The group is an assembled treasure chest of diverse talents from pop, rock and jazz, with members whose musical resumes are enough to give any purist the chills.
Stellar vocal-trio Allan Moo, Sherlyn Chia and Annabel Soh have each released albums and worked on high-profile performances in their respective genres of Mandarin and English pop. Moo enjoys tenures on Top 10 Charts throughout Asia, while Ocean Butterflies vocal coach Chia counts Taiwan-based actss like By2 as her students.
Add to the fray veteran drummer Daniel Chew, bassist Stanley Chng, guitarist Shadrach Chew and keyboardists Ivan Ong and Estella Sia, and the band’s name seems like an embarrassing miscalculation to anyone with ten fingers. You can almost hear mental lightbulbs clicking on around the room when Moo leans over the mic to announce, “There are eight of us in the band, but we’ve named ourselves after seven, the number of completeness!”
|PHOTOS: Gabriel Seow|
Band.Se7en may be new on the block, but they have already hit the ground running. Despite grueling individual work schedules and having only three weeks to get their act together, the band debuted to packed bodies and set-long raucous applause. It was on no modest stage either — DXO has played host to music events like the Singapore Battle of The Bands Semi Finals, and famous performers like Boy George and Melanie C (of the Spice Girls).
In the club was a veritable list of who’s who, most of whom were no stranger to the stage themselves — including MediaCorp actress Belinda Lee. The mix of yuppies, youngsters in skinny jeans, as well as the occasional suit, meant the band was serenading an audience as patchwork as themselves.
By 9pm — early for a Friday night — elbow space was a scarcity, and a DXO regular was overheard saying, “It’s very happening tonight! More crowded than usual.” A quick check at the door confirmed that the tickets at $20 were almost sold out.The night truly began when Moo’s warm voice spread over the room like an undulating blanket, bringing in hit after hit of familiar Mandarin numbers.
Chia followed up quickly with her own brand of powerhouse vocals, rousing the audience with deliriously joyful English tunes like ‘I Love You Baby’.
The loudest cheers of the night were saved for Soh, whose sweet, soaring vocals wove prettily around delicate keyboard lines and thumping bass beats.
As any bar lizard familiar with the likes of Crazy Elephant, Blu Jazz and Wala Wala will testify, the acid test of a good live band is how well it manages to engage, long after the audience has peered down the bottoms of countless beer mugs. Band.Se7en suffered few moments of disconnect with its capacity crowd, and in between the pulsating strobe lights and emotive wail of Shadrach’s metal strings, the audience stayed riveted, their arms frequently aloft and waving to the beat.
Taking a breather between sets, keyboardist Sia, 26, was glad of the response and energy from the crowd. “It’s our first performance as a band, and we can’t wait to see what comes out of this,” she added optimistically.
With roars of approval still ringing in his ears, at least one member of the audience has little doubt about the band’s potential. “They were fantastic!” said Benji Goh, 24, “If they wrote original songs I wouldn’t mind buying the album.”
Now that Band.Se7en has successfully fleshed out the unique East-West theme with their complementary musical strengths, that looks like the most rewarding progression to take. The rest of us should stay tuned.
For more info on the band, go to www.bandse7en.com