be­yond’s new date in Kuching

Steve Wong and Paul Wong will per­form new songs in their Be­yond Rock & Roll Live In Kuching con­cert in Jan­uary.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - FRONT PAGE - by seTO KiT yAN sky­seto@thes­

NOW into their third decade of mu­sic­mak­ing, Hong Kong rock band Be­yond’s Paul Wong Koon Chung and Steve Wong Ka Keung con­tinue to be fired with en­thu­si­asm when­ever they talk about mu­sic.

The duo was chatty dur­ing an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view at KL In­ter­na­tional Air­port a fort­night ago be­fore their late night flight to Kuching to pro­mote their con­cert.

For a fresh spin on their show, Steve and Paul will be per­form­ing new songs which are yet to be re­leased.

“For this Kuching stop of our world tour, Paul and I have each writ­ten a song to suit the theme of the con­cert. For now, these two songs can only be heard at our con­cert.

“Since we have not yet re­leased the al­bum, Malaysian mu­sic fans would prob­a­bly not have heard them be­fore,” said Steve, adding that they will be sing­ing a mix of old and new songs.

“Lots of fans worry that we won’t per­form our older tunes. We’ll def­i­nitely sing the old favourites, too,” said Paul, adding that they may also in­clude some Man­darin songs for their Kuching show.

The 46-year-old Paul looked ev­ery inch the quin­tes­sen­tial rocker, with a bold curl­ing tat­too on his right arm, while Steve, 45, ap­peared more like the unas­sum­ing guy next door.

Yet, when the sub­ject turned to mu­sic, both men brimmed with ex­cite­ment as they took turns to share their lat­est ven­tures.

Steve, who has four solo al­bums to his name, will be re­leas­ing a new al­bum soon, but said it will not in­clude his new song.

“My new al­bum will be an in­stru­men­tal col­lec­tion of am­bi­ence mu­sic, so that song does not fit in. Af­ter mak­ing mu­sic for so many years, it has al­ways been my dream to cre­ate pure mu­sic, and I did not care to be bound by lyrics.”

Paul, who has re­leased nine solo al­bums, will be re­leas­ing a full rock al­bum with a mix of Can­tonese and Man­darin, maybe even English, tunes.

“I’ve been work­ing on it for the past few years, so what­ever con­cept I had ear­lier has grad­u­ally evolved into some­thing else now,” ex­plained Paul.

Be­ing quite the ide­al­ist, both guys are not too concerned about com­mer­cial is­sues, pre­fer­ring not to set rigid dead­lines for them­selves as they do not want to rush things and com­pro­mise on the qual­ity of their work.

With ram­pant down­load­ing and boot­leg­ging af­fect­ing much of the mu­sic in­dus­try, the two Wongs said though they tar­get a re­lease date this year, they would only do so when they feel ab­so­lutely ready.

Al­though mu­sic makes up a large part of their lives, both are grad­u­ally mov­ing on to other cre­ative ven­tures.

Af­ter star­ring in a dozen of Can­tonese films, the most re­cent be­ing triad flick Re­bel­lion (2009), Paul is tak­ing his in­volve­ment in Hong Kong cin­ema a step fur­ther. “I’m more in­ter­ested in be­hind-the-scenes and pro­duc­tion work. I’m now in the midst of writ­ing a screen­play for a movie.”

Steve, whose fo­cus has mainly been mu­sic, shared that he might be pen­ning a book in the near fu­ture.

Be­yond was formed in 1983 dur­ing an in­die band boom but grad­u­ally took its un­der­ground mu­sic to main­stream pop be­fore be­com­ing ar­guably the most in­flu­en­tial Hong Kong rock band of the 1980s and 90s. Their last lineup com­prised Yip Sai Wing, Paul, Steve and his brother Wong Ka Kui, who passed away af­ter a tragic fall from a 3m-high stage in 1993.

The three re­main­ing band mem­bers played their last world tour con­cert to­gether in 2005 and of­fi­cially dis­banded af­ter that.

Even though each mem­ber has since em­barked on his own solo ca­reer, they con­tinue to make mu­sic to­gether.

Yip and Paul last staged their Be­yond Next Stage con­cert in Gent­ing High­lands in 2008.

Be­yond Rock & Roll Live In Kuching

has been resched­uled from Oct 2 to Jan 15, 2011, to ac­com­mo­date a request by the Sarawak govern­ment for a state-level func­tion at the venue of Per­pad­uan Indoor Sta­dium in Kuching. Show­time is 8pm. Tick­ethold­ers are not re­quired to re­turn their tick­ets or ex­change them for new ones. The orig­i­nal tick­ets are valid for en­try on the new con­cert date. For re­fund, call % 039223 3667.

Tick­ets priced at RM588, RM388, RM308, RM228 and RM128 are avail­able at se­lected Rock Corner, Speedy Video and Lo Hong Ka out­lets.

For con­cert de­tails and ticket reser­va­tions, con­tact the or­gan­iser Star Planet (% 03-92233667 / www. star­ or Tick­etCharge (% 0392228811 / www.tick­etch or Top Star Global (% 082-410553).

Kuching date: Hong Kong rock­ers Steve Wong (left) and Paul Wong of Be­yond are look­ing for­ward to per­form­ing for Malaysian fans.

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