Oct 6, 2011

Rockin Blues'd Malaysian Edition - The Butterfingers

The Butterfingers, from left to right;
  • Kadak - Mohd Fakharudin Bin Mohd Bahar (Bass, Vocals)
  • Emmett - Emmett Roslan Ishak (Vocals, Guitar, Violin)
  • Loque - Khairil Ridzwan bin Anuar (Guitar, Samples, Vocals)
  • Loko - Mohamad Hafiz (Drums)
"In 1993, while jamming at the Black Widow Studios in Kuala Lumpur, Loque and Kadak bumped into Emmett, who was there jamming (as a guitarist) with his band at the time, Grunge Dayz. Impressed with what he saw, Loque challenged Emmett to a ‘jamming showdown', after which they mutually decided to join skills and creativity, and form their own band. After drummer Kalai joined, Butterfingers was officially born by the end of 1993. With the final line up of Loque (songwriter, guitarist), Emmett (vocals, guitar, strings and lyricist), Kadak (bass) and Kalai (drums), Butterfingers hit the underground gig scene with a vengeance that sold out most of their shows and is described today as ‘the stuff of underground legends'." wikipedia

You couldn't have any credible or sane discussions about Malaysian rock scene without the mention of the name 'The Butterfingers'. True story mate...these guys were, still is, and still would be; the greatest rock band that Malaysia had ever produced. Widely considered as a grunge band, their earlier materials were so heavily influenced by the Seattle scene that the locals initially thought their first demo "1 goat, 2 apples and 16 oranges"  was an unreleased Nirvana album-Emmet does sound like Kurt Cobain it sometimes scare me.

The Chemistry(Between Us), one of the songs that pretty much sums
up the awesomeness of The Butterfingers

Malayneum, rock n roll with their trademark style - 
which the fans dubbed as the 'Butter' sound.

These guys are a freaking monster and messiah, or maybe an awesome combination of both; a mutated keris-wielding-six string-slinging-were-messiah...or something. They had spawned maybe thousands other(mostly insignificant) bands from their impressed fans up to this days. Our very own Nirvana, you could say- or maybe Sex Pistols or Blankey Jet City..

Like any other great band, The Butterfingers music are evolving. Or rather, Loque the mastermind's songwriting are maturing. No one could drive on teen angst forever right. So the second phase of The Butterfingers they wrote songs mostly in Malay language. Their last two albums Selamat Tinggal Dunia(Goodbye World) and Kembali(The Comeback) were 100% in Malay and sounded more experimental...some said more to Pink Floyd/Radiohead territory.

Cuai (Clumsy)

"In 2003, Emmett left to further his education in Canada, leaving the rest of the band to release and promote Selamat Tinggal Dunia without him. There were rumors of Butterfingers breaking up or melting away (helped by the title of the record itself which can be directly translated as Goodbye World). One week after Emmett returned to Malaysia, in 2006, it was Loque's turn leave, this time for Berkley College in Boston, where he continued writing music for the band.

2008 saw the release of their sophomore Malay album, "KEMBALI", which means 'the comeback', coincidentally timed with the Loque's return during his Fall break. During those rare few weeks together, the band worked at full capacity to play and promote what would be their last album together.

During Loque's hiatus, the high demand for Butterfingers, plus the success of "KEMBALI", which was well received by fans and industry alike, insisted that Emmett, Loko and Kadak continue to play show. They added famed guitarist and music producer, Greg Henderson to their temporary line-up. This quartet played a variety of shows, including Butterfingers regular headlining spot for the biggest annual music festival, Rock The World.

With Loque returning in January 2009, and Emmett relocating to Canada in May 2009, it was finally time for the boys to admit the truth and plan the band's farewell tour de force. For this, they chose the most prestigious venue open to live performances, Istana Budaya(Palace of Art), making Butterfingers the first independent band to play there. The four shows played over two days sold out long before the performances and were a huge success. It was an emotional send off for all: the people's band that played only for their love of music, and those who loved their music."

Loque continued to write songs, even while studying in Boston, under the moniker Monoloque. Upon his return to Malaysia, he released several tracks, which have been doing well, filling the void Butterfingers fans felt. Monoloque band, which the members including Kadak and Loko, continues to push the Malaysian music boundaries to new heights.

Monoloque singing a P. Ramlee's song for a
tribute album

Live at The House of Coco Tang, Nottingham

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