Uncovered: Not your usual cover bands 原創翻唱音樂會

09-05-15

final0.JPG To mark our 191st show, we decided to create an event where bands​ perform​
original interpretations of cover songs. Turned out to be a successful experiment! It was also great to be back at Backstage – thanks to the staff & Abe on sound. Huge thanks to all four bands who performed with intensity and passion and kept the crowd dancing all night. Thanks to our amazing alcohol sponsors: Singha Beer & JackDaniels Cola. Big love for The Underground Team ​which tonight ​
consist​ed​
of Becky, Chloe, Semi, Angus and Sam. Thanks to our wordsmiths for their reviews. 為慶祝第191場的演出,我們決定舉辦一場由樂隊自由演繹翻唱歌曲的音樂會, 結果更是出乎意料地成功!我們亦十分高興可以再次與Backstage合作,很感激當晚的所有職員及負責音效的Abe!除此之外,我們更要多謝當晚為我們表演的四隊樂隊,以充滿熱情的演出把現場觀眾都注滿了能量。當然,我們的酒精飲品贊助商﹣勝獅啤酒傑克丹尼爾可樂亦功不可沒!最後,感謝The Underground 團隊﹣ Becky, Chloe, Semi 及Sam, 還有為演出撰寫樂評的每一位!
love Chris B x​


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SPAM

1. We Are Young – Fun
2. Titanium – David Guetta
3. High and Dry – Radiohead
4. Numb – Linkin Park
5. All These Things that I’ve Done – The Killers
6. Big Bad World – Kodaline
7. End of the Road – Boyz II Men

當晚第一隊的表演單位是二人acoustic 組合SPAM,兩個人兩枝木結他反而讓人更期待。

他們先以耳熟能詳的We Are Young開場,兩枝結他都作rhythm guitar,伴著十分和諧的和音,讓人聽著十分舒服,也和原唱感覺不一樣。主唱有著高亢和較尖的嗓音,相對和唱的聲線沒有那麼響亮,就算唱高三度和音也不會搶,也因此聽著十分舒服。總的來說,SPAM二人把兩枝結他的工作分配得還不錯,也成功製造不同層次,從觀眾的反應也知道他們的投入程度,玩cover的好處可能就是大家都熟悉那些歌曲,容易湊成全場大合唱的感動場面,尤其在他們當晚最後一首歌End of the Road時,用大合唱來完結是蠻感動的。不過,美中不足的,應該還是假音的方面,若能再稍稍的穩定一些整個表現會更完美。但對筆者來說,他們絕對還是一隊頗會表演的組合,期待下一次聽他們唱原創歌曲吧。
– Sidick Lam

The charming Aaron and Nate come together on stage as SPAM, an acoustic act that plays the poppiest songs around – starting with “We Are Young” by Fun, the band got the crowd singing through their set, playing popular hits like “Titanium” by David Guetta and even hazarding a very different approach to “Numb” by Linkin Park that was very unique. Aaron’s peppy attitude and charm with Nate’s unique voice came and brought the crowd swaying and dancing together with almost a club atmosphere. Throughout their set, Aaron used his energetic character to get the crowd pumped up, playing with the Singha Beer balloon while Nate busted out riff after riff with beautiful vocals accompanying his partner. The crowd interaction from Aaron and explosive talent from Nate was a very fitting dynamic, SPAM definitely felt like the band that you’d hire at your party to get everyone in a good mood.

The highlight of their set was the crowd putting their soul into “End of the Road” by Boyz to Men, a passionate ending to their hit song set. SPAM is definitely set to be a well-known band thanks to their charm and wit, and ability to get the crowd belting along with them while they bust out acoustic versions of hit after hit. If you like to party, then you should definitely look out for SPAM playing near you.
– Sherman Leung


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Banyan Bay Ensemble

  1. Nine Pound Hammer
  2. You are my sunshine
  3. Old #7
  4. Paradise
  5. Worry Man Blues
  6. Sixteen Tons

 

