Local bands struggle with identity-an obvious fact with the overkill of MTV-gentrified acts flooding our airwaves. Instead of succumbing to electronics or “the dance factor”, decade-old indie pop darlings Couple have further cemented their blend of asam boi rock on their 3rd album. Their first fully Malay LP is packed with hooky choruses that’ll have all four Beatles (deceased or living) nodding. Melancholic opener ‘Radio’ explores the love-hate relationship between audience, artist and media-kind of like how Queen did on ‘Radio Ga Ga’. One advantage that frontman and lyricist Aidil has is his ability to marry simple words with catchy music. And he does it exceptionally well on love songs like ‘Lagu Cinta Untukmu‘ and ‘Whoa Oh Sayang‘, and shows how far his fixation gets on ‘Gila Bayang‘. Even if ‘Cari Ganti‘ contains a small guitar part from the aforementioned Fab Four’s ‘Ticket To Ride’, the rest of the song stands by itself and doesn’t try to hide the fact that it has a borrowed riff. Elsewhere, Couple goes punk on ‘Semua Tak Boleh‘ (“Kalau semua pun tak boleh/Janganlah Malaysia Boleh!“) and ‘Hey Kawan-Kawan‘, which has only 2 lines of lyrics in the entire song. Pop Tak Masuk Radio ends with ‘Mencari Malaysia‘, a folkish harmonica tune about searching for identity. And that’s the best thing about Couple: while trying to find theirs, they inevitably help us find ours.
Listen to: ‘Lagu Cinta Untukmu’
If you like this you’ll dig: The Beatles, Teenage Fanclub, Free Love, Khottal