This is how amazing I think the Internet is…
I received an email a few days ago from a chap in a Malaysian power pop band asking me to plug their music. Someone I’d never met before, in a band I’d never heard of before. From Malaysia.
That’s how amazing I think the Internet is.
Aidil was the chap’s name (and still is, I presume), and he’s the chief singer-songwriter for Couple, a band from Kuala Lumpur. Aidil supplied me with links to the band’s three albums – Top Of The Pop (2006), Teenage Disc Fantastic (2008), and Pop Tak Masuk Radio (2009) – so I could have a listen to ’em and then asked if I wouldn’t mind mentioning them on this here blog.
My first reaction was “Great! Love to! I’m keen to help anyone!”
But almost immediately after that I thought “Oh, no. What if it’s horrible?”
So, I grabbed the albums. I put them very carefully in my media player. Then, with trembling fingers I pressed “play” and held my breath…
I breathed a huge sigh of relief. It wasn’t horrible.
I decided to listen to the albums chronologically (and present them to you that way, too), so I started with 2006’s Top Of The Pop.
Top Of The Pop (2006)
As I was listening, I thought “OK, it sounds pretty low-fi, and the singing’s dodgy in places – but that’s probably because they’re an indie band with no money and couldn’t afford lots of overdubs and retakes. I guess they did the best they could with what they had.”
When Top Of The Pop finished, I was very pleased to notice that I didn’t skip any tracks. (The sign of a non-horrible album: playing it all the way through). Overall, I thought that what the album lacked in polish it made up for in charm.
Here are a couple of tracks to give you an idea of what Couple’s songs actually sound like, as opposed to me trying to describe them:
Couple – “Are You Ready?” (2006)
Couple – “Gotta Be My Gurl” (2006)
Teenage Disc Fantastic (2008)
As well as a great album name, the band plays enthusiastically here, and the songs are foot-tappers:
Couple – “C’mon Operator” (2008)
Couple – “Menarilah Hey” (2008)
Pop Tak Masuk Radio (2009)
I enjoyed this album, and I found the first three tracks very interesting. The first, “Radio,” sounded to me like Coldplay playing a power pop song:
Couple – “Radio” (2009)
The second track, “Lagu Cinta Untukmu,” is a nice little power pop ditty. Vocally, it reminded me a little of The Wellingtons‘ “Song For Kim,” but it’s also a little Weezer-ish in places. Despite the resemblances, I like it:
Couple – “Lagu Cinta Untukmu” (2009)
And track three, “Semua Tak Boleh,” sounded like an amalgam of every garage song I’ve ever heard. It starts off as “Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere” then goes into what sounds very much like a song that I can’t remember at the moment (maybe you can spot it):
Couple – “Semua Tak Boleh” (2009)
Overall, I think that Couple aren’t too bad at all. (Warning: cheap joke alert) They’re certainly the best Malaysian power pop band I’ve ever heard.* At least there are a few songs for you to listen to so you can ignore me and make up your own mind.
And I was so pleased that they weren’t horrible.
(*Sorry about that.)