這是The Underground 第一次找來Bluegrass Soul 的樂隊演出, 從樂隊陣容來說已經令人非常期待, 因為樂隊除了正常的五弦琴手(Banjo)和小提琴手外, 還有一位琵琶手。當中樂碰上傳統的美式民謠時, 會擦出甚麼火花?
在第一首翻唱Merle Travis的Nine Pound Hammer已經安排了各人Solo, 向觀眾介紹了各位成員。接著第二首是Jimmie Davis原作, Bob Dylan、 Johnny Cash和Willie Nelson等都曾翻唱的 You Are My Sunshine。主音Michael曾呼籲觀眾一起大合唱, 可惜, 可能因為觀眾年紀較輕的關係, 響應的人不多。之後的Old #7主題為Jack Denial’s Tennessee Whisky, 身為The Underground飲品贊助人的Jack Denials知道一定很高興。第五首為美國著名抗議歌手Woody Guthrie 的Worry Man Blues。Blue Grass Soul對The Underground 聽眾來說確是比較新鮮的曲風。可是Banyan Bay Ensemble唱的歌曲中, 除了第四的Paradise是比較中慢板外, 其餘的速度和編曲都相約。樂隊又喜歡把歌曲結尾重複, 令到演出中後段有失去初初的新鮮感。另外, 可能是琵琶的咪高風問題, 琵琶的聲音並不太明顯, 難以聽得出中西結合的火花。但亦非常感謝他們為現場觀眾帶來充滿美國南部風情的演出。
– Dicky Kwong

Banyan Bay Ensemble surprised everyone with their Bluegrass / Americana style with a 琵琶 (Pi pa, traditional Chinese lute), Violin, Guitar, Cello and Banjo, they started off with classics like “Nine Pound Hammer” by Merle Travis and “You are my Sunshine” by Willie Nelson, the venue turned into an old-style American barn complete with square dancing from the crowd. Drinks abound, the atmosphere turned extra cozy with the band performing “Old No. 7” by The Devil Makes Three in respect to Jack Daniels, thanking him for the good times.

The Americana style really brought the crowd out of its shell, with chatter left and right and smiles all around, I’m glad I got to see the crowd mingle. Banyan Bay Ensemble truly displayed professional musicianship, with the band listening in for each other for impromptu breaks, solos and jams every now and then. The addition of a traditional Chinese instrument was a real hit, and fit together very well with the band despite it originating completely different from a completely different part of the world, unlike the other instruments.

Finishing off with “Paradise”, “Worrie Man Blues” and “Sixteen tons”, the band impressed and wowed the crowd with their skill, musicianship, and energy as they sang the night away, right into delta blues America. Banyan Bay Ensemble is a truly unique band, and not one to be missed.
– Sherman Leung


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Champs Band

  1. Delilah
  2. Sophisticated Lady
  3. Have You Ever See The Rain
  4. Golden Slumber
  5. Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word
  6. Total Eclipse of The Heart
  7. Love Potion #9
  8. Crying Machine
  9. The Letter

 

The Champs Band是灣仔The Champs Bar的駐場樂隊。60年代已開始夾Band, 他們可能是The Underground中最夠資歷的樂隊。

在出場唱第一首歌曲時, 我才發現他們的男主音原來是7,80年代著名歌手 “大L” 張孝武, 當他用最為人熟悉的沙啞聲音唱出Tom Jones的名曲Delilah, 強而有穿透力的聲線頓時讓全場觀眾精神為之一振。接力的是由女主音唱出Motown Funky版的爵士經典Sophisticated Lady。女主音續唱Creedence Clearwater Revival的Have You Ever Seen The Rain亦十分精彩。大L再次出場演繹Beatles的Golden Slumber和Elton John的Sorry Seem To Be The The Hardest Word, 原本Elton John版本的Sorry Seem To Be The The Hardest Word是鋼琴主導, The Champs Band卻把它變成Blues Rock版本, 斷續又富節奏感的電吉他Fill In令人難忘。之後的Total Eclipse Of The Heart可能是比較低音域, 女主音好像有點走音。尾二的Crying Machine是電他手的Solo表演, 順道一提該曲亦是8級電結他考試的考試歌曲。
The Champs Band表演時甚有80年代酒廊樂隊的風味, 壓場感十足。他們是最符合當晚主題, 經改編的翻唱表演。他們的每一首歌都經改頭換面, 實在是一群非常值得尊重的Band壇老前輩。
– Dicky Kwong

