It was a dark and gloomy Labor Day in Singapore with showers of drizzle that went on the whole day. However, that did not stop the raging fans travelling from all over the island to EBX Live Space where the first ever Mayday! Singapore 2018 took place, all thanks to Skesh Entertainment! When the lineup was announced, I was thrilled to learn that it comprises of bands from Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and two American bands. Headlined by Attila and with Secrets on board, it’s already a party before it even begun.
From the rundown of bands performing that was posted on their Instagram, the show was set to commence at 3:15pm and true enough, the first group, a Singaporean metalcore band I, Devotion kicked off the festival on the dot. With only 20 minutes of stage time, they captivated the crowd as they two-stepped and moshed to their tunes. Next came another homegrown band, Of Thrones. Without further delay after they ended their set, out came Windrunner, a female-fronted band from Vietnam who won MerchCow’s Battle of the Bands. No language barriers were seen as they shared the music they love and made, to a crowd who appreciates it. It was evident that they were over the moon with the response they received.
Next came the Indonesian band, Last Goal! Party. I was in awe to see that many of the attendees were singing along to every word, moshing with their music. Music really does connect the world. They ended their set with the song “Wild and Free” which, as mentioned by their guitarist, a song with over 160,000 plays on Spotify.
It wasn’t long before everything was set up for Secrets. Hailing from San Diego, California, it was the first time the post-hardcore band played in Singapore. Having a whooping 7-song long setlist, it was obvious that they are a crowd favorite that day thus far. Not only were they energetic on stage, they were very charismatic too, addressing the crowd and interacting with them after every song. They even acknowledged some fans who were sitting on an elevated platform throughout the show (yes, we saw you too guys!). Performing songs like “Dance of The Dead”, “Sixteen” and “How We Survive”, as a long-time fan of them, I was pleased to know that the setlist have more songs from the 2013 album “Fragile Figures” which is my personal favorite. They ended their set with “Rise Up”. Chants for an encore was ringing the air as they step out off the stage but disappointedly, due to the tight schedule of the festival, they were unable to.
Fresh of the high from Secrets’ set, the party went on with the next act, Trophy Knives. Originally from Singapore’s next-door neighbor Malaysia’s capital of Kuala Lumpur, the trio blessed our eardrums with the goodness of punk rock and witty comments from the members. They ended their set with their latest single out now, “Amputated”. Next came Singapore’s local band Iman’s League followed by Villes. It was apparent that these two bands are the locals’ favorite! Formed in 2011, the quartet had since toured many places, even Japan and Australia and had opened for various bands in the past. This is my second time seeing them live and they sound even better than the first. By then, EBX Live Space was packed with fans not only from Singapore but also around the region, supporting all bands. It is magical to be a part of a small community that was brought together by our common love for the music.
To open for the headliner, Malaysian metalcore band Massacre Conspiracy ripped the stage for their debut performance in Singapore! Also known as MC16, they too have long been familiar with the underground scene and have opened for many bands in Malaysia such as Eyes Set To Kill, and Suicide Silence. They also became the champion of Hotsound Studio’s Battle of The Band in 2011 in which the grand prize was to perform at Canadian music festival Envol et Macadam, sharing the stage with As I Lay Dying! So, it was no surprise to see all attendees moshing and two-stepping to their tunes. As they play their final track, the crowd was then buzzing for Attila, coming from Atlanta, Georgia. As scheduled, at 9pm, out came the band led by the man himself, Fronz. Donning a bulletproof vest, his swagger was impeccable on stage, with profanities and hilarious slurs made at every chance he gets. He even called out on stingrays for the death of Steve Irwin (and proceeded to make t-shirts about it the next day which he posted on his Twitter account). Opening their set with “Moshpit”, it was a party from the beginning to the very end. Circle pits and crowd-surfing never frayed throughout their set. The crowd sang along to every word, even to the rap parts! It was an amazing set to end an amazing festival.
I was honored to be a part of this closed-knit community that was brought together by Skesh Entertainment. With the diverse array of bands from South East Asia, it was remarkable to discover bands from the region. Looking forward to the next one, Mayday! Singapore!