Live review from Tri-Accident “Pointless Filler” Live
1. Miss Pinky
3. Black House
4. Asian Fusion
5. 子孫救星 (feat. Subyub Lee)
6. Complicated (feat. Subyub Lee)
7. POTF (feat. Hin & Cynric)
8. 圈 (feat. Hin & 細樂)
9. Timeless (with Cowhead)
10. Mountains (with Cowhead)
11. N.M.T. (with Cowhead)
13. Turnspit Dog
15. We Will Rock You
The build-up to Tri-Accident is huge – seldom in this town do you see a packed house alive with anticipation before the first chord has been struck – and when the band struts onto the stage with maximum fanfare, it’s clear they’ll be giving 100% to their loyal fans on their big night out.
Tri-Accident’s influences are abundantly clear – they cite classic and hard rock outfits including Guns N’ Roses and Led Zeppelin – but the likes of Bon Jovi and Joe Satriani are also plenty audible, whether intended or not, and there’s more than a hint of contemporary rock outfits like Fallout Boy. Like the classic rockers and unlike many bands of the intervening decades, they’re not ashamed of some choreography and make enthusiastic use of the available real estate, with frontman Alexander bounding energetically about the stage, ably assisted by axeman Johnny and bassist Zing.
Black House delivers some welcome thrashy, pop-punk moments, but the opening few songs are undermined by an overly loud and clean sound on the lead vocal which threatens to give the set a karaoke flavour. But we’re distracted from that possibility by the arrival of the first special guest, Subyub Lee, who slings a guitar and brings an additional vocal along with plenty of LA strut. The extra voice is a solid addition, although harmonies would have helped it sound less like a shouting match.
We now take a brief moment to learn that it is impossible to make Happy Birthday sound good.
The first special guest subs out and the next batch arrives. Hin crunches out satisfyingly chunky riffs for two songs while wielding his guitar like a superhero with flaming sword. Consecutive guest vocalists Cynric and 細樂punch out rap-metal and death metal lyrics, respectively, and the latter combines with Hin’s exploits to deliver the most powerful moments of the night.
At this point it’s noticeable that drummer Cyrus is being referred to as Jesus. Is it the hairstyle?
This night isn’t about playing through the new Tri-Accident album; it’s about unexpected, one-off events. Cowhead resumes the stage to form a nine-piece supergroup – “Cow-Accident” – which even has its own logo, a Pink Floyd-inspired mashup of the two founding groups’ iconography. The sound doesn’t quite reach the Dark Side of the Moon, largely being Cowhead with vocals and some redundant instrumentation, but as an experiment it doesn’t fail despite its semi-rehearsed vibe.
Tri-Accident reorganize in their original form and deliver a few more tracks to remind the audience of what they can find on the “Pointless Filler” CD, before band members set up court on the stage for a lengthy chat about their lives and influences. Lacking Cantonese, all I can say for sure is that Jesus wept. Tri-Accident then finish up with a celebrated, participatory cover to close these memorable proceedings on a crowd-friendly and positive note.
– Brendan Clift
Live review from Sub-Terra #5:
1 Miss Pinky
3 Black House
4 Asian Fusion
6 Turnspit Dog
Zing Chee’s bass came as a surprise at first, before Johnny Chiu’s guitar added some needed definition to the rift, with the drums hurling into the two starting instruments, creating a full on gallop as Miss Pinky began. The momentum began to build and came to a head with Alex starting to sing, his voice already drowned in the gain of three other musicians, making most of the lyrics inaudible. This didn’t seem to deter the band as they continued pressing into the song, hair flying with the beat as Cyrus began assaulting the drums. The song could be an obscure, faster tempo Jane’s Addiction b-side, complete with a breakdown and solo that 12 years ago would be found on the radio, stuck between Breaking Benjamin and Three Days Grace. It was a pummelling introduction to the band left an impression that would continue as the set rolled on.
