The boys have hit 10! After releasing three albums over the span of the past decade, Kyoto Protocol is looking forward to their 10th Anniversary Show, on the 23rd of November at The Bee in Publika.
It’s been a while since they produced their latest album, ‘The Pen is Mightier’ at Maveriq and we sure do miss them! The live studio album, with memorable songs ‘Delta Wing’, ‘The End’ and ‘Guilty Plea’ was recorded and mixed here in 2018.
It was great working with Kyoto Protocol and according to Paul, ‘It was a nice refreshing take to how musicians approach songwriting, especially during tracking days… Everyone was well-prepared for recording sessions. We’d track the whole band together, usually, the drummer Shan first to give him his own vibe, then overdub it with bass, guitar and finally vocals. A lot of the initial recordings that were done were the backbone as the album recording.’
We managed to convince Fuad and Shaq to give us their time the week leading up to their show to share a few thoughts with us about turning 10.
We started with the obvious, “How’s it like, knowing you’ve hit your 10th Anniversary?”
Fuad: It’s been pretty scary to be honest, coming to terms that we have been doing this for 10 years – that I have been with my band for 10 years. It’s scary because there are some things that I feel like we haven’t achieved yet and this is the thing with having a full-time job, you need to put all your commitment into making music. And I do think about it, maybe if I took a year or two off and focused on music full-time, we wouldn’t be where we are now. Perhaps we’ll be closer to what we’d like to achieve. So yeah, there are some regrets.
Shaq: I guess it’s a little bit bittersweet, it’s something to be really proud of in terms of… we made it this far as a band – hitting the 10-year mark. A lot of bands that we had started playing with when we first started are no longer even together, some of them don’t even play music anymore, so I feel a sense of achievement with everyone sticking together and continuing to do this. So there’s obviously something that we are doing right as a group. But if you had to ask me 10 years ago, where would you see yourself 10 years from now, hmm with the same people, yes, maybe a bit further along? Nonetheless, this is something we are all pretty proud of. I’m especially pretty proud of it. It’s been a crazy 10 years.
“What can we expect from your show on Saturday?”
Fuad: It’s a pretty big undertaking; we are going to be performing our longest show ever, as a band. Ninety-minutes and it’s going to be a show that celebrates the music scene and the bands that brought us to where we are today. The opening bands, we share such a heart-warming story with them. ‘Me Gusta!!’ they are from East Malaysia and are performing in the peninsular for the first time. So I encourage all ticket holders to make use of this, come early, check out the bands opening for us and celebrate our music scene. I believe there is A LOT better music now than there was 10 years ago – no offense to anyone. It’s Publika, if you’re tired… go get a massage you know? Then come back, but definitely come early.
A massage! Why hasn’t anyone thought of this?
“What are the influences that have guided you these 10 years?”
Fuad: Definitely Jennifer Thompson. She has been an ever-present supporter and more importantly, a mentor, to us for the past 10 years. This is someone who has seen the highest of highs when it comes to music in Malaysia, and yet spends most of her time encouraging the lowest of lows, giving them the strength to power forward.
“Looking back these 10 years, would you have done anything differently?”
Fuad: Well, I guess just put more effort and commitment into our stuff.
Shaq: Hmm, interesting. Every decision we have ever done, or every decision we’ve ever made, we made it somewhat as a collective group. There has not been an incident where I feel ‘Oh, if we hadn’t had done that things would have worked out differently for us’. We’ve done the best that we can. Of course, if you know we did a few more rehearsals here and there… but that doesn’t really count! So no, I wouldn’t have changed anything. Probably the only thing that most people talk about is like ‘Oh shit, should you have work at the same time?’. “Maybe if you weren’t working could you have gone further?”, you know? The whole, throw all your eggs into the basket and ride out the wave. We’ve made smart decisions along the way and I wouldn’t have changed anything, no.
“What’s in store for you next?”
Shaq: Everybody’s overarching goals in the band can differ from person to person. Obviously I would love to maybe try to tour Europe or Australia, in the next five years or so. Put out another album or two? Play some festivals overseas and headline some festivals in Malaysia. I suppose in terms of musicianship, that is what we want to do. The other thing I would like to try and do is actually work with some up and coming acts, to either help produce them in one way or another… stay within the business itself and try and do more things.
And there we have it! Congratulations on turning 10, Kyoto Protocol! Listen to their music here and visit the Facebook event page to learn more about their 10th Anniversary Show this Saturday, on the 23rd.
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