New Beginnings

Monash Music Club certainly kicked off a “New Beginning” of the semester for Monashians on the 10th of March as they brought in local indie pop band, RESORT as headliners for, what I can arguably say was one of the best performances (and nights) in my time here as a student. 

Despite the torrential downpour during the evening that left most of the concert-goers huddling and cramming for shelter, the atmosphere was still tinged with undeniable excitement as a line slowly began to form outside the doors of the badminton courts. The moment we entered the venue at 7.30pm it was as if we had been transported into another world entirely. Pitch black surroundings, with the only source of light being the soft blue glow of the lights on stage provided a beautiful, ethereal effect, signalling that there was going to be a lot in store for the night.  

Q: The moment I entered the venue I was really impressed by the set-up (lighting, audio etc). How long did it take you guys to prepare all of this and what were some of the largest challenges you faced up till D-Day? 

A: We are glad the setup on Friday impressed you. That entire setup took us around 10 hours in total, we actually started the night before so we could have enough time to create the perfect atmosphere for the concert. However when looking at preparation time, the setup including discussing what equipment we needed took around 1-2 weeks to confirm everything with our vendor Martian Backline. Since MMC has worked with them before it was quite a smooth experience and communication was streamlined from there.

Q: Will we ever see RESORT in Monash again (cough cough Monash Cup Closing Ceremony)

A: We were happy to see how pleased the crowd was with RESORT’s show and we’d love to have them back but with the band’s name growing – we’re not so sure if we’ll be able to see RESORT in Monash again due to their packed schedule. But who knows? If they do come again, you’ll definitely hear about it. 

RESORT was not the only performance everyone was looking forward to. The opening acts: Harith Halim Arabi, Dahl and Jensen who are members of our very own Monash Music Club got the crowd pumped up, each displaying their own distinctive musical flair and style, ranging from R&B to rap that absolutely raised the roof. Among the songs performed were: 

  1.  For your body – Harith
  2. Want me bad – Dahl
  3. Mes Garçons – Jensen

Q: For the opening acts, what was it like performing on the same stage as RESORT? 

Dahl: “It is totally unforgettable to share the same stage with RESORT, as an independent artist who is also studying abroad, the milestone in my music life has been set.”

Harith: “It was quite the experience to be able to perform in that setting. The quality of the event itself from the professionalism in how the event was executed to the audio and lighting handling, amazing! To be able to perform on the same stage as RESORT to me meant being able to be part of a community where like minded people are able to share their learnings with each other. RESORT showed passion and dedication in their craft and that motivates me to do the same with mine.”

Jensen: “The most important point for you to take away from my experience is gratitude. I am so grateful to perform next to RESORT and to be given the opportunity by the Monash Music Club. Music is a passion of mine and I have given so much to chase this dream, to make something of myself, that when I heard I was chosen to open for local indie band RESORT, I said yes immediately. It didn’t matter that I had an already existing knee injury, I was going to go 100% in and make sure everyone turns up with me.

After a brilliant showcase of our student talent, it was finally time for RESORT to take the stage.The crowd went wild as they performed their first set which included a wide range of their discography such as: Fix Everything, Pretty Baby and Maybe It’s You. The concert then came to a short, 15 minute intermission, which allowed for the MC to host an interactive trivia session between RESORT and the crowd, with some of the prizes earned being RESORT merch and Grab vouchers. The final announcement during the intermission was the winner of the JBL WAVE 100 TWS giveaway which had been posted earlier on Instagram.

Barely able to catch our breath after the intermission, the band then proceeded with their remaining setlist, driving the crowd wild as they ended with fan favourite: “Terrible Conversations”. However, screams and chants of “ENCORE, ENCORE”, fueled the band to perform “Do It Again” as their final stage. Fortunately, the magic of the night continued with a meet and greet session with RESORT, with fans lining up to take pictures and asking them a few questions about their setlist. I was fortunate enough to have a secondary interview with them, post-mortem and due to scheduling issues, Sek Hao acted as a representative for the answers

Q: I know you guys made your debut roughly around July of 2019. And then of course COVID-19 hit, which must have been a big blow in terms of performing and churning out new music. How did you get through that as a band? And how does it feel to be able to actually meet your audiences live now? 

A: It was pretty tough not gonna lie! We had just started out and had quite a number of opportunities that had to be cancelled ie. a show to play in Melbourne, Australia. I guess we worked things around, prioritised the things we could do at that time (which was releases) and we kept ideating for the next thing. Now, it’s just amazing. We definitely have more on our plates now with live shows back but it’s a joy to see our music come to life with you guys <3

Q: It’s not a secret that the music industry in Malaysia is notoriously difficult to break into, but you guys are doing amazing! Do you have any advice for anyone thinking of getting into the Malaysian music scene? 

A: In the 3 years we’ve been active, the scene has changed and it’s no surprise fr. Content is key now to building an image and a brand. So, definitely look into making good content that represents yourself and being consistent with it.

Q: When I asked a RESORT super fan to recommend me a song, the first one that came to mind was: “Terrible Conversations” (my personal favourite is Pretty Baby now, though), but if you had to personally recommend anyone a song from RESORT what would it be? Also what is THE most terrible conversation you’ve ever had?

A: PRETTY BABY FTW. Hahaha yes, one of the most terrible conversations I’ve ever had concerned talking to somebody I had just known at that time about bowel movements, poop color and frequency of pooping. It also was the best conversation that started off our friendship strong.

The night ended on a high as most of us shuffled off back home for the weekend, exhausted but simultaneously energized after the performances. One thing’s for sure, it’ll be hard for the Monash Music Club to top this event and that the 10th of March will certainly be one of the most memorable nights of the year!

Written by Ashley

Pictures by Tshe, Sean & Xinyi

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