The rhythm section started up as a truck engine would, with Cyrus flinging the band yet again into another pounding intro for Magnetized, with Johnny starting to look more and more like a Cantonese Merzbow. The guitar quickly took centre stage, initially sounding much like their opener Miss Pinky, it quickly flamed out as Alex filled the gaps with clearer singing than the previous song. I must give credit to the low end from the Bass on this track. The venue and its sound already were incredibly bottom-heavy by the time the guys took the stage, but his technique while playing was much of the driving force in the song, allowing the guitar to rest easy in the tempo and the rest of the structure to form a solid foundation it created.
“Do you guys want to see something more technical?” Alex said as silence answered him from out in the crowd. “We’re doing it anyways” he finished, turning towards Cyrus on the drum as he counted in the song. That was an incredibly respectable and almost punk way of answering the question asked to the audience, one they seemed reluctant to answer. The song Black House blew up into miniature solos all around, each respectably taking the time to allow the other member to take centre stage, roaring around from one member to the other as if a spotlight was making the rounds. Each fretboard being run up and down by both hands of both the bass and guitarist, finishing every bar in a staccato fashion. It began taking the same route and chords as many of the other songs have, but with the amount of energy being ejected outwards from the speakers to the back wall, defying anyone hipster enough to try and thoroughly dissect its structure, sucking the enjoyment from a naturally fun song. The ending came from nowhere as Alex locked in with the instrumental to create a solid finishing melody, ending the climatic scene in a whoosh.
A quick respite for the technical difficulty episode that was bound to happen at this point, Johnny switched into the Line 6 aside from him. The gear head in me was screaming bloody murder when I saw the cord go into that amp, but I kept my cool, as it seemed with his modded out Strat and good looking pedal set up, no matter what, it could produce a listenable tone regardless. This song Asian Fusion reminds me in a rush of Jane’s Addiction and Red Hot Chili Peppers, an influence that does not go unnoticed when listening. Not that it’s a bad thing, as again their stage presence carries each song regardless of lyrics or similar chord structures, it just becomes predictable in a way, and in that way slightly underwhelming. By this time in the set, the remaining people in the venue had advanced into the front, starting to dance and headbang along with this new song. The excellent start-stop dynamic was a breath of fresh air from the set rigid structures of the last few songs, as the bass led the way into the chorus and allowed the guitar and drums to catch themselves as they fell into each bar, ending in a splash of much-needed colour.
The marching beat that took centre stage on Complicated reminded me again of the opening song, a trend that had by this time become familiar. Alex did a good job here vocally, with lyrics clear and understandable in the chorus, delivery something that seemed barely out of reach all night with the constant low volume vocals being engulfed by the sonic attack of the three other musicians. The verses were a highlight for the drums and guitar as well, Cyrus could restrain the high-hat right on the beat and allowing it to hiss almost in harmony with the chopping of the guitar’s high end. A well-rounded song, but nothing the night hadn’t seen before.
Charging forward with Turnspit Dog with a single rift as so many of the other songs had done, Alex yelled out just like RCHP’s Around the World intro and the song began with their now typical galloping rhythm. The bass and guitar were locked in a surprising amount by how much they beat the hell out of their instruments, flailing around and almost knocking into each other with each bar or pause. At this point, the few people still left moving along to the song were up in the front, dancing in the wide open space between them and the band. It was a testament to their total commitment on the stage, something through the show I admired greatly. The four of them began looking around at each other, queuing in for the next portion of the song, before the signal was given for the song to end, erupting into a noxious wave of cymbal crashes and feedback. He made that line 6 work I’ll tell you.