The Champs start off their set with a tribute to Tom Jones. The beginning sounds somewhat different to the original which is good since this is the point of this show… to play covers in an original way. The guitarist shows off his skills as his fingers make its way back and forth down the frets of the guitar in seeming less ease. This guitar solo to start the show was similar to something you would hear on the From Dusk ‘til Dawn soundtrack. At this point, I still had no idea what song they are playing. When the vocalist, Big Al, combines with the guitarist, Nelson Kwok, for an awesome lead up they are applauded by the crowd before the beat kicks in. We get to the chorus which is when I realized that this is a Tom Jones’ song. Big Al does Tom Jones justice with his magnificent voice. Lots of people are swaying to the music and the song ended in a beautiful vocal crescendo and a huge applause. Then Big Al says, “We don’t do originals. We do covers. But, a little bit different.”

We get a change of lead vocals for the next song as Dorinda Ma takes centre stage and asks us, “Are you ready to dance?” Dorinda has the diva vibe going from her stage presence and amazing vocals. She reminds me of a female Bon Scott because of the hat she was wearing. The crowd enjoyed the song and returned the favour with their applause.

Dorinda also sings on the next song which starts off with piano keys by Eddie Chu. She is sounding as strong as Tina Turner as she sings her version of “Have You Ever Seen The Rain”. Tony Cheung on bass and John Bucks have such solid performances that you don’t ever notice one slipup, though compared to the other three they are in the background.

Big Al asks the crowd, “Do you like the Beatles?” We all agreed. “Well, this is kind of like it.” he said. Golden Slumber started to put people in a sleep and how couldn’t it after the previous songs just shocked our systems? It gave the crowd an opportunity to socialize some more as they became more of a backing track. What was great about this song and made it Beatles-esque is that it had good backing vocals which created a beautifully harmony. The drum solo put the crowd in a frenzy and upped the tempo. The drummer was so good that he sounded like a professional Kumquat squasher! Or so someone told me.
Big Al sings an Elton John song and in it he sound more husky and gruff. The guitar sounds cool in this song. A friend points out how ‘glasses John Lennon’ is stealing the show. Who is that? Well, that would have to be Nelson on guitar again.

Everyone’s favourite song of the night would have to be “Total Eclipse of the Heart”. This song was more recognizable from the lyrics and put a smile on everyone’s face. Dorinda sang this song with a strong Chinese accent which definitely made it different. Not quite right. Something needs to ‘Turn Around, Bright Eyes!” There is another opportunity for ‘glasses John Lennon’ to show whose boss as Total Eclipse wound down and The Champs band received a huge applause again from the crowd who were previously stuck into place.
“Love Potion #9” was a hip swinging song which also got a huge applause. This version was cool because it went so quickly we didn’t even notice it. That and I had had a few Jack Daniels and cola by this stage.

They said that they would do their next cover for the night a little differently. It was a song for level 8 guitar students apparently? There he goes again… stealing the show. Guess who it is? It’s ‘Glass John Lennon’! Don’t know the original so I don’t know how different it was. Just know that the guitar sounds awesome in this song. Level 8 hey? I wonder what that would be on Guitar Hero?

The Champs ended their set with a ninth song. Big Al sang “The Letter” in his gruff voice. It was one of the kinds of songs that summed up the whole night’s performance. It was an awesome version that sent me on a trip and reminding me of good times and good times to be had. 😉
– Cain McInerney


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Revolution (意大利/中國 Italy/China)

1. Heroes
2. Rain
3. All Right Now
4. Word Up
5. What A Wonderful World
6. My Sharona
7. Where The Street Have No Name
8. Keep On Rocking In The Free World
9. Are You Gonna Be My Girl
10. We Are An American Band
11. Shout
12. Smell Like Teen Spirit
Encores: Alive & 飞地更高 fei de geng gao (汪峰 Wang Feng)

Revolution 由四位現居東莞, 剛陽味十足的意大利男仕組成, 主音全程戴上黑超, 外型有點似U2的Bono, 不知是否這原因, 他們亦有翻唱U2的Where The Street Have No Name.

