Wednesday, June 04, 2008

S'pore StreetFest 2008 - Hidama


In between the main events (ala D'J Party, WoW! Band Finals), there are days when each individual bands are to come down to the stage area to familiarize themselves with it as well as to perform for the public. Having heard the band Hidama at a previous event before, I made a special trip down to Plaza Singapura to watch them again.

And for once, I was early. Too early.

To the point that I ended up people-watching for a good hour+. The seating was all set though.

Besides the band performances, Streetfest also featured graffiti since it's all about the street culture. There were three large blank walls for the art to be displayed. But it was sorta "art in motion". The graffiti wasn't completed and just displayed there. It is to be finished during the course of the S'pore Streetfest. Which was kinda cool since we got to see exactly how good they were at spray-painting.

This is the first panel. It looked a lot like Johnny Depp, doesn't it?
Incidentally, it is by far, the most artistic-looking of the three. Ok, they're all artistic. But this one looks like a piece of pop art which belonged in some fancy-smancy art gallery.

Graffiti Art #3 This one reminds me of the Gorilliaz's cartoon band art.
Here's a sample.
gorillaz Pictures, Images and Photos ...Ok. Maybe not. But the first thing that came to my mind was the Gorilliaz band. Both are kinda distorted in a way anyway.

My favourite amongst the three. I really like the vibrancy of the colours and how they used it. With just spraycans alone, the artists made it so the tiger seem to be glaringly bright. It ain't complete though.

Btw, did you know that the artists are actually secondary school students? The school's name started with an "S", but I can't remember anymore. I think they're collaborating with a few other graffiti pros for this project (Seeing that some of the older-looking ones were smoking...).

Then I managed to catch the artists in action and through a lucky combo of inadequate wobbly hands + sheer luck, succeeded in getting this.
PhotobucketPersonally, I think it looks kinda surreal =)

Hidama arrived in a hurry (Later, it was known that they had only been informed on the day itself about their scheduled performance smiley Pictures, Images and Photos) much later. Thank god man. It only takes so long before people-watching becomes obsessive.

Because of my wobbly hands, I couldn't get anything that wasn't a blur and so, shall substitute them with grainy screencaps. Yeah, I think I recorded all but one of their performances.

The band members, as I heard, are all from LaSalle. For your info, LaSalle is a fancy arts school in Singapore. Something like the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, but fancier-sounding.

This is the vocalist (Her name's Kai Li, I think) & their guitarist. (Damn. Unglam screenshot here coz she was walking, but at least it's remotely presentable)

So far, this is the video with the least amount of static in the background. I would have uploaded the rest, but it hardly be audible (the vocals, I mean) since Youtube typically screws up the quality further.

Here's the full songset anyway (The links lead to live performances by the original band).

1] Himitsu (by Tokyo Jihen)
2] Jusui Negai (by Tokyo Jihen)
3] Dynamite (by Tokyo Jihen)
4] Ukifune 浮舟(by GO!GO!7188)

The last song which Hidama performed before really left an impression on me. Hidama's rendition of it was different from the original band. The song itself was kinda quirky too, I admit. Especially since the ending of the choras goes
"Rai rai rai rai rai rai rai
Oooh Rai rai rai rai rai rai rai".
Yeah. It sounds like a demented Raichu.

But it's pleasant in its odd little way. The lyrics btw, talks about some tragic Japanese lady (Ukifune) from the Tale of Genji (which is some classical Jap novel).

Hidama - Jusui Negai 入水願い (Tokyo Jihen Cover)

Despite having a sore throat, the vocalist did pretty well. She walked (more like struted) around the stage, acting coy when she should be, and commanded attention all round. Which makes taking screenshots difficult for an amauteur like me.

I'm watching out for Hidama now. Even though they've only covered Japanese songs so far (no originals yet), they manage to put a little of their own style in. Not to mention their members are all good at their instruments. A friend commended that the drummer was insanely fast on a single-pedal drumset, despite a double-pedal drumset being usually used.