In conclusion, Tri-Accident’s acceptance of their place and willingness to make that simple and already defined style and aesthetic of extreme bar rock/post-grunge music run the smoothest and most passionate way possible, proving to me the merit and conviction behind their act. A band has one real responsibility when playing live at a venue, and that is to commit to the action and give the audience a great show no matter their size, acceptance, or enthusiasm. The great bands I’ve seen always led by this example, getting into their songs as they played, instead of waiting around for each chorus to swing by as they clumsily jump into the bridge and then verse. Tri-Accident, on the contrary, made an audience dwindling in size and excitement, already tired from the standing still listening to the other bands that night, get up, and dance passed 12:00 in the morning with a seizure inducing effects show buzzing away behind their heads. That took passion, and that took a willingness to let go of whatever preconceived notions of grandeur they might have had before the show, using the music to impress instead of the image. They’ve earned my respect and admiration as a real live band and one that should be praised for that fact, instead of criticized for it.
– John Glenn
Live review from Planetrox China Final 2016:
1. Miss Pinky
3. Black House
4. Turnspit Dog
For an example of a band made up of talented musicians in their own rights, look no further than Tri-Accident. Led by vocalist Alexander Tong, regulars on the local scene gave it a damn good shot at the Planetrox competition with their fiery brand of hard rock and old-school rebel spirit.
From the AC/DC guitar and shrieking cat wails of opener Miss Pinky to the intricate finger-tapping and high-pitched fretwork of Black House, Tri-Accident’s set was a relentless six-string worship. Calling on influences from Black Sabbath to Airborne to Guns ‘n’ Roses, lead guitarist Johnny Chiu ripped through blinding solos, while the extremely talented drummer Cyrus Tse was fascinating to watch as he embellished his rhythms with fancy stick twirls.
On last song TurnSpit, bassist Zing Chee got funky with strummed slap bass before being joined by Chiu’s dazzling Sweet Child Of Mine solo. Judges probably felt the band’s sound was rather too derivative for a winning score, but there was no question Tri-Accident knows how to put on a good show.
– El Jay
Live review from The Underground “Back to its Roots” Festival Part 2:
1. Turnspit Dog
2. Miss Pinky
3. Asian Fusion
5. Black House
Tri-Accident在上年的Battle of the Band 未能入圍決賽實在可惜，但是有實力之人必定會得到別人賞識。他們早已在Underground的Jägershow演出，今次重回AIA冬日嘉年華的場地演出而非比賽，心情應該輕鬆不少。發揮可能都因為心情而有所提升，所以技驚四座絕對能夠形容當晚Tri-Accident當晚的演出。無論是由Funk的Magnetized或是Hard Rock的Transp，成員都會在Fill in的位置加入花巧的技術，不斷的給觀眾驚喜。由其是結尾曲《Black House》傳統的Hard rock 風格配上bass手Zing和結他手Johnny快速的taping，令整個Tri-Accident的演出都看得令人目定口呆。
– Dicky Kwong
With a very sweet, declaration that they are going to warm the audience on a rather cold January night, Tri-Accident Launch into their first track with an anything but warm hard rock sound. More so, it’s dark and hard but great.
Part Rage Against the Machine, Part Godsmack and a bit of Audioslave, Tri-Accident’s first song was pretty much exactly what that sounds like. Rocking licks, some hard drumming and a pretty badass guitar solo.
Their second, Miss Pinky, was dedicated to the ladies in the house, but I wasn’t sure what kind of ladies they’re into cause the songs was a cross between Led Zeppelin and Lenny Kravitz. If you could have only been there, cause it sounded awesome.
At this point, I have to give props to the sound guys because they really nailed this stage, which wasn’t an easy place to mix.
Asian Fusion, continued the guitar onslaught, but the verse, was definitely much groovier than their first two tracks. It definitely had a bit of Bon Jovi’s Keep the Faith’s bass line but the feel of an early Chilli Peppers song too. The rhythm section really drove this song, and it was as much a pleasure to watch them interact with their instruments as it was to listen.
Magnetized opens with a cool little drum fill, and then it goes into familiar territory. It gave off a very heavy Soundgarden and Creed vibe. The crushing guitar riffs really drove this penultimate of songs. Again the interplay of the musicians was key to making this song work, especially at the bridge where everyone seems to have a small moment to shine.
