Best of 2012: Az Samad on local songs (part 1)

Music makes the world go round. We love us some rhythms for the blues and other moods, so we bring you some of the best local music of the year; this list chosen by an amazing local musician in his own right: Az Samad.

A guitarist and composer, Az has recorded with Grammy-winners Flaco Jiménez and Max Baca; graduated and taught at the prestigious Berklee College of Music; and has appeared on 16 CDs ranging in styles from contemporary jazz to solo acoustic guitar. Which is to say, dude knows his music. So here are Az Samad's picks for favourite local songs of 2012:

"The Ark"
The Impatient Sisters

Why: Quirky, fun, cute pop song. It has a hypnotic quality, from the pacing of the guitars to the floating melody. And then the harmonies come in and wow, you’re in another world for just a while.

"Fries in Cream"

Why: Froya combines classic sing-along pop catchiness with the modern ear-candy electronics and beat into one yummy dish. Fun, and an act to look out for.

"Run" (video above is not the song, but the trailer from which the song is taken from, their new album Pax Automata)
Tempered Mental

Why: The song just has so much drive and energy from the start; all that rhythm, all those drum fills! Also, I love the guitar break in the middle of song, it reminds me of some stuff by American guitarist Buckethead.

"Concrete Wall"
Zee Avi
Why: I’m such a big fan of Zee’s debut album, and this song takes her melodic sensibilities and transforms it into something new by her use of layered vocal loops. Zee’s very true to her art, and I was reminded of how cool this track is when the music video was released just this month.

Rafique Rashid

Why: This is a crazy song by epic singer-songwriter Rafique Rashid. He’s performing live again - and he's someone you must watch live.

Az will also be performing in a special show called "The Malaysian Music Project", where vocalist Cheryl Tan and Az will re-intepret classics songs from P.Ramlee, Sheila Majid and Sudirman to modern favorites such as OAG, Yuna and Mia Palencia. Details:

The Malaysian Music Project
Date: Wednesday 19 December 2012
Time: 9:30PM
Venue: The Venue, Pavilion

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