[轉貼]Interview: Supper Moment – Time Out Hong Kong
Before launching their new album at Time Out’s Big Night Out, Cantorock stars Supper Moment tell Mark Tjhung about how, as the world’s changed, so have they… Photography by Calvin Sit
Sitting around an adorable space in a Kwun Tong industrial building, there’s something instantly likeable about the four members of Supper Moment. Perhaps it’s something to do with their general approachable demeanour, which belies their status as one of the most popular acts to emerge from the second wave of ‘band sound’ outfits over the last few years. Or the way they’re joking around like an ordinary group of early-20s Hongkongers, jesting about the fact that they occasionally call drummer, Hugh Chan, ‘huge’, with laughter as the only embellishment. Or perhaps it’s in the humble way they respond to the idea that, over the last four years, the quartet of frontman Sunny Chan, guitarist Martin Leung, bassist Billy ‘CK’ Cheung and drummer Hugh Chan have emerged as an influential voice of their generation.
In many ways, it’s this modest relatability that has found them an affinity with an ever-growing swathe of young fans since the release of their 2010 debut EP <<等等…>> (Etc…) – indeed, the band’s name, which refers to cherishing the simple times with family and friends, reflects the feeling of many Hongkongers of being increasingly overwhelmed by the pace of our city – and on their upcoming new eight-track album, <<世界變了樣>> (The World Has Changed), which they launch at Time Out’s very own Big Night Out on April 25, they’re further channelling the zeitgeist of the city’s youth in both their sound and themes.
“This coming album, I think we have started to break through our comfort zone,” says Hugh Chan, before Sunny Chan takes up the thought: “This time we have tried to record everything and do it in our own studio, to capture our own sound.”
That sound, the foursome collectively say, is a slight departure from the acoustic-leaning aesthetic many may associate with Supper Moment. “Our sound is quite hard to describe. It’s raw, not distorted, but you can still feel the texture from us,” says Cheung.
Not just that, but it’s also considerably heavier than many of the tracks on their previous three EPs and their 2011 debut LP, <<再次心跳>> (Heartbeat Again) – an evolution in the band’s sound that has been spurred on by the general subject matter of the album.
“On this album, we wanted to bring something we’d never tried before. This is also a breakthrough for us because all of us have not just grown up with soft music. We all grew up with heavy music as well, but we just haven’t felt comfortable producing heavier songs before,” says Hugh. Adds Sunny: “We are not trying to play with sounds. I think we want to put more spirit into our music. In 2011, we were acoustic, but for this album, we wanted to try to play heavier because of what we wanted to say in this album about society: that the world’s changed and there are some things happening right now, and we feel so angry.”
Some of the recent singles released last year have already foreshadowed this evolution, both on a musical and thematic level. Their song << 機械人>> (Robot) is a rollicking and aggressive pop rock track that features some of the most complex lead guitar riffs within the group’s repertoire, working as the foundation to the song’s commentary on the National Education saga of 2012. In addition, their popular tune <<無盡>> (Endless), an optimistic sing-along rock ballad (see below), has become an anthem for supporters of HKTV.
While there are certainly overt political elements to some of their new material, Supper Moment are also quick to point out that they’re not, nor wish to be, a political band. “We are not very strong in this part, we can just speak out about what we think, we are not promoting some political viewpoint,” says Hugh Chan. “We don’t want to judge if the issue is right or wrong. Mostly, we just want to encourage people to think, rather than to tell them what we think the answer is. Our songs are always about encouragement to think rather than just giving the answers. Naturally, our songs are open-ended.”
While their music has definitely moved toward heavier pastures, Supper Moment is stripping it all back again for Time Out’s Big Night Out acoustic special. And while confessing that they don’t get many opportunities to revisit their unplugged setup anymore, they say they’re excited about going back to their roots, with all new arrangements of many of their songs. “When we do acoustic shows, we mainly play some more melodic and slower songs. We actually have a special arrangement for Robot. Robot is a very heavy song, but we’re going to play it differently,” says Sunny Chan. “It’s kind of bossa nova.”
If you want to be one of the first to get your hands on Supper Moment’s new album, and for a rare, intimate opportunity to see them return to their acoustic origins, get along to Time Out’s Big Night Out. We’ll see you there…