They closed the show with Black House, which started like Dream Theater and then jumped into a Green Day type verse, but with the bastard love child Led Zeppelin. It is the Jon Snow of Rock music for you Game of Thrones fans.
Tri-Accident have been a band on my radar for a year now, and it has been cool to see their progression as a band. In the last year, they have refined their sound and gotten tighter. Their song writing, has improved since I last saw them and I look forward to any show they will play in the future.
– Jon Lee
Live review from Underground Jäger Show:
2. Asian Fusion
4. Black House
單是一支結他、一支bass、鼓、vocal的無縫配合，已令Tri-accident的hard rock樂曲編制非常飽滿，成員們玩音樂超過十年，難怪甚有大將之風。開首的《Complicated》已霸氣盡現，三個樂器各有春秋，互相配合卻又層次分明，bridge更是華麗得使人神魂癲倒。《Magnetized》由重覆的guitar riff首尾呼應，配合扎實而帶點花巧的bass line，《Black House》是相對標準的rock ballad旋律，成員們加插了各自的solo，讓觀眾一睹各人的精緻技巧。最後的《Hey》是較慢的一首，vocal和吉他有如輪唱般互相呼應，最後vocal連綿且燥鬱的「yeah…yeah…yeah…」帶點grunge rock的氣息。相對不斷展現技巧的樂器，vocal的表現較為平實，但整體表現仍屬超班，極之牽動全場氣氛！
– Lily Sung
Tri-accident started poorly in my books because they took an extra long time to setup. I am not sure what their problem or problems were, maybe they were tri-accidents as their name suggests. But, this is never a good start when you leave the audience hanging too long between sets. Luckily they were given an awesome intro from Chris B who declared them as her current favourite live band. After her comment she was coerced into having a Jäger shot with all of the band members.
I instantly knew why they had become Chris’ favourite live band because their music took me back to the 90s and good old grunge. There first song, ‘Complicated’ reminded me of early Soundgarden and the album Bad Motor Finger… which I love. When the vocalist, Alex, started to sing the song it lost its grunge vibe and became more poppy. On guitar, Johnny Chiu, had some really nice riffs. Then the vocals took the lead and the music was more in the background. I didn’t want the music to take a back seat so I patiently waited for the awesome guitar riffs to return and give the song the kick in the ass it needed. The lyrics “It’s so complicated” were my least favourite part of the song and were sung over and over again. Wait a second… isn’t that an Avril Lavigne song?
“Asian Fusion” sounded like a cover of The White Stripes song, ‘No one knows’. Musically it was a very strong song and in this song the bassist, Zing Chee (cool name!), took control while the vocals took a backseat because I could barely hear the singer. So, vocally it was not so strong, but musically it was awesome. As with an earlier band this evening, he was singing in English but I struggled to make out what he was going on about. Despite this there was a huge applause when the song was over.
Their next song, ‘Magnet Red’, was fast and energetic and it flew by before I could even write any notes about it. Was I distracted by the Jäger girls at the time or was I just really into the song that I forgot to use my pen. We will never know… mmm Jäger girls… I mean shots!
Alex told us to “Check this out!” as he introduced their fourth song for the night. I did appreciate that he spoke to the audience in English and Cantonese, compared to an earlier band in the evening. It was an early Chili Peppers song musically, but vocally he sounded like Blink 182. But, that is being generous. This song sounded very familiar maybe because of that 90s grunge vibe. I liked it!
“Hey” which is not such an original song title turned out to have a lovely intro that kept me in that plane of existence that we call grunge. Oh how I miss grunge! This was not the type of music that you would expect from a Hong Kong indie band. It was so refreshing to hear. I didn’t mind the vocals but other people pointed out that he didn’t quite hit the right notes, but I guess at this stage I was too mesmerized by the performance of Zing, Johnny and Tse. This song reminded me of Alice in Chains. It was like they were imitating them but not quite getting it right. But, still a pretty good effort.