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The Observatory In Concert

Gig Review written by olibia & juzbum

The Observatory In Concert The concert I've been waiting for ever since Pure Rock received news of The Observatory deciding on this 2 day event. If you have read the BayBeats reviews, you would have guessed by now that I'm probably a fan of theirs. Not that it is a lie anyway. I can safely say that this is one of the most decent local bands in Singapore. Diversity of musical influences is not all bad; put it together and you get The Observatory.

When I arrived, it was about 10 minutes to 8pm and the Substation was already packed with people waiting in anticipation for the doors to open. Some people were still trying to get tickets, but only to find that they've all been sold out for the night. Just as we (friends and I) were about to complain about the heat for the 100th time, we were allowed into the Guinness Theatre.

The place was very nicely set, dimly lit lights hung from the ceiling and soft music in the background until Vivian (keyboardist) and Leslie (guitarist/lead vocalist) emerged from the curtained backstage. The concert was started off with what seemed a really short 5 song acoustic set. Having had a bad experience of sound quality at WCG the day before, it was a huge relieve to hear a big difference here with the Observatory. They did a few songs that are not found in the album, the lyrics spoke mostly of life and its happenings. Here, Leslie did all of the singing.

The full band played only after the 15 minute interval. Every song performed here was from the album, except for 2, one which was played for the encore being an older piece. The other song had a slowly built up instrumental start. It was almost haunting with the additional effects from what was shown on the screen (visual culture). The only difference between listening to The Observatory on CD and live is that you get to see how these people actually play their instruments in such a way that you want to video tape the whole process to watch, listen and understand. A whole load of emotions involved here.

And as if hearing them on CD isn't good enough, hearing them live was even better. Every cent spent on the ticket was definitely worth it. [olibia]


Woohooo. The day had finally come. I had been waiting for this day for a long time. Well to me it was. Ever since they announced on baybeats that they were having a gig on the 28th and 29th of August 2003 at substation, I couldn't wait for it. A wide-ranged of influences integrated nicely, that is their songs.

When we arrived, I am shocked to see so many people waiting outside of the Substation Guinness Theater. So what could we do but queue hoping to get great seats. Then this guy came up to us asking for extra tix. Judging from all this, it is a sold-out gig. When the doors open, all rush in to get nice seats.

After seating, we were treated to a nice soft music playing in the background. The way the theater was decorated was splendid. It is simple but enhances the atmosphere. We were enjoying the music, when Leslie (vocals/guitarist) and Vivian (vocals/keyboardist) came out from the backstage. They started with an acoustic set. On the 2nd song, I believe it is called game of blues, I really like the feeling of the song. It is very soulful. And the way Leslie played the guitar, when he played the notes, it sounded whole...fat...juicy. I think this is because when he plays the single notes he did not use a pick but uses thumb picking. Vivian played as usual really good. She did the keyboard thing, I do not know what it is called. Well they played in total 5 songs. Most of the songs are about life. Well they ended the acoustic set at around 8.35pm. And then there is a 15min interval.

After the interval, the full band played. Most of the songs they played were on the album. One of their songs, I believe has an eerie and weird sound for an intro. Well it is weird but great. One of the song has weird lyrics. My perception of that song is that, human beings are just an experiment of life. Study real well, get stable job, get house, get married, have children... and etc. And from the lyrics, I believe that for one not to do these, they are look down upon. Well that is my perception of the song called, I think it is 'The Experiment'. Anyway, when you are there you could see, how skillful individually they are. No one tries to out stage the other. Instead they play together and this produce great and tight music and playing. When you see they play live, you could just feel the music. It is like you are there. Furthermore with the help of the clip they are showing on a screen behind them, you couldn't help but feel the music.

Well, in ending, I just have to say that they are one of the decent local bands around here. If one are not convince that they are good at baybeats, they are surely convinced after this show. Emotions, emotions lots of it in this gig. That $8 is worth it. [juzbum]

The Observatory

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