As the band is preparing for their European tour with A Strength Within and No Turning Back, Singapore’s Overthrown took the time to answer our questions. Make sure to get into this band, and don’t miss out on their European tour dates.
Can you introduce yourself and your band?
Hi! I’m Jai, and I play guitar for Singapore hardcore band Overthrown. I’m also the founder of Reconstrux Booking.
How did you get introduced to hardcore in Asia?
I believe hardcore in Asia was founded in Singapore, because the first hardcore punk band formed here in 1988: Stompin’ Ground. I first got to know more local hardcore bands via the Lion City Hardcore compilation CD in the early 90’s, which was passed to me by my schoolmate when I was 13. I believe that CD has somehow influenced a lot of kids around the Asian region. I clearly remember falling in love with the music the first time after hearing it, and it got me more interested after reading the lyrics. From there I started going to shows with my skate friends, and also slowly learned more about American hardcore from the songs covered by local pioneer bands back then.
Can you describe the scene in Singapore/Asia, and highlight some things that you think differ from the western scene?
The scene here in Asia is pretty much the same as in America or Europe. It’s just that bands here don’t tour as much and the community is smaller. A lot of American/European bands that have played in Asia, which is not Japan alone, were pretty surprised with what they see. Of course, some Asian countries are not as developed, and a lot of “us” are too laid back, but the culture is pretty similar.
Your record As It Is contains many guest performances from known hardcore acts like Death Before Dishonor, Down To Nothing, and No Turning Back. How Did you manage to get these people involved? An how did it work out logistically?
I guess we’re rather fortunate because some of the bands happened to tour here during the process of our recordings. In the first place, I didn’t even expect that much guest vocals to be involved. I just asked them randomly, and they were all cool, and willing to do it. For the Asian guest vocals, they recorded their vocal tracks and e-mailed it to us. That was easy… The idea came about when Carl [Schwartz] did a cover song with us when First Blood played here. I asked if he was interested in doing guest vocals for one of our new songs, and he gave some tips on how to get things done. The funny part is that we didn’t end up having him on the record! The final product wasn’t what we planned initially, but it became more than what we expected it to be.
You’ve all been involved in the hardcore scene for quite some time. What all do you do besides playing music and booking shows?
All of us have permanent jobs. I’m a nurse, vocalist Ratchy is a firefighter, and both Yusof and Hotdog are technicians.
What do you think you should prepare for, coming to Europe for the first time, besides the fluctuating weather?
Honestly, we have no idea! Haha! Maybe the long drive, but we’ve had that experience when we toured Indonesia. We’re gonna find out more tips from the guys in No Turning Back and A Strength Within for sure.
Are you looking forward to see or experience any specific things in Europe?
Nothing in particular really, because there are a ton of cool and beautiful things in Europe. For the most I’m excited to see the moshpits, and meet the hardcore kids and make more friends.
What’s the craziest/funniest thing that has happened to you on tour?
Definitely the long drives during the Indonesia tour with Backtrack! We’ve never experienced such a thing before… We spent an average of 10-18 hours driving from show to show, especially in South-East Asia. Maybe it was a good preparation for this European tour, haha! It was tiring, but super fun. Crazy things happened during that tour, and playing UNO with Backtrack was really fun. Losers had to do stupid stuff…
What’s up next for Overthrown?
We’re currently working on our next release, which will be an EP. Hopefully we can release it late this year, or early next year, because we’re trying to book some shows in America next year.
Any last words?
Thanks for interviewing us, and we hope that all European kids will come and check us out! Keep hardcore alive, and keep the worldwide brotherhood real!