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Interview: Pastel Lite

My guest today are the amazing Pastel Lite! The duo from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia have been making experimental music for quite some time now! They have created tracks such as Have me, Gold and Underdog (video above)! I was able to catch up with both members, to do this interview!

3.47: How did the name come about?
Pastel Lite: The truth was we never decided on a name really because we never thought of taking this band seriously initially. At the time we had just finished recording our first song which was “Heart Drum”. We thought that considering our first song was so light and happy, we should use a name that would represent that. We weren’t thinking through really. So we decided to call ourselves Pastel Lite, at least until we figure things out. Fast forward to now and after releasing numerous songs, we came to a point where we are more invested in making good music we cared about. So we didn’t bother changing our name because we wanted our music to speak for us even if it means that our name is not entirely relevant to the music we’re making now.

3.47: How did you all meet?
P.L: We met through Facebook when a mutual friend of ours introduces us to one another. Strangely enough, we didn’t know each other at all before that and was at a process of doing so throughout the entire first year of being in Pastel Lite. But we guess we were basically on the same page because we seem to be able to understand and tolerate each other. We had the same goals. That , and also chemistry we guess.

3.47: What inspires you as a artist?
P.L: We gather our inspirations from numerous sources. We both happen to be majoring in audio engineering, so the whole entire course can be considered a source of inspiration. People. Films. Cats. Video games. More cats. We honestly can’t say, we’re inspired by random things most of the time.

3.47: How long have you been singing?
Eff Hakim: I wouldn’t say I started off at a young age. I started when I was 12 or 13. I would write songs with my guitar and record them with my phone.But to say exactly when I decided to take it a bit more seriously would have to be when I was 17 onwards. Like Faliq, I was in numerous different bands before I had Pastel Lite.

3.47: You haven’t worked with anyone yet but given the chance who would you love to?
PL: We actually were fortunate to have had the chance to work with numerous Malaysian acts throughout our journey. But if we could work with any international acts that we both adore, it would have to be Gorrilaz or Damon Albarn to be specific.

3.47: What I find awesome is that you got a very unique sound,like it a completely a new genre of music! Has it been hard to get your type of style out there?
P.L: We’re lucky in a way because we came out at a time where the Malaysian indie music scene is expanding and is more accepting. But truth be told, we didn’t really think that the music we made was that unique to begin with. We just wanted to make good music that we love and that has always been the point of our whole existence. But thank you for thinking we’re unique, we highly appreciate that.

3.47: What was your reaction like when you saw the feedback coming in about your music?
P.L: Being very self critical, our first response was to be very sceptical over every feedback we gathered. And then transform all that sceptic energy into the very fuel that would keep us constantly trying to be better or to expand even. But yes there is also that naïve side of ourselves where we get very grateful and excited. But never to a point where we forget to get back to work.

3.47: If you had the power to run your own music label, what would you call it?
P.L: Pastel Records? Because we are narcissistic? (Laughs)..Kidding, we wouldn’t know what to name it truthfully, probably due to the fact that we have yet to really imagine having our own label. That would be the ultimate dream though and to not jinx it, we’ll keep it nameless for the time being.(Laughs)

3.47: What would you say has been the weirdest request you had?
P.L: Believe it or not, we’ve never had anyone requested us anything weird. Sorry.

3.47: When it comes to being independent what would you say are the advantage and disadvantage you have?
P.L: Advantages: The freedom to do anything and everything you wanted in whatever ways you please,not being told what to do and not having to worry too much about the whole “WHAT PEOPLE LIKE” issue. Disadvantages: in terms of financial and support, we don’t necessarily have a stability.

3.47: You recently been playing live which is great to hear! What was the experience like?
P.L: Playing live has always been a nerve wrecking experience. But it’s a wonderful experience regardless. We love getting emotionally invested in our live performances and to be able to escape for a while. We feel really blessed to be able to just be on any random stage and getting lost in the moment. It doesn’t get any better than this.

3.47: What’s your favourite song at the moment?
Eff Hakim: I’m not sure. But I’ve been listening to The Vine’s autumn shade because I’ve been feeling a bit nostalgic lately.
Mohd Faliq: I am currently listening to Damon Albarn’s new stuff.It’s pretty good.

3.47: What’s the best advice you been given?
Eff Hakim: I had countless from my mom because I go to her for anything. But the best she’d ever given me was FOLLOW YOUR BLISS.
Mohd Faliq: Respect people’s rights.

3.47: What advice can you give to others who want to be like yourselves?
P.L: The one advice we would like to give anyone who is interested in doing what we do in the music industry would have to be “be yourself”.We are well aware of how pretentious and redundant that advice may appear. But it‘s the one advice we could swear by. It’s okay to want to be better or to want to experiment yourself but never ever put your identity out of the equation because not only will that limit your creativity but it also makes doing this a lot harder. Because with all that pressure and work, you don’t need to be using up the very energy you have left into concealing yourself. That would be such a waste. You could instead use that energy on just getting your craft out there in it’s most honest form.

3.47: Does anyone else in your family sing or make music?
Eff Hakim: My father plays a bit of the violin, trumpet and guitar. And he was in a marching band when he was in college. But I doubt that counts.
Mohd Faliq: My father played in a heavy metal band.

3.47: What do you do in your spare time?
P.L: We both happen to be studying audio engineering in audio school. Faliq enjoys tidying the studio whenever his bored and Eff enjoys a quiet nap from time to time.

3.47: Do you have any other hidden talents?
P.L: Nobody knows this but Faliq’s secretly has a green thumb. He has a plant that he takes care of and it hasn’t died yet so we guess you could say his good at gardening. Eff on the other hand is really good at taking power naps at the most random places.

3.47: If you had the chance to run YouTube what would you change about it?
P.L: We’re not sure. We’d probably change the site’s rule and ensures that only cartoons are allowed to be uploaded into the site because we feel that more cartoons would actually do the world more good.

3.47: What can we expect from you in the future?
P.L: You could probably expect us to release our very first EP in the near future. More collaborations, more live shows and more songs we guess.

3.47: Final question! Any words you want to say to your listeners out there?
P.L: The first thing we would like to say is Thank you for even considering to even listen to our music in the first place because that is a big honour to us having people we don’t know scrolling through our tracks. The second thing would be we had hoped you enjoyed our music regardless. And the last thing would be have a great week and we bid you guys good luck in whatever random thing you’re putting up with right now.(Laughs)

3.47 would like to say a massive thank you to Pastel Life for spending the time doing the interview! Until next time guys!

Pastel Lite Links


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