Riot return with a reboot

Riot return with a reboot
Riot !n Magenta, made up of (from far right) new member Khairyl Hashim, singer Eugenia Yip and keyboardist- producer Hayashida Ken, will have a lot more music-making on keyboards and guitars at their December gig.

Home-grown electro-pop act Riot !n Magenta love leet, the hacker community's practice of spelling English words with computer programming code.

This is obvious in their name, which substitutes an "i" with an exclamation point. R3B007, or Reboot in regular English spelling, is the title of their upcoming gig at the Esplanade Recital Studio on Dec 27, as well as their new EP.

In fact, their keyboardist-producer and principal composer Hayashida Ken, who started the group in 2011 with singer Eugenia Yip, professes to be a "hacker" himself.

"Sometimes when I produce our tracks, I need to 'hack' into Eugenia's emotions first. I have to decipher what she's thinking and analyse the lyrics she writes so that when she lays down the vocals, the song comes out right," says Ken, whose band named themselves after the song Riot In Lagos by Japanese avant-garde veterans Yellow Magic Orchestra and one of Ken's favourite colours.

Riot !n Magenta can be pretty avant-garde too.

Not only do they get inspiration from less mainstream films such as surreal romance-comedy Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (2004), but their music was also used as a soundtrack of sorts for Cloud, an experimental performance installation by artist Tara Tan that was staged at the Esplanade in June this year.

They will reprise their live performance in the installation when it heads to Tokyo next month, their second overseas performance after playing in Bali for the Hello ASEAN music festival in 2011.

But the Dec 27 Esplanade gig will be their most extensive live show yet. They are beefing up their electronic sound with a session drummer, Ritz Ang from pop-rockers The Summer State, and will feature a lot more actual music-making on keyboards and guitars.

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