Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Usually when I do a comic (ha ha, that phrase makes it sound like I've done quite a number of comics, right?) it tends to have some sort of backstory to support it.

This time, there is no backstory. The comic was drawn to highlight one of those peculiarities unique to the band called Murfy's fLaW.

Anyone who's a regular at mf gigs knows the comic speaks the truth.

All the band members can be casually lounging about on stage, tuning instruments, chatting and what not, but immediately someone says, "Okay, let's begin our set," the stage magically clears.

The people who were just seconds previously relaxed on stage, passing time, waiting for the set to begin, suddenly remember to deal with very important cigarette/last minute practice/make-up emergencies.

Thus mf sets tend to begin with one or two band members on stage standing at the microphone, begging the other band mates to show up. (Reema and Jojo have perfected this art, they even have a song, "Jozie Boo, where are you?". It's sang to the Scooby Doo theme song).

To date, I've never seen another band do this.

Another thing unique to Murfy's fLaW is the ability to create spaghetti. No matter how many times we've watched Gilbert (former Beathog) do it, mf has never mastered the art of a neatly set-up stage.

We have often been advised to move more on stage. However, mf are working on setting a record as the stillest band in history. This is not just because we're desperate to make it into the Guinness Book of Records. The truth is, we don't move around much simply because we're scared of tripping in the mass of cabling we manage to create. (And if we don't trip, there's always the fear of electrocution).

All this gets me thinking about bands and their particular peculiarities. Did I say "bands"? I mean band. Just A Band.

While trawling the interwebs recently, I found that KenyaChristian had premiered the artwork from Just A Band's upcoming album 82.

As I was seething in envy (both at KenyaChristian for being picked to premier the cover, and JAB for finishing their sophomore album), it occurred to me that my fandomishness(?) of JAB is largely on a visual level. Before I'd heard a single song, I was already a fan simply because of the JAB aesthetic. The reason I bought a copy of their debut album, Scratch to Reveal, was simply because it was such. Good. Art.

A couple more clicks into their website, I ended up here, where I finally experienced their music.

I was so busy getting blown away by the video, that it took me a couple of viewings to realise that I really did not like the song. (Yeah, sue me).

But that's just me, I tend to believe that the entire electronic genre should be hung from a tree and shot. Maybe it's the annoying repeptitive synthesisers. Or the annoying repeptitive lyrics. Or the annoying autotuned vocals. Or the way all electronic music sounds the same. The only good thing about electronic music is that if you're on a dancefloor, and you're too tired/unskilled to dance, the strobe lights tend to make everyone look very rhtymic and dancy.

I digress. Despite my absolute hatred for the genre, I bought the album, just coz it was so darned pretty. Whereupon, the real surprise set in. The music was amazing. I mean, it was electronic music, all right. But despite that awful flaw, it's good music. Funky bass lines, powerful singing, interesting composititions... how did they do it? How did they make electronic music sound good? And more importantly, can they do it again with 82?

I digress again. The point here was to show that JAB's peculiarity is that one can't think of their music, without also thinking of their visual art. The videos, the posters, the photographs, the website. So, while waiting for October and the launch of 82, I'm not just waiting to hear JAB's new songs, I'm also anxiously waiting to see the new posters, watch the new videos and see the new photographs.

Friday 2nd, October
That '80s Show
Murfy's fLaW gig on 80s songs at Dass Ethiopian Restaurant from 9.00pm

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