Backseat Radio blogger: local bands to watch in 2013

We continue our rundown on what to expect for 2013 with a look at the music that should rock your Malaysian socks. For that, we asked the music blogger behind Backseat Radio II to give us her choice picks.

Make no mistake: blogger and magazine writer Celeste Goh loves herself some music. As the wordsmith behind BRII and organiser of Record Store Day last year, the fan of rhythm has her ears to the tubthumping ground. So we invited her to give us the local music releases she's most looking forward to (or hoping dearly for) this year.

Darren Ashley
Drummers are usually forgotten in a band ensemble, but not so much for this indie-tronica maestro when he steps up from being the percussionist for local pop rock band Busco's to frontman in his solo endeavour (with a fiery red 'do to boot). Darren teased us all year long last year with his addictive homemade tracks like "Far Out" and "If I Don't Stay", performed a stellar set for "Vertigo" at the Shout! Awards with DJs Goldfish and Blink, and everywhere you turn, there he is on commercials. Will this finally be the year when he sits down and produces a proper album so that we can bring a piece of him home, you know, in case he doesn't stay?

They Will Kill Us All
After the long-awaited yet somewhat unsatisfying release of the EP Secret Episodes back in 2009, fans of this punk rock band have been waiting on hand and foot for their supposed immediate follow-up debut album to quench the seemingly incomplete seven-track release. You know what they say: all good things come to those who wait. Finally, the new band line-up dropped their debut album Vultures on Christmas Eve last year, and we're eager to see if they're able to restore the band to its former glory within the year.

The Impatient Sisters
Another collective riding the same waves as Darren Ashley are these indie folk sisters. Last year, they seemed to have come out of nowhere and arrested us with their sultry harmony for tunes like "Far Away" and "The Ark". Just like that, they seemed to have achieved overnight fame, and have gone on to collaborate with equally sensual local singers/songwriters like Zee Avi, Liyana Fizi and Diandra Arjunaidi. The Impatient Sisters have everything in common with them, except for one: an album. Will this be the year? We have to say, we're growing impatient!

Christian Palencia
Brother to the famed local jazz singer Mia Palencia, Christian does have big shoes to fill. But undoubtedly, he will rise up to the challenge and follow in the footsteps of his big sister. Having performed sparingly at acoustic gigs around town, namely the San Francisco Coffee Purple Day gig, and more exclusively at the family's Jen Underground Supper Club enclosure, Christian finally released his EP Adrenaline last year. Right now, we wait with bated breath to see if this bright 18 year old has anything else up his sleeves in 2013 that will leave a longer lasting impression on the scene besides being "that jazz musician's brother".

Read our other pieces on things to watch in 2013, including:
2013: Two Guys' Wooden Bow Ties
2013: Future Music Festival Asia
2013: Deworming in Sekinchan
2013: Burger Kaw Kaw
2013: Pastel Lite

Words by Celeste Goh.

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