compare them to Beirut and other Balkan-folk music. When the band performed ‘Ancient Becoming’,  you could feel everyone’s hairs rising in awe and hearts falling in a steadfast kind of love for them.

By Cat Cortes

Sapporo Safaris announce debut EP: ‘Figures of Eight’

Fresh to the Singaporean music scene in mid-2012, Sapporo Safaris have already done the rounds of local venues, sparking interest far and wide. With gigs at Home Club, Blu Jaz Café and *SCAPE under their belt, not to mention a feature on Kombi Sessions recently, the next logical step was to officially release some material.

This release is now on our doorstep, in the form of debut Figures of Eight, a four-track EP to be released on 25 January 2013 touted simply as “an introduction”. Produced by Patrick Chng (The Oddfellows, TypeWriter), it promises “a glimpse of what lies ahead in the starry-crusted future”.

Self-described as “young and passionate dreamers”, the Sapporo Safaris lineup consists of a mish-mash of instrumentation and people alike, the band forming through mutual friends and siblings into its final roster of eight. Referencing influences such as Arcade Fire, Of Monsters and Men and Beirut, their indie pop/rock sound remains firmly unique – perhaps due to the rigours of accommodating eight opinions in the songwriting process.

Sapporo Safaris will be launching the Figures of Eight EP at *SCAPE Gallery on 25 January from 6.30pm. They will be supported by Seyra, Ellipsis and The Sets Band, with EPs and t-shirts available on the night.

Sapporo Safaris Figures of Eight EP launch
with Seyra, Ellipsis, The Sets Band
25 January 2013
6:30pm
$5 at the door