Woes LP「ZOODREAMS／WAKE UP PLS」release interview
In June, Singapore’s independent/mathematical rock band Woes’ LP was jointly released by the four labels of Big Romantic Records, COLD PRESS RECORDS, POPKISSPUNK, and WAITT RECORDS. To commemorate this release, Big Romantic Records has specially produced an interview with Woes.
With their amazing music in the LP, we would like to enjoy this interview and get to know more about these talented musicians.
■ Could you please introduce your band and members to us?
Hello!! We are a 5 piece indie/ math rock band based in Singapore. We have Raizel on vocals, Russell on bass, Shenen on drums and Alex and Aloysius on guitars.
Woes actually started off as a solo project by Russell, when Woes’ first EP, ‘Zoodreams’ was made. As he was called for more gigs, Russell invited more people to join him and Woes grew to become a proper 5 piece band.
ZOOM LiveTrak L8: Woes x CityMusicSingapore - Tadpole
■ This debut LP included your first and second EP; how does your music change from the first EP to the second?
We have released our newest EP, ‘Wake Up Pls’ with our current lineup! While ‘Zoodreams was mostly written by Russell alone, this time, every band member has played an important role in the newest EP and we hoped that everyone enjoyed it!
I also feel that ‘Wake Up Pls’ has a more mature and unified sound. I would like to say that we have poured in elements and feelings from our lives that everyone transitioning to adulthood can relate to.
bass / Russell
■ How do you see this LP to your band?
It’s so awesome that we get to present our music in a somewhat physical medium.
We feel that the higher quality of music and artwork adds to the listening experience. Though we are a relatively new band, I’m so proud and thankful to have been working with my talented bandmates and I’m so happy we’ve come this far to be able to put out a physical LP!
■ How does daily life affect or inspire your music? Can you share the stories behind your song with us?
I feel like our lives are intertwined with music. We like to identify certain feelings and emotions that are present in our lives and turn them into our songs.
For example, ‘Monkey Tennis’ spawned from feelings of heartache and the loss of a lover. We have personally experienced these feelings and we tried to show that in the song. The lyrics are sad and straightforward and the riffs are jagged and angular, somewhat personifying those feelings.
■ We noticed that the design of the vinyl is extraordinary; why would you choose this design?
We wanted to combine visual elements from both EPs, so we had the boy from ‘Zoodreams’ and the dog from ‘Wake Up Pls’ on the cover. You can also see various animals floating about, which gives the artwork a very surreal and dreamlike look, hinting that the boy and dog might still be in a dream, and they need to ‘Wake Up Pls’!
We also wanted to keep with the dark purple palette, symbolizing the late hours of the night. The little fishes also look like stars, don’t they? Again, we would like to thank the artist Sabrina Lim (@sabyarts) for working on this with us!
■ Could you simple introduce us to the indie music scene of Singapore? And are there any local bands or musicians you are following now?
The indie scene in Singapore is a very small but tight nit community. What we lack in numbers we make up for it with our strong passion and love for the music and independent artists we listen to. We are very fortunate to be a part of it! Gig organizers and editorials like Big Duck (@bigduckpteltd) help to promote Singapore music and organize amazing shows, and they are always sure to draw a crowd.
However, there are not as many spaces open to organizers as before, as more and more great venues are being closed down (a recent example would be the Substation) Some local bands and musicians that we love are Cues, Susurrus, Mediocre Haircut Crew, and Sub: shaman. We are also friends with some of them!
※Big Duck website https://www.bigduckmusic.com/
toriel ("Live studio playthrough" at Snakeweed studios) - cues
Mediocre Haircut Crew - Tom Yum | Sofar Singapore
■ What are you working on next?
We are excited to be working on our first full-length album. We have been working on this for a long time and we hope that our listeners will really enjoy it.
For now, we cannot reveal any details of it yet! We are also going to have an EP launch show for our newest EP once we are able to have live shows.
Woes in Music Lane Festival Okinawa 2021
■ What would you like to say to our Japanese audience?
Hello!! It’s amazing that our music would reach the ears of people in Japan! We love Japan and would love to be able to perform there someday. We also want to have a vacation there and enjoy anime and onsen baths😎 We love Japanese indie music too. Thank you for listening to our music and supporting us!
Title: ZOODREAMS + WAKE UP PLS
Product code: BRRCD 065
Price: 4000 JPY
Release Date: 26, May 2021
SIDE A (from EP ZOODREAMS)
4.DOGS FLY/I CAN'T SING, BUT I'LL SING FOR YOU ANYWAY
5.GIRL IN DREAM (BONUS TRACK)
SIDE B (from EP WAKE UP PLS)
9.FOR DAMIEN CARTER
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Based in sunny Singapore, Woes is an Indie/Math rock band in 5 pieces. What started as a solo project by Russell Seow (bass) evolved into a fully-fledged band with the addition of Raizel Gonzales (Vocals), Alex Calaunan (guitars), Aloysius Au (guitars), and Khoo Shen En (drums).
With dance-like rhythms and uplifting yet sorrowful melodies, Woes takes inspiration from bands like Elephant Gym, Jyocho, and American Football, while creating their unique flavor and sound.
Weaving intricate twinkly guitar lines over solid dance-like bass riffs and melancholic vocals, Woes uses their music as a channel to reminisce and express everybody's daily life struggles.