Let me begin by disclosing the following: I cannot speak Thai. I cannot read Thai. I’ve never even been to Thailand. Like many people, however, I do enjoy Thai food, though that doesn’t really relate to this review (if you can even call it that – perhaps “impression” is a better word) which discusses the rather great nature of Kid – the latest album from Bangkok indie power pop-rock duo scrubb.
The best way I’ve come up with to describe the music on Kid (keeping in mind that I don’t understand a word that’s being sung) is this: it’s as if someone bottled up all the good vibes from a song like Faith No More’s Easy Like Sunday Morning and wrote a whole album from it in Thai. Ignorant comparisons aside, this is the kind of record that you put on whenever you want to feel at ease and, well, quite simply, nice. Which for most people, I assume, is a lot of the time.
scrubb are a singer-guitarist duo, though keyboards, brass and synths can occasionally be heard peeking through the standard layer of drums, bass, guitar and vocals. The production is clean and clear. Singer and lyricist “Muey” has a smooth, very listenable-to croon that reminds me of Blur’s Damon Albarn (sans the cockney, obviously), and the music by “Ball” provides numerous nods to late-90s Britpop-rock whilst staying true to its own twist on the Eastern easy listening sensibility.
The ten tracks on Kid are largely split between upbeat, guitar-pop tracks like Prohm and Suk Jai that could transform any tedious household chore or workplace task into an excuse to bop your head, clap your hands and smile; and slower numbers like Ni and Lom Bao whose ideal listening setting would involve being stretched out on a lazy hammock under the stars on the slowly lapping shores of some largely tourist-free exotic island in South-East Asia, gently caressed by a soft summer breeze whilst sipping on the fresh juices of a ripe coconut.
There’s not an awful lot of variety on Kid, but as you find yourself unwittingly listening to it on repeat you’ll come to realise that that’s not the point. The point is that you’ll be feeling better about things after it’s over; that whatever problems or headaches or nuisances that should’ve gotten you down during the day didn’t turn out to be so bad after all; and that songs with intangible feel-good charms like this really shouldn’t be pretentiously deconstructed in a review, but rather shared and enjoyed with friends.
Black Sheep/SonyBMG Thailand, 26/06/10
01. คำตอบ (Kam Tohb)
02. พร้อม (Prohm)
03. รอยต่อ (Rohi Toh)
04. สุขใจ (Kid Edited) (Suk Jai (Kid Edited))
05. วันเหล่านั้น (Wan Lao Nan)
06. หนี (Ni)
07. ฉันก็เป็นเหมือนใครคนหนึ่ง (Chan Gaw Pen Meuan Krai Kon Neung)
08. คนนี้ (Kon Ni)
09. ลมเบาเบา (Lom Bao)
10. คิด (Kid)
ต่อพงศ์ จันทบุบผา (Torpong Chantabuppha)* - Guitar
ธวัชพนธ์ วงศ์บุญศิริ (Thawachpol Wongboonsiri)** – Vocals
* Nickname: บอล (Ball)
** Nickname: เมื่อย (Muey)