What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
Having a dad who used to play lead guitar in a rock band was one of the earliest inspirations for me, despite having him telling my 13-year-old self that I shouldn’t be putting all of my focus on playing the guitar, I still wanted to be like him. My mom on the other hand has always been super supportive with whichever route I wanted to take in life (including music) which I’ll forever be grateful for. I’ve been playing music since I was 9 and started toying with the idea of writing music at 14. I’ve made songs here and there when I was in my early teens but I never really took it seriously. I think what kicked it off for me was listening to Surf Vampires’ Lush on SoundCloud for the first time few years back. I was flabbergasted and in awe when I first heard it because I’ve never heard anything like that coming out of Brunei, then I thought to myself, “Why don’t I actually set aside some time to do stuff like this?”.
I’ve started a handful of musical projects prior to that but due to whatever issues I had, none of those projects either came to fruition or given time to grow and I think Mirror Trash is the end product and an answer to all of the other musical projects that I have started but never finished. The difference between Mirror Trash and everything else I’ve done is, I’m going to try and make this one last as long as I possibly can.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
Reform is a 4 track EP, I recorded shortly after I’ve released Sleepwalking Activity. Reform as an EP is reflective to what’s happening currently in my life in that, I try to change how to go about writing songs for the better. Of all the stuff I’ve released this is the very first release I’ve done that has a happy love song in it. I’ve never wrote a love song before this, so I thought Reform would be a fitting name for the EP. Unlike the previous release Sleepwalking Activity, Reform is more cryptic, a bit vaguer, less confrontational and gives more of a warmer feeling as opposed to Sleepwalking Activity, which was an all-around self-pitying, angry and bitter record.
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
Music wise it’s pretty tough because I have so many influences that I blatantly stole from my older sister but from the top of my head that I could think of right now would be Brian Wilson, Sara Quin, The Cure, Sonic Youth, Mothers, Frankie Cosmos, Nirvana and Lady Gaga. Those musicians in particular because their music have been there for me through my worst times. However, lately I’ve been listening to a lot of Palm and Zoe Graham, they’re really good.
Non-music wise would be Alejandro Jodorowsky, Shana Moulton, Kristine Leschper, Peter Campus and Sue de Beers. All amazing video/visual artists whose works have inspired me visually. I also have a huge soft spot for Will Ferrell. Shouts out Hideo Kojima!
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
If I had to describe my sound, it would be, trying (keyword: trying) to be confrontational, only to have the message drowned by the guitar melodies and a lot of reverb.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
3 albums: Render Another Ugly Method by Mothers, Daydream Nation by Sonic Youth and Absolutely Nothing by Surf Vampires.
3 films: El Topo, Begotten and The Lego Movie
3 books: Independence Day by Richard Ford, The Prophet by Khalil Gibran and High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
I’ve only started enjoying performing live quite recently because before this I was almost always just content with not having to go outside and I’m quite a nervous person, borderline hikikomori. However, I’d say I enjoy performing live over studio nowadays because it’s a one off thing and it’s between you and the audience, it’s more intimate that way I guess.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
Not unique by all means but I was once invited to record drums for one of my school friend’s music project of which I was super proud of, only to find out on the day of the release that they took the drum parts out…. I think that was pretty funny.
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
Digital Brainwashing, for obvious reasons… If the reasons are not obvious enough, listen to Digital Brainwashing.
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
It’s pretty nebulous, the game plan is to play shows here and there then see where that takes me. I would absolutely love to work with other musicians and so far all the collaborations I’ve done turned out great. New material-wise, I’ve made 3 albums and 2 EPs in a span of 2 years so I think I have enough material for now.
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
Who is the best Doki?
Sayori, never forgetti, mom’s spaghetti.
Photo credits: James Ernest Butcher (1st one), Kacper Musialkowski (2nd one)
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
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