他們是當晚原創翻唱音樂會的壓軸表演樂隊。可能因為之前的三隊樂隊都有超時, 所以他們開始表演的時候都不早, 有些觀眾已經走了。但是留下來的觀眾過半都是身穿Revolution Band Tee的女歌迷, 南歐男仕的魅力果然利害。
他們第一首表演歌曲為David Bowie的Hero, 之後是英倫Hard Rock樂隊The Cult的Rain和同樣是Hard Rock樂隊Free的All Right Now。但是今晚原創翻唱音樂會的宗旨為演出有原創成份的翻唱歌曲。但是在開始的三首歌中, 除了將Hero簡化並變成Hard Rock版外, 其實原創成份不高。縱觀當晚Revolution的setlist, What A Wonderful World算是比較重原創成份。其餘的都是像處理Hero般, 將其簡化成Hard Rock版本。

雖然原創成份不足, 但主音的聲線都可持續地唱接近1小時的高水準Hard Rock唱腔, 而且, 他熱衷於和現場觀眾互動, 令一眾男女歌迷非常投入地起舞。亦為演出加回不少分數。
– Dicky Kwong

Revolution came onstage and immediately exuberated a cool stage presence. They got the show rolling with “Heroes”. A David Bowie cover which was very powerful rock song with a strong drum beat which quickly got the blood rushing. It was hard rock done to perfection.

The vocalist encouraged the crowd to help get the song started with some audience clapping and they built into the intro. “Here comes the rain!” The vocalist was in top form, but why was he wearing sunglasses inside? Was he trying to hide his identity or was it just a fashion statement?

All Right Now” sounds really similar to the original. There were no flaws that I have to comment on so I have to talk about what the guitarist is wearing… a waist coat without a shirt? Why does he need a shirt when he plays the guitar so well without one.

Their next song had me thinking Jesus Christ! Because it was so damn loud. It was time to join the dance floor and boogie on down with everyone else as I listened to the impressive guitar riffs. It was late but they still had power.
Their version of “What a Wonderful world” was way different from the original. It was a punk song that got most people dancing… or moshing. Then someone reminded me it was a cover of a cover
(The Ramones) This song led into more dancing as they played “My Sharona” to perfection. So much like the original or did I miss how they did it differently? Then they played “Keep on Rocking in the Free World” and during one of the songs the vocalist does a roundhouse kick? Awesome. Again people tell me that they are playing well but sounding just like a cover band.

Are you going to be my girl?” Catches my attention as it is a popular Jet song. Their version of it was really fast. Something different. Nice.
The drums started the American song in which they are supposed to say “We are an American band!” but instead they say “We are an Italian band!” I think this is quite clever until it gets too repetitive and then they swap from being American and Italian bands, and vice versa. It gets a bit confusing as he interchanges freely between both countries, but puts a smile on my face.

Revolution starts their ELEVENTH song sometime past 2am… but they were still rocking… yeah! “Shout” was a loud song which was quite heavy compared to their previous songs, but still very similar to the original. Then it was supposed to be their last song and it was a good way to finish because it was “Smells like Teen Spirit”. I totally love this song and rocked out until I was ready to go home.
They played a Pearl Jam song for an encore from the screams of their die-hard fans in Revolution t-shirts. Then, they decided to play another encore in Chinese…. How many songs are we now? What’s the time? Revolution were a great band. They play covers well, but tonight in my eyes they didn’t do the event justice as they didn’t play covers in an original way. However, kudos to Revolution as they play the covers just as sick as the originals.
– Cain McInerney

Photos by ​​Angus Leung.
由​Angus Leung攝影。
Poster by ​Freya Kwok.​
海報由Freya Kwok。

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