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rock in the fine city
'80s-'90s singapore independent music archives
Monday, December 31, 2007
(Ex Nihilo/Knightsbridge Communication 1996)

Horror of horrors! True Singapore Ghost Stories, Damien Sin, Black Powers, and then Starfish n Coffee...aargh... what have you, many bad attempts at horror from a past decade of bad taste in Singapore. I guess the curiosity in all things dark and scary have always been an inherent interest in most human beings not exclusive to bored Singaporeans, and it was predictably realized in the heydays of the 90s when horror literature was churned in sheer bulk at its peak to feed hungry ghost readers who sometimes cannot discern a real spook. Maybe Singaporeans are just easily scared. I remember that almost every book fairs back then were haunted by scary looking eyes staring out from black volumes. But trust me the contents are anything but. Someone said that Asians are not creative. If it is Singapore horror I so very much concur. So far we're really kidding ourselves with these boom of lame works that adds to the mountain of mediocrity. I don't mind genuine spook, or even amateurish b-graders, they are funny, but contrived attempt to appear serious is cringeworthy especially with the aforementioned. And what if it's not even scary at all? It's a real nightmare for unsuspecting consumers. The foreign talents can do better by teaching us real horrifying lessons, something which I very much hate to say but have to admit anyway. Anyway, many opportunists did cash in on the boom and this CD was one of them.

This CD was conceived sometime in 1996 by Knightsbridge Communications to commemorate their horror story books titled “Souls- True Ghost Stories” (in the tradition of all the “true ghost stories” in Singapore and not much different). The band on this CD was known as Starfish n Coffee or Ghost, in whichever way you look at it, still a bunch of unknowns. I even thought the band was haphazardly put together for the “Souls” books from the mess I gathered of this CD. Now, this CD from the look of it is supposed to make you think you're in for some scary treat. Read on and you'll be scared and perplexed.

So what's wrong with this CD? First of all, the CD is listed with nine tracks. And I expect nine songs that will scar my soul. However, only the first two tracks, namely “Ghost” and “Bloody Valentine” are actual songs. The rest of the seven tracks are spoken words and conversations which lasts an average of one minute each; the story is about one guy trying to poison his girlfriend and she returned as a ghost... and I dont even laughed at this one, I grimaced. Is this supposed to appeal to morbid teenagers who cannot get enough of reading "Souls"? Mediacorps could even do better. Secondly, the meat of the CD: the music is halfway decent, not scary music as the cover and theme would have suggested, but just plain lame mushy cock rock ballads that you won't remember after playing. Seriously I will feel ashamed to play something like that because 1996 is not a year remembered for Steppenwolf. To its credit, Ah Boy from TNT was featured here on lead guitars. I seriously cannot find any better things to say about this CD and I don't even understand what is the whole point of this CD. What were they even thinking? Haha, this is as weird as playing the ET game on Atari or that LP with giraffe on the cover titled Taiwanese aboriginal disco (and yes the vinyl actually existed!). Scary eh? Whoever would have bought this CD is an idiot and yes the joke is on me.

This CD is an anomaly of Singapore music and the review is made for historical archiving and to serve as a warning for potential idiots. I can see the detractors of local music sharpening their knives.

--sojourner at 11:32 PM

Album Reviews

Anesthesia- Anesthesia CD Astreal- Ouijablush CD AWOL- Midnight In June CD Band of Slaves- 45 MCD Bird Brains- Peanut Butter Jelly Sandwich CD The Black Sun- The Black Sun CD The Boredphucks- Revolution 69 MCD The Boredphucks- Banned In Da Singapura CD Chris Ho- Nite Songs In Day-Glo CD Concave Scream- Concave Scream CD Concave Scream- Erratic CD Concave Scream- Three CD Daze- Sexy Little Boy MCD Do Not Ask- Just Play It! CD Edgar's Fault- Edgar's Fault CD Fection Dasche- Eternal Transgression CD Flying Pills- Flying Pills CD Force Vomit- The Furniture Goes Up CD Global Chaos- The Art of Listening CD Humpback Oak- Pain-stained Morning CD Humpback Oak- Ghostfather CD Humpback Oak- SideASideB CD Humpback Oak- Oaksongs Boxset Impiety- Asateerul Awaleen CD Kelvin Tan- The Bluest Silence CD Lilac Saints- Awake CD The Lizard's Convention- Here's a Funny Fish, Hurrah! CD The Mother- A Dark Trip On The Ill Tip CD Mutation- Void of Disharmony EP Neural Vibe- Mantra CD The Oddfellows- Teenage Head CD The Oddfellows- Carnival CD The Ordinary People- It's A Weird Existence CD The Padres- BigO Singles Club #1 MCD The Padres- What's Your Story MCD The Pagans- Stereokineticspiraldreams CD Radio Active- Eyes In The Attic CD Starfish n Coffee- Ghost MCD Stompin' Ground- Measured By The Richter Scale CD Stoned Revivals- Golden Lovesongs From The Evil Island of The Handsome Tropical Cannibals CD Sugarflies- And That's Why CD Watchmen- Democracy CD Watchmen- Love MCD Zircon Gov.Pawn Starz- Follywood CD Zircon Lounge- Regal Vigor LP Various Artists- +65 Indie Underground 3 CDs Set Various Artists- Left of The Dial CD Various Artists- The Substation 10 Years & Counting (Rock The Garden) CD Various Artists- 12 Storeys CD Various Artists- New School Rock